How Much Do NBA G League Players Make?

how much do g league players make

The NBA G League has launched the lucrative careers of superstars Rudy Gobert and Pascal Siakam with their mega-million multi-year deals. Even Jalen Green, a G League Ignite alum, is looking at a hefty post-rookie paycheck worth at least $160 million.

What they earned during their time in the minor league was likely just pocket change compared to what they’re making now.

So, exactly how much do G League players make? Find out below!

About the NBA G League

The G League is the NBA’s minor league, where young talents get valuable playing time they won’t get elsewhere. It’s also a stage for seasoned players to showcase their skills for another shot at the big league.

Once called the “D-League” (short for Developmental League), it adopted its new name because of its partnership with Gatorade.

Currently, there are 32 G league teams, including:

  • 30 NBA affiliates
  • G League Ignite
  • Mexico City Capitanes

how much does the highest-paid g league player make

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How Much Do G League Players Make?

NBA G League players on a Standard Contract earn enough to support themselves.

So, how much does a G League player make? The minimum paycheck is around $40,500, which is what most players take home. It may seem lower than the national average wage, but considering they play for only half the year, it’s still a decent chunk of money.

If you’re good enough to get called up to the NBA, you’re looking at an extra $5,820 in your pocket for each day you spend playing with the big boys, on top of your regular G League paycheck.

Some of the most prominent call-ups in NBA history include Danny Green, Alex Caruso, Hassan Whiteside, and Pascal Siakam.

During the offseason from April to September, players can supplement their income by working with their former schools, playing overseas, or taking up seasonal gigs.

How Much Do Two-Way Players Make?

Each NBA team can have up to three players under Two-Way Contracts at any given time. In this setup, two-way players play mostly in the G League and only 50 games or less with their NBA team.

They get a flat salary equivalent to half the minimum amount a player with zero years of service in the NBA makes. These contracts are exclusive to players with four or fewer years of NBA experience and can be signed for one or two seasons.

What Is the Professional Path Program?

The NBA G League’s Professional Path Program offers $125,000 contracts to elite high school prospects, as an alternative to college basketball. It allows these handpicked talents to spend a year in the G League before entering the NBA draft.

Think of it as a trade school for basketball, where players can hone their skills without the distractions of college.

However, the G League life is tough, with intense competition and high expectations. Players risk their draft status and future earnings if they don’t perform well.

how much does the highest-paid g league player make.

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What Other Benefits Do G League Players Receive?

G League players get housing provided during the season, a big relief considering how expensive it can be for most people. This means they can save 30% of their pay that typically goes toward rent or mortgage.

They also get health insurance benefits and daily stipends while traveling for games. These stipends cover their food and other essentials during trips. NBA players receive about $150 a day while traveling, so G-Leaguers probably get around $60–100 per diem.

The best part is they get to keep whatever they don’t spend or whatever they buy during these trips.

How Much Does the Highest-Paid G League Player Make?

The G League has inked deals with five-star recruits for exclusive deals worth top bucks.

For example, Houston Rockets’ Jalen Green bagged over $500,000 by joining G League Ignite under a Select Contract instead of going to the NCAA.

Before playing for the Portland Trailblazers, Scoot Henderson also signed a two-year contract for $1 million. Another up-and-comer, Dink Pate, is rumored to be the highest-paid NBA G League player, although there are no reports on exactly how much he’s earning.

These deals don’t happen often, but it proves the league is ready to go all-in to attract top talents.

What Is the Average NBA G League Salary?

Job site ZipRecruiter pegs the average NBA G League pay at $18.57/hour as of April 22, 2024. Hourly wages range from $13.70 to $24.28, but most players make between $16.35 and $19.71, showing a tight pay scale across the US.

Regardless of location and experience, the pay and prospects of going pro in the G League don’t vary much.

Some areas aren’t particularly bustling with job openings for G League positions, which isn’t surprising given the high standards for elite players. The league only signs over a hundred players each year who are eligible for the draft.

It’s a tough competition, especially since you’re up against international prospects and players released by NBA teams after training camp.

how much does g league players make

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Frequently Asked Questions

Who Is the Highest-Paid G League Player?

Four-star recruit Dink Pate (Pinkston) became the highest-paid player in the G League. He’s the youngest player to join the G League and the first from the Dallas-Fort Worth region.

Pate landed a two-year deal that’s putting some serious cash in his pocket, although the exact numbers are being kept secret.

What Is the Minimum Salary in the G League?

Since the 2022-23 season, the minimum salary has increased to $40,500 for a 5- to 6-month period, as per NBA reporter Shams Charania. Since the establishment of the G League’s union in 2020, players have pocketed $5,000 more per season.

Final Thoughts

So, how much do G League players make again?

Players earn a fraction of what NBA stars make, and the playing and travel conditions are decent but far from glamorous. It’s a tough grind that separates those with true NBA potential from the rest.

Lisa Morrison is a storyteller with an eye for life's wonders. Passionate about writing, she captures fleeting moments with precision. In her spare moments, she's often found chronicling the world around her.

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