Chris Paul is one of the richest NBA players to ever live. The Phoenix Suns superstar has made nearly $300 million in earnings throughout his professional career, but he’s remained humble every step of the way. Even back when Paul wasn’t a millionaire yet, he was always thinking of others before himself.
When the future Hall of Famer cashed his first $25,000 check from his agency, he made the most humble purchase in an effort to thank some of the people who helped him reach the NBA in the first place.
Chris Paul’s life changed forever when he received his first $25,000 check
Growing up in Winston-Salem, N.C., Paul lived a modest life with his mother, father, and older brother, C.J. He never really knew what extreme wealth was as a child, but that changed pretty quickly after he decided to enter the NBA draft in 2005.
Paul declared for the draft after his sophomore season at Wake Forest, and he immediately became one of the most coveted prospects in the upcoming class. Leading up to the draft, Paul hired an agent who offered him a $100,000 advance, but his parents convinced him that $25,000 would suffice for the time being.
Even after accepting a 75% pay cut, Paul told CNBC Make It in 2018 that cashing that $25,000 check was one of the best days of his life.
″That was the day my life changed,” he said.
Paul made the most unselfish purchase after cashing his first big check
What do most athletes do after cashing their first life-changing paycheck? Blow it all on a new mansion? Splurge on a pimped-out car or fancy jewelry?
But not Paul.
Immediately after cashing the first $25,000 from his agency, Paul decided to splurge on his closest companions instead.
“I took my girlfriend, my best friend, his girlfriend [and] we went to a mall, and we went into a couple stores and I was like, ‘Just get something,’” Paul told CNBC.
The star point guard explained his spending habits changed drastically that day.
″[There’s] no feeling like it,” he continued. “Because we used to go on double dates to TGI Fridays, and when they would come with the bill, we’d be like ‘Two bills, please.’ You know, me and my girl, him and his girl. That day, and ever since, it’s been one bill.”
Chris Paul has now made nearly $300 million in the NBA
Back in 2005, $25,000 was a life-changing amount of money for Paul. But nowadays, $25,000 is just a drop in the bucket for the Suns All-Star.
After 16 seasons in the NBA, Paul has amassed $299.9 million in earnings, making him the fourth-richest basketball player of all time. Only LeBron James, Kevin Garnett, and Kobe Bryant have earned more money in the NBA over the course of their careers.
Even with his historic riches, though, Paul still looks out for the people closest to him. That’s what makes him not just one of the best players to ever live, but one of the most generous as well.