8 Superstar Athletes Who Went Broke
Terrell Owens and Allen Iverson may be in the news, but they aren’t the only superstar athletes who’ve squandered tens — or hundreds — of millions of dollars.
By Doug Barry
By our count, Allen Iverson earned more than $154 million during his 14-year NBA career. He was Rookie of the Year, MPV, and an 11-time all star. But after blowing insane amounts of money on booze, gambling, jewelry, friends, family, and a personal hairstylist who traveled with him to away games, he’s now broke.
Iverson owes a couple million on a six-bedroom, nine-bathroom home in Denver, and most recently had his wages garnisheed for failing to pay a $860,000 jewelry bill. (We’ve all been there, Allen.) Of course, A.I.’s … intemperate financial history is hardly unique amongst athletes. A few years ago, Sports Illustrated claimed that 78 percent of former NFL players and 60 percent of former NBA players go broke or find themselves in serious peril following retirement. And that includes stars. Like, for instance …
Even with a 15-year career in pro football, reality TV show, and endorsement deals that totaled more than $80 million, Owens has apparently managed to squander most of his money. For starters, he endured $44,600 per month in child support payments, and made a slew of bad real estate investments that went bust after the housing market crashed in 2008. After the 2010-11 season, the Cincinnati Bengals declined to renew his $4 million contract, and no other NFL teams showed interest in signing him. To keep money coming in, Owens is now playing for the Indoor Football League, but he’s making … significantly less than $4 million a year. In a recent interview with GQ, T.O. admitted he’s “in hell” and that he has “no friends.” Shocking; he always charmed his teammates.
In 2009, the former Mets and Phillies scrapper, who’d become a successful businessman in retirement, was supposedly worth an estimated $58 million. And then he wasn’t. Dykstra was accused of credit card fraud, bouncing checks to escorts, and trying to lease high-end vehicles by providing fraudulent financial info (among a laundry list of other things). In April 2011, Dykstra was arrested in Los Angeles and charged with five counts of attempted grand theft auto, eight counts of filing false financial statements, four counts of identity theft, three counts of grand theft auto, and three counts of possession of a controlled substance. Originally looking at 12 years in prison, Dykstra struck a deal with prosecutors that would drop the drug charges once he completed a drugs and alcohol abuse program. When that happens, we’ll know how much time he has to serve.