Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard is the world's 33rd highest-paid athlete over the last year, according to Forbes' annual study of athletic earnings. Howard earned $14.5 million from the Magic and an additional $11 million in endorsements, which include deals with McDonald's and adidas. Howard stands as one of 13 NBAers on the list; Miami Heat forward LeBron James leads that group with $53 million in earnings. Professional boxer Floyd Mayweather, aptly nicknamed "Money," led all pro athletes with $85 million.
Howard's no. 33 ranking in 2012 represents a step down from 2011, when he placed 19th on Forbes' list despite earning just $2.1 million more than he did in 2012.
The drama surrounding Howard's future in Orlando contributed to a disappointing 2011/12 season for the team, and the way he comported himself throughout the process has certainly hurt his image.
Howard has one season left with the Magic, valued at $19.5 million, according to ShamSports. Unless he signs a contract extension, he will become an unrestricted free agent on July 1st, 2013.