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NHL Fortune: $48,211,434

Description

Wayne Gretzky’s net worth / earnings / salary history: Earned US $48,211,434 (US $101,170,054 in today's dollars), ranking #224 in NHL / hockey career earnings. Currently under contract for US $0 for a projected hockey fortune of US $48,211,434.

Birthdate: January 26, 1961
Country of birth: Canada
Position: C

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Salary History
All amounts in US$ unless otherwise noted.
Season   Salary
(US$)
In today's
US$
NHL
Rank
1976-77 $0 $0
At age 15, he received two contract offers from teams in the World Hockey Association in which he was interested but his father turned them down as he wanted him to go back to school: $50,000 for three years followed by $150,000 per year for four years and a $25,000 signing bonus from the New England Whalers and $80,000 per year for two years from the Birmingham Bulls.
Source: Book: Blue Lines, Goal Lines and Bottom Lines
1977-78 $1,763 $8,561
Contract in Canadian currency: $1,875. Prior to the season, signed a four-year contract with the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds, of the Ontario Hockey League (junior), for weekly payments of CAN$25 in salary during the season, CAN$65 during the playoffs, and CAN$40 for accomodation in 1977-78 and 1978-79, and CAN$30 in salary during the season, CAN$65 during the playoffs, and CAN$40 for accomodation in 1979-80 and 1980-81. Played the whole season (approximately 24 weeks) and two playoff rounds (3 weeks), earning approximately CAN$1,875.
Source: Book: Blue Lines, Goal Lines and Bottom Lines
1978-79 $394,650 $1,781,158
Contract in Canadian currency: $450,000. On June 12, 1978, at age 17, in his 1st year as a professional player, signed a seven-year personal services deal with Nelson Skalbania, owner of the Indianapolis Racers of the World Hockey Association, for CAN $1.7M overall. After 8 games, Skalbania sold Gretzky to the Edmonton Oilers, of the World Hockey Association. Gretzky played the remainder of the season there and the next season, the WHA folded and Edmonton joined the NHL. On January 26, 1979, signed a 21-year personal services deal with Peter Pocklington for CAN$100,000 in 1978-79 ($15,000 had already been paid by the Racers), CAN$150,000 in 1979-80 and 1980-81, CAN$175,000 in 1981-82, CAN$280,000 from 1982-83 to 1986-87 and a CAN$350,000 signing bonus. A new contract with the Edmonton Oilers ended up superceeding this one in 1987. In 1978-79, earned the CAN$350,000 bonus and C$100,000 salary.
Source: Books: The Rebel League / Book: Blue Lines, Goal Lines and Bottom Lines / Book: Brian McFarlane's History of Hockey / The Sporting News
1979-80 $128,100 $519,601
Contract in Canadian currency: $150,000. Also had a $3,000 endorsement deal with the Titan hockey stick company.
Source: Book: Blue Lines, Goal Lines and Bottom Lines / Maclean's
1980-81 $128,250 $458,158
Contract in Canadian currency: $150,000. Earned $100,000 for a 7-Up commercial and had a $3,000 endorsement deal with Titan hockey stick company. According to his business manager Gus Badali, in the 1982 Complete Handbook of Pro Hockey, he earned twice as much off-the-ice as on the ice.
Source: Book: Book: Blue Lines, Goal Lines and Bottom Lines / 1982 The Complete Handbook of Pro Hockey / Maclean's / The Sporting News
1981-82 $417,000 $1,350,251
Contract in Canadian currency: $500,000. Early in the season, renegotiated a new six-year contract with the Edmonton Oilers for $500,000 in 1981-82, $550,000 in 1982-83, $600,000 in 1983-84 and the chance to earn as much as $1M the final three years. On January 20, 1992, signed yet a new 21-year personal-services contract with Edmonton Oilers' owner Peter Pocklington, apparently worth $20M over the first 15 years, broken down in nine, six and six-year stages after which renegotiations could take place. In addition, earned about $400,000 in endorsements from 7-Up, Bic razors, GWG Jeans, Neilson chocolate and others. Also had a $3,000 endorsement deal with the Titan hockey stick company. (Earned a salary of $175,000 according to Maclean's and the book: Blue Lines, Goal Lines and Bottom Lines.)
Source: The Sporting News
1982-83 $446,050 $1,360,799
Contract in Canadian currency: $550,000. (Earned $1M in salary according to another edition of The Sporting News and $280,000 according to the book: Blue Lines, Goal Lines and Bottom Lines.)
Source: The Sporting News
1983-84 $486,600 $1,438,304
