Highest Paid NBA Commentators 2021 (All Current Salaries)

NBA Commentators SalaryNational Basketball Association (NBA) is the men’s professional basketball league and is one of the four major professional sports league in the United States. According to surveys, it’s the 3rd most popular sporting competition in the US territory. The league has produced numerous legends who has amazed the fans throughout their career. But this article is not about the NBA players, instead this one will be about the NBA commentators. In this article we will present you the list of the NBA Commentators’ Salary.

As we all know, commentators are the voice of the game. A game is not only beautiful by the players performances but also through how the glossers describing it. Their enthusiastic voices express the beauty of the game. Good commentary reflects the true picture of a sporting event. Thus they are the indispensable equipment for any sporting event.

The Chart of NBA Commentators Salary

Name Annual Salary Major Role Channels Worked On
Stephen A. Smith 10 Million USD Commentator and Analyst ESPN
Bob Costas 7 Million USD Play by Play Commentator and Host WGN-TV, CBS, NBC Sports
Mike Greenberg 6.5 Million USD Studio Host ESPN, ABC
Tony Kornheiser 6 Million USD Studio Host ESPN
Michael Wilbon 6 Million USD Studio Analyst ESPN
Al Michaels 6 Million USD Commentator NBC Sports, ABC
Skip Bayless 6 Million USD Sports Writer and Analyst ESPN
Charles Barkley 5 Million USD Commentator and Analyst TNT
Michelle Beadle 5 Million USD Studio Host ESPN
Dan Patrick 5 Million USD Analyst ESPN, NBC Sports
Jalen Rose 3 Million USD Studio Host ESPN
Linda Cohn 3 Million USD Studio Host ESPN
Grant Hill 2 Million USD Commentator NBA TV
Manv Albert 2 Million USD Play by Play Commentator TNT
Jay Bilas 2 Million USD Commentator CBS, ESPN
Rachel Nichols 1.5 Million USD Studio Host ESPN
Dan Shulman 1 Million USD Commentator ESPN
Kevin Harlan 1 Million USD Broadcaster TNT
Ian Eagle 400 Thousand USD Play by Play Commentator TNT
Rebecca Haarlow 50 Thousand USD Sideline Reporter TNT

How Much the NBA Commentators Earn Generally?

The average annual salary for the NBA glossers are around 80 thousand US Dollars. So the average weekly income for the NBA commentators is around $1500. However, most of the famous and well established ones earn more than 100 thousand USD a year. However, the ones who are much more popular and valuable, do have 7 digit earnings in a year which is very much lucrative. So many play by play commentators and analyst announcers do have yearly earnings more than 1 million USD. I must add that, some of the glossers earn even more than 5 million US Dollars annually which is such big and lucrative amount. So this huge amount of money may inspire so many young guys to choose the commentary as their profession.

Standard Weekly Salary  Monthly Salary Yearly Salary
Average 1500 USD 6000 USD 80 Thousand USD
Well Established More than 2 Thousand USD More than 8 Thousand USD 100+ Thousand USD
Best More than 20 Thousand USD More than 80 thousand USD (1-10) Million USD

Most Popular and Valuable Commentators of the NBA:

Let’s have a look at the most popular and valuable announcers of the NBA who are the very bests in the business.

Stephen A. Smith

Stephen A. Smith: One of the very popular commentators in the US. He is the host of the TV show First Take. Smith also features occasionally on the SportsCenter as a NBA analyst. The 52 years old is an expert of the games and is very much popular mainly for his sharp commentary. However, he is also very much entertaining. With the combination of all those attributes he is a desired staff of the ESPN and deserves every penny of his salary. The New York born sports TV personality earns an enormous 10 million USD per year. He is also the highest paid sports TV personality just behind Jim Rose.

Bob Costas

Bob Costas: One of the most famous personalities in sports. Bob talks sharp and knows what he is talking about. He makes the scenarios live right in the ears of the hearer. The 68 years old veteran has a versatile career and covered so many major events throughout his career. He was simply unmatchable during the peak time of his career. He served as the play by play commentator for the Chicago Bulls on WGN-TV during 1979-80 NBA season. Bob has a yearly income of around 7 million US Dollars which is definitely a massive amount of money.

