In its sixth consecutive installment, The POWER 100, our proprietary annual ranking of the most powerful athletes in sports, uses a complex statistical model to accurately compare performance and influence through on-field and off-field attributes. This metric is collectively known as POWER, and enables equitable comparison across otherwise incomparable sports.

The 2015-16 POWER 100 focuses on long-established sports and the U.S. market specifically. Key indicator statistics were used as predictors of performance per sport. Statistical weight varied with impact. And for sports lacking indicator statistics, such as tennis and golf, relevant rankings were used. Together with our global distribution partner, Thomson Reuters, we have committed to strategically scheduled updates as we approach the Rio Games. We have set aside soccer until this time.

This year, on-field attributes comprise 50% of the athletes’ POWER.  The remaining 50% is based on off-field components like social media presence as measured by MVPindex. Combining on-field (50%) and off-field (50%) attributes yields the POWER score.  Athletes are then ranked based on POWER to find the TOP 100.      


The on-field attributes measure an athlete’s ranking within his or her sport, relative to all other participants. Each athlete is compared to peer group averages, by sport (and position when necessary), in a number of statistical categories. Next, a multiplier is used to adjust athletes’ rankings, based on the popularity and viewing audience of that sport. Given that some sports schedules overlap the calendar year, data for the 2015-16 POWER 100 is sourced from that sport’s most recently-completed regular season, or, in the case of tennis and golf, through the conclusion of the sports’ most recent tournaments.  NBA and NHL statistics were based through each league's respective 2016 All Star Games. The individual statistical categories for each sport are:

  • BASKETBALL (NBA) — Points, Blocks, Assists, Steals, and Rebounds (all on a per-game basis)
  • FOOTBALL (NFL) — Yards, Touchdowns, and Quarterback Rating (for QB) Yards, Touchdowns, and Receptions (by position, for offensive players); Tackles, Sacks, Interceptions, and Forced Fumbles (for defensive players)
  • BASEBALL (MLB) — Batting Average, Runs, Hits, Home Runs, Stolen Bases (for batters); Wins, Saves, Strikeouts, and Earned Run Average (for pitchers)
  • HOCKEY (NHL) — Goals, Assists, and Plus/Minus (for non-goalkeepers); Save Percentage, Wins, Goals Allowed Average, and Shutouts (for goalkeepers)
  • MOTORSPORTS (NASCAR) — Wins, Top 5 Finishes, Top 10 Finishes, Winnings, and Poles
  • GOLF  — Relative sport/world rankings
  • TENNIS — Relative sport/world rankings
  • MMA/BOXING — Relative sport/world rankings
  • OLYMPIC SPORTS — Medal count


The off-field score was measured by MVPindex whereby a unique scoring algorithm that blends three key social media metrics in its calculation. Unlike other indices that only measure reach or the size of one’s potential audience; MVPindex considers reach along with the subject’s actual social media engagement activity and the conversation surrounding the athlete across the web. These three components -reach, engagement, and conversation provide a focused picture of an athlete’s influence and the overall value of his or her social media footprint.  


Here are the Top 25 of the POWER 100 and their annual take from respective sponsors