Contract in Canadian currency: $600,000. (Earned $280,000 according to the book: Blue Lines, Goal Lines and Bottom Lines.)
Source: The Sporting News
1984-85 $825,000 $2,338,082
According to The Hockey News 1985 Yearbook, he earned nearly $1,000,000 in salary. According to the book Blue Lines, Goal Lines and Bottom Lines, he earned C $280,000.
Source: Globe and Mail
1985-86 $878,400 $2,404,025
Contract in Canadian currency: $1,200,000. Earned CDN $280,000 according to the Book: Blue Lines, Goal Lines and Bottom Lines.
Source: Book: Brian McFarlane's History of Hockey
1986-87 $201,600 $541,475
Contract in Canadian currency: $280,000.
Source: Book: Blue Lines, Goal Lines and Bottom Lines
1987-88 $754,000 $1,953,684
Contract in Canadian currency: $1,000,000. Earned CAN$1M from the Edmonton Oilers, including base salary and bonuses. He also had endorsement deals totalling approximately $1M for the year from companies such as Pro-Stars cereals, Mr. Big chocalate, 7-Up, and GWG jeans. (Earned $717,000 according to the book The Whalers / Earned CAN$ 1.1M according to The Daily Collegian.)
Source: Edmonton Journal / Maclean's
1988-89 $2,000,000 $4,978,860
Base salary of $2M. (Earned $2.2M according to Luc Robitaille on the Cam & Strick podcast; Earned $900,000 according to the New York Daily News.)
Source: Book: The Whalers
1989-90 $1,720,000 $4,084,601 2
Had a $125,000 endorsement deal with the Titan hockey stick company. According to Sports Illustrated, on February 1, 1990, the Kings announced that during the summer prior to the season, Gretzky signed a nine-year contract for $31.3M, an upgrade on the contract signed right after his trade to the Kings.
Source: Canadian Press / Mclean's
1990-91 $3,000,000 $6,759,529 1
One-way contract. In March 1991, along with LA Kings owner Bruce McNall (who in 1993 pleaded guilty to 2 counts of bank fraud and to single counts of conspiracy and wire fraud in connection with a scheme to defraud 6 banks, 1 securities company and the Kings), Gretzky purchased a 1909 T206 Honus Wagner baseball card for $451,000. In 1995, they sold it for $500,000 to Wal-Mart and Treat Entertainment for use as the grand prize in a promotional contest.
Source: Book: The Card / Associated Press / The Hockey News / Canadian Press
1991-92 $3,000,000 $6,485,058 1
1992-93 $3,000,000 $6,294,185 3
Amount includes salary and any signing bonus paid in 1992-93.
Source: The Hockey News / La Presse
1993-94 $3,000,000 $6,113,803 3
Includes base salary and any signing bonus and deferred payments allocated to the 1993-94 season. According to the book Canada's Game, also earned $12,000,000 in fees and royalties from merchandise sales.
Source: The Hockey News
1994-95 $3,737,159 $7,422,882 1
Because of the lockout, his NHL salary of $6,540,028 was prorated for the 48-game season. His portfolio of endorsements and partnerships added $11.9M to his salary for the year. Included deals with Domino's Pizza, Sharp Electronics, Coca-Cola and Zurich Insurance.
Source: Maclean's
1995-96 $6,545,363 $12,645,720 1
Source: La Presse / Book: The Whalers
1996-97 $5,047,500 $9,473,918 3
Prior to the season, signed a two-year contract with the New York Rangers for an incentive-laden $10M contract. (According to the book Gold, it was a two-year contract for $8M.)
Source: La Presse / Guide Hockey RDS / Sports Illustrated
1997-98 $6,500,000 $11,921,256 4
Includes base salary, signing bonus and bonuses paid in 1997-98.
Source: The Hockey News
1998-99 $6,000,000 $10,836,145 6
Includes base salary, signing bonus, bonuses paid in 1998-99, and deferred income paid in 1998-99. Retired as a hockey player after the season.
Source: The Hockey News
2021-22 $0 $0 1359
In late May 2021, signed a five-year contract with Turner Sports to act as an in-studio hockey analyst for $US 3M/season starting with the 2021-22 NHL season.
Source: The Globe and Mail
2022-23 $0 $0 1377
Under contract with Turner Sports as a hockey analyst for $3M.
Source: The Globe and Mail
Career Total: US $48,211,434
(In today's dollars: US $101,170,054)

NHL Rank: 224
(In today's dollars: 69)
Under Contract
2023-24 $0
Under contract with Turner Sports as a hockey analyst for $3M.
Source: The Globe and Mail
2024-25 $0
Under contract with Turner Sports as a hockey analyst for $3M.
Source: The Globe and Mail
2025-26 $0
Under contract with Turner Sports as a hockey analyst for $3M.
Source: The Globe and Mail
Under contract for: US $0

Projected fortune at end of contract: US $48,211,434