Michael Wilbon

Michael Wilbon: A valuable staff for ESPN, Michael Wilbon is co-host of the TV show “Pardon the Interruption”. He works together with Tony Kornheiser. Wilbon is a very much experienced sportscatser. He is mostly popular due to his sharp commentary. Now he is serving as a studio analyst for the ESPN. He has done the likes of NBA, NFL, MLB as well as the Olympics. His annual income is as much as 6 million US Dollars.

Charles Barkley

Charles Barkley: Barkley is definitely one of the best ever NBA players in the history. He represented 3 sides as a player which includes 76er, Suns as well as the Rockets. He had an amazing career as a power forward. However, after his retirement as a player back in 2000, he didn’t walk away from the Basketball court. Instead, he involved himself as an analyst of the game. He is working as an analyst on TNT and working almost for 20 years for the company. The former NBA star is still earning big and his current yearly income is as much as 5 million.

Michelle Beadle Salary

Michelle Beadle: Another person with enormous talent. She is a versatile staff for the ESPN. Beadle worked as a reporter and a host. In fact, she was a co-host of the morning TV show Get Up! Now she is working with ESPN on NBA coverage. She is also the co-host of TV show SportsNation on ESPN2. The 44 years old Italy born has huge experience as her working life started in 1997. Beadle earns $5 million and deserves every cent of it for sure.

Jalen Rose

Jalen Rose: The former professional basketball players who played for as many as 6 NBA sides, went into the retirement back in 2007. The small forward cum shooting guard has now got another way to keep earning. He is working with famous company ESPN and working as a sports analyst. He is co-hosting the morning TV show Get Up! Rose was not only a discreet player on the court but also a good broadcaster. However, I must mention that, the show he is doing doesn’t only feature basketball, so he has to talk and analyse various sports along with Basketball. Rose’s annual salary is 3 million US Dollars.

Grant Hill

Grant Hill: Another player cum broadcaster on the chart. Hill had quite an amazing career as a player. The Texas born NBA star who wore the jerseys of Pistons, Magic, Suns and Clippers ended his playing career back in 2013. However, he hasn’t stopped himself from working at all. Now he is working as a broadcaster. He is using his experiences as a player and helping himself analyzing various phases of the game brilliantly. It has been a good journey so far for him and he is earning $2 million a year which is quite good for sure.

Marv Albert

Marv Albert: One of the best ever commentators in the history of the Basketball. He is nicknamed as “The Voice of Basketball”. Although he is working at TNT broadcasting NBA games, he has also done play by play for a large number of Super Bowl and NBA finals. He has enormous knowledge in so many sports and that’s helping the veteran earning as much as 2 million USD per year. However, we really think, he should have earned much more than the amount he is gaining.

Rachel Nichols

Rachel Nichols: Another proud woman who is successfully doing what she loves to do. Nichols is currently hosting “The Jump” on ESPN. She is a broadcaster of very good quality and is a hard working woman. Rachel is gaining 1.5 million US Dollars per annum for her works which is pretty good.

Kevin Harlan

Kevin Harlan: Harlan works on both TV as well as Radio and has made name for himself. He works as a broadcaster of the college basketball games on CBS meanwhile announces the NBA games on TNT. He also works as a radio broadcaster. For all these works, he is earning 4 hundred thousand US Dollars a year. Although he is not earning as much as the above mentioned commentators do, he is still doing great and may reach to higher level in the upcoming years.

Radio and Television Sports Announcers Salary:

This part of the article will be helpful for the guys who want to see themselves as a Radio or TV Sports Announcer. There are pretty much options in the US due to versatility of sports and big number of TV and Radio Channels. According to the reports, the average hourly salary for a sports announcer is around 13 USD. The lower range starts from $7.45 per hour meanwhile the higher range can be up to the $36 an hour. The average yearly income for the sports announcers will be around 41,800 US Dollars. The lower range starts from $18,800 per year meanwhile the higher range can be as much as 75 thousand USD or even more per annum.

Salary Type Salary Amount
Higher Hourly Wage 36 USD
Average Hourly Wage 12.95 USD
Lower Hourly Wage 7.45 USD
Higher Yearly Wage 75,000 USD
Average Yearly Wage 41,800 USD
Lower Yearly Wage 18,800 USD


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