  1. LeBron James: $44 million annually - Nike (lifetime sponsorship), Kia Motors, McDonald’s, Coca-Cola, Samsung, Beats by Dre, Upper Deck, Tencent, Audemars Piguet
  2. Stephen Curry: $12 million annually - Chase, Under Armour, Kaiser Permanente, Unilever’s Degree, JBL, Muscle Milk, Fanatics
  3. Novak Djokovic: $31 million annually - Uniqlo, Head, Adidas, Pugeot, Seiko, Unicef, Mercedes-Benz
  4. Serena Williams: $13 million annually - Nike, Wilson, Chase, Audemars Piguet, PepsiCo (Gatorade)
  5. Kevin Durant: $35 million annually - Nike, BBVA, Sprint, Sonic, Panini, 2K Sports, Skullcandy
  6. Patrick Kane: undisclosed amount - Bauer Hockey, McDonald’s
  7. Antonio Brown: undisclosed amount - Skittles, Nike, Champs Sports
  8. Cam Newton: $10 million annually - Under Armour, Gatorade, Microsoft, General Motors, Beats by Dre
  9. Rory McIlroy: $32 million annually - Nike, EA Sports, Bose, Omega, Upper Deck
  10. James Harden: $4 million annually - Nike, BBVA, BodyArmor, New Era, Foot Locker, Skullcandy, NBA2K, Panini, KT Tape
  11. Russell Wilson: $6 million annually - Bose, Microsoft, American Family Insurance, Braun
  12. Tom Brady: $7 million annually - Under Armour, Ugg, Movado
  13. DeMarcus Cousins: undisclosed amount - Nike, Chase Chevrolet, VSP Global, Mikuni
  14. Kevin Harvick: $2.5 million annually - Anheuser-Busch
  15. Anthony Davis: undisclosed amount - Nike, Red Bull, H&R Block
  16. Andy Murray: $16 million annually - Head, Rado, Standard Life, Under Armour
  17. Jimmie Johnson: $6.5 million annually - Chevrolet, Gap, Gatorade, Kobalt, Lowe’s, Seiko
  18. Roger Federer: $58 million annually - Wilson, Nike, Rolex, Mercedes-Benz, Gillette
  19. Maria Sharapova: $23 million annually - Avon, Cole Haan, Evian, Porsche, Samsung, Nike
  20. Rafael Nadal: $28 million annually - Tommy Hilfiger, Kia, Nike, Bacardi
  21. Russell Westbrook: $4.5 million annually - Nike, Mountain Dew, Subway, Six Star Pro Nutrition
  22. Bryce Harper: undisclosed amount - New Era, Gatorade, Under Armour, Warrior, Geico, Toyota
  23. Ronda Rousey: $3.5 million annually - Budweiser, Reebok, Monster, Monster Energy, Buffalo Jeans
  24. Jon Jones: undisclosed amount - GAT Nutrition (lost Nike/Reebok sponsorships)
  25. Jordan Spieth: $11 million annually - AT&T, Under Armour, BioSteel, Rolex, Titleist

Of note: Maria Sharapova’s most recent disclosed figures are listed, although her situation has drastically changed. Patrick Kane’s has lost a lot in the wake of his sexual assault allegations, Jon Jones has lost nearly all of his endorsements after his brawl, Demarcus Cousins/Anthony Davis/Bryce Harper since figures were not listed for their endorsement deals.

TOP 10

Get to know the Top 10 of the POWER 100

  1. LeBron James
    • Age: 31
    • POWER 100: 6th appearance, 5th top ten, 3rd straight #1 ranking
    • Twitter: @kingjames
    • IG: @kingjames
  2. Stephen Curry
    • Age: 28
    • POWER 100: 2nd appearance, 1st top 10
    • Twitter: @stephencurry30
    • IG: @stephencurry30
  3. Novak Djokovic
    • Age: 28
    • POWER 100: 4th appearance, 3rd top 10
    • Twitter: @djokernole
    • IG: @djokernole
  4. Serena Williams
    • Age: 34
    • POWER 100: 6th appearance, 1st top 10
    • Twitter: @serenawilliams
    • IG: @serenawilliams
  5. Kevin Durant
    • Age: 27
    • POWER 100: 6th appearance, 2nd top 10
    • Twitter: @kdtrey5
    • IG: @easymoneysniper
  6. Patrick Kane
    • Age: 27
    • POWER 100: 2nd appearance, 1st top 10
    • Twitter: @88pkane
    • IG: @ppkaner
  7. Antonio Brown
    • Age: 27
    • POWER 100: 2nd appearance, 1st top 10
    • Twitter: @antoniobrown84
    • IG: @antoniobrown84
  8. Cam Newton
    • Age: 26
    • POWER 100: 3rd appearance, 1st top 10
    • Twitter: @cameronewton
    • IG: @cameron1newton
  9. Rory McIlroy
    • Age: 26
    • POWER 100: 4th appearance, 2nd top 10
    • Twitter: @mcilroyrory
    • IG: @rorymcilroy
  10. James Harden
    • Age: 26 POWER 100: 3rd appearance, 1st top 10
    • Twitter: @jharden13
    • IG:  @jharden13