The Washington Wizards are already losing enough on the court. They don't need to be catching losses off the court as well. Yet, the Wizards couldn't escape catching a stray from a different sport. Nick Kyrgios, controversial tennis star and a Wimbledon finalist, threw shade at Kyle Kuzma in his interview with the Athletic.
"[Kyrgios] doesn’t understand how just a moderately talented NBA player such as Kyle Kuzma of the Washington Wizards could sign a four-year contract this summer worth $100million — nearly as much as Roger Federer earned in prize money ($130m) during his entire career.- The Athletic
“He’s not even a top 50 player” "
Kyrgios is right. Kuzma is not a top-50 player. But, he is also not getting paid like one. He is the 55th-highest paid player in the NBA, and his salary is declining over the next four seasons, meaning he will be even lower on the highest-paid players list.
Is it fair that possibly the greatest tennis player of all-time Roger Federer made the same amount of money in his tennis career as Kuzma? Maybe not.
But, comparisons across generations and sports are a fool's errand. The popularity of the NBA and the finances involved in basketball are a different beast than professional tennis. Kyle Kuzma, in his response to Kyrgios, highlighted this point well.
The NBA has surpassed $10 billion in terms of total revenue in the 2022-23 season. And only 50% of this goes to the players, while they are the ones creating the product and generating the majority of the value. If anything, players are not paid nearly enough.
Therefore, Kyrgios' frustrations are misplaced. NBA players, including Kyle Kuzma, basically get paid according to the revenue they generate. The owners, who generate passive income through their investments to the team, surely deserve more of the disdain, rather than the employees aka the players.