Coming into the 2012-13 NBA season, Kobe Bryant will be the highest paid player in the league with a salary of $27.8 million. The closest player next to Kobe on the highest paid list in the NBA is Dirk Nowitzki of the Dallas Mavericks with $20.9 million.
The rest of the names of the list aren’t much of a surprise with Carmelo Anthony ($20.5), Amar’e Stoudemire ($19.9) and Joe Johnson ($19.8) rounding out the top five. Fellow Lakers Dwight Howard ($19.5) and Pau Gasol ($19.0) come in at six and seven followed by Chris Paul ($17.8), LeBron James ($17.5), Chris Bosh ($17.5) and Dwyane Wade ($17.2).
It could be argued that a few names on the list above aren’t worth anything near their salary for the upcoming NBA season. The two names that stick out more than any are Stoudemire and Johnson. Neither player can justify their salaries moving forward, but will continue to be overpaid for the next three to four years.
Although it would be easy to make arguments for Johnson and Stoudemire as the most overpaid players in the league, ESPN analyst Skip Bayless makes his case for Kobe as a highly over compensated athlete for what he brings to the NBA and the Los Angeles Lakers: