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29+ Highest-Paid WNBA Players in the History of the League, Ranked


| LAST UPDATE 01/22/2023

By Stormy Lindon

It's time to pay attention to the females on the hardwood. Out of the 12 teams, a selection of players have risen to the top and become ultimate champs. Here are the top-paid WNBA athletes throughout history...

30. Alysha Clark

Average Annual Value: $183,000/Year

The forward for the Washington Mystics continues to impress us. Game after game, she can be found tearing up the court. Still, when it comes to salary, she is making much more than many.

Alysha Clark WNBA SalaryAlysha Clark WNBA Salary
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herhoopstats placed her with a cool $183,000/year paycheck in 2022. Named Player of the Year during all four years of college, Clark's success is living proof that women are just as capable of dominating the hardwood. But while this year she'll be a free agent, there's more where that came from. Keep scrolling.

29. Emma Meesseman

Average Annual Value: $185,000/Year

In 2021, Sky guard Emma Meesseman signed a contract for a whopping 1-year, $185K deal for the season. That's an average annual value of $185,000, as herhoopstats reports. Currently, the now-free agent is setting the bar for future athletes, showing what can be accomplished when we hustle and grind.

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The Belgian professional hoops player was the 2019 WNBA champion and Finals MVP. In 2011, she became the consecutive 'it' girl of basketball after achieving the FIBA Europe Under-18 Championship MVP, masked as Young Woman's Player of the Year, and the Belgium League champion and championship MVP.

28. Erica Wheeler

Average Annual Value: $185,400

For Dream G's Erica Wheeler, her dream came true. After signing a two-year contract with the WNBA, the star player has cemented her status as one of the highest-paid female players in the history of the league. But don't take our word for it...

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According to Bleacher Report, the star player secured an average annual salary of $185,400 in 2022. While this year she'll be a free agent, her value speaks to the legacy she is already leaving behind. We'd certainly keep an eye on this one...

27. Natasha Cloud

Average Annual Value: $190,000/Year

This 2023 season, Natasha Cloud of the Washington Mystics became one of the highest-paid WNBA players in history - with an average annual value of $190,000, per herhoopstats! And honestly, it's amazing to see how far women's sports have come in terms of recognition.

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The champ has now taken on social media as a way to flex her talent to all her followers. After appearing twice in the NCAA tournament and winning two Philadelphia Big Five Titles - as well as the 2013 Atlantic 10 championship - she was the first Hawk to be drafted to the WNBA. She must be on cloud 9.

26. Jasmine Thomas

Average Annual Value: $190,000/Year

Jasmine Thomas, formerly of the Connecticut Sun, is about to break through her personal glass ceiling as one of the top-paid stars in WNBA history. After inking a 2023 contract with an average annual value of $190,000, according to several reports, she's doing just fine.

Jasmine Thomas WNBA StatsJasmine Thomas WNBA Stats
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As she continues to display nothing but talent, she is making a killing while doing so. Not only was she traded to the LA Sparks on January 16, but she has shown us that if we all commit to our goals, there's nothing stopping us from achieving success. Consider us impressed.

25. Bria Hartley

Average Annual Value: $190,606

Bria Hartley is crushing it. As she sets her place among the highest-paid players in WNBA history, she's setting the bar high. While she only partially played in the WNBA due to overseas commitments, she is never one to slack off on the court. And she raked in a cool annual salary of $190,606, per Boardroom.

Bria Hartley WNBA SalaryBria Hartley WNBA Salary
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But she is worth way more than that hefty paycheck. This champ knows her worth and expects to be compensated for it. During the 2022 WNBA draft, she made a big step after being acquired into a three-team deal with Pheonix and Chicago, but Indiana secured her as a point guard. Look out for this triple threat.

24. Candace Parker

Average Annual Value: $195,000

The all-star WNBA player recently signed a contract of $195,000, securing her name on this list. But don't worry - the big bucks are not holding her back from achieving even more on the court. Then again, the star player knew she was a shoo-in since the early days.

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As a sophomore, Parker was the first woman to dunk in an NCAA tournament and won back-to-back titles in 2007 and 2009. Her early days started easy as a first-year pro in 2008. While practice makes perfect, she had it in her bones, allowing her to achieve a gold medal at the Beijing Olympics and named league WNBA MVP for the LA Sparks.

23. Courtney Vandersloot

Average Annual Value: $195,000

Sky guard Vandersloot just solidified her status in WNBA history. In early 2022, she inked a one-year $195,000 contract with the Chicago Sky. This is what we call aiming high. With an average annual value of the same amount, this is one of the largest deals that any WNBA player has ever been offered, and it's huge news in the b-ball world.

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Vandersloot is recognized for her incredible career, and it is only a matter of time to see what else she brings to WNBA. She had the biggest comeback in WNBA history after being dubbed a "silent assassin" by Spokesman. She ranks fourth on the WNBA's all-time list at 2,291 assists and helped Chicago with its first WNBA championship in 2021.

22. Cheyenne Parker

Average Annual Value: $196,100

Cheyenne Parker is living the dream. After penning a deal for over half a million dollars, per Boardroom, this is just the beginning for the big baller. Compared to her peers, who typically secure contracts of $50K-$100K, it's quite an upgrade!

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In sum, she's looking at an average annual value of $196,100, according to several outlets - not too bad, considering she started her passion for shooting hoops in high school. She has come a long way since then. In fact, in August of 2022, she went viral after scoring the winning basket for the Atlanta Dream.

21. Kristi Toliver

Average Annual Value: $196,100

Kristi Toliver is sure to be making money for her moves. She made it to the list of highest-paid WNBA players after inking a 3-year, $588,8001 contract, per Boardroom. That breaks down to an average annual value of $196,100. Toliver's one of the first known WNBA players to make this much scratch in a single season.

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She is taking full advantage of her wins. And it seems there isn't anything she hasn't achieved. Since winning the NCAA championship at the University of Maryland, she became the three-time WNBA All-Star and two-time WNBA champion. The point guard has also won 2 EuroLeague championships from her overseas games.

20. Chelsea Gray

Average Annual Value: $196,267

The WNBA just raised the bar with Chelsea Gray. Back in 2021, the Los Angeles Aces guard signed a contract for two years worth almost $400K. That’s an average annual value of almost $200K, which is pretty impressive! With Gray at the helm, the Aces are sure to be unstoppable this season.

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She has embraced the all-star status as she has displayed incredible commitment as well as excellence on the court. This should only bring big things for the WNBA. She is now a two-time WNBA Champion since she took the Las Vegas Aces to their first WNBA title. This was their first major title in franchise history.

19. Nneka Ogwumike

Average Annual Value: $196,267

Sparks F Nneka Ogwumike is definitely making it rain. In 2021, she signed a 2-year deal worth over $392,534 and an average annual value of $196,204. That's basically double what some basic 9 to 5ers get paid. All of us regular folks should bow down and give props to OP (original powerhouse) for taking the WNBA to new heights.

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This is a true sign that times are changing, and female athletes are getting their respect. In 2016, she achieved WNBA MVP for the season and won WNBA Finals the same year. She is a two-time Olympic gold medalist with four previous slalom victories at Zagreb. She also finished in second place in 2020 and 2022.

18. Sylvia Fowles

Average Annual Value: $200,000

Sylvia Fowles has blown away the WNBA records with her one-year, $200K contract for the Minnesota Lynx. For the first time in history, a female basketball player has become the highest-paid in the entire league, making an average of 200 grand per annum. We can only hope she inspires more champs to follow in her footsteps.

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Not many players have managed to achieve the same successes as Fowles. The Miami player has succeeded in two WNBA championships, two WNBA Finals MVPs, an MVP, as well as four Defensive Player of the Year Awards to go with eight All-Star victories. Today, the now-retired star has gone on to focus on motherhood.

17. Betnijah Laney

Average Annual Value: $201,984

Liberty G Betnijah Laney is setting an example for all of us on and off the court. She has secured herself a hefty contract for 2023, after last season's $196,267 salary. Her undeniable talent and passion for the game have finally been rewarded with this lucrative contract.

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She has been a consistent all-star so far and just keeps getting better, dubbed the most improved player. Now, she is using her fame for good when she launched the "Season of Giving" campaign, where teams and nine corporate partners distribute gifts to local organizations across the five boroughs for the holidays.

16. Aerial Powers

Average Annual Value: $201,984

Aerial Powers is the newest MVP player for the Minnesota Lynx and is making a huge statement with her latest contract of $201,984 for the 2023 season. Then again, it seems an average salary exceeding many pro-athletes across the country is more than earned for Powers.

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Powers has paved the way for future female basketballers and inspired other powerhouse players who unequivocally stand their ground when it comes to cash money values. For the Lynx, she helped turn around after a disappointing season when she scored 35 points and 12 rebounds in double overtime against the Phoenix Mercury.

15. Kayla McBride

Average Annual Value: $201,984

Kayla McBride is the Minnesota Lynx guard and Notre Dame alum who also signed a contract with an average annual value of $201,984, per herhoopstats. McBride has been on fire ever since she was drafted third overall in 2014 and has been actively making history since then.

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She's already been named an All-Star twice in her career, securing her legacy as a powerful young woman in basketball. With this new contract, she'll continue to ball and blaze trails for future generations. Throughout 2019, she was awarded Russian PBL Regular Season Champion, while in 2020, she was a WNBA finalist.

14. A’ja Wilson

Average Annual Value: $202,154

Back in 2022, A'ja Wilson, who plays forward for the Las Vegas Aces, signed a 2-year contract worth around $$398,000, according to several reports. Wilson is just another major element of women's sports that proves the power of female athletes and is an advocate for gender equality.

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Steve Christo - Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images

When it comes to talent and performance, this baller is a force to be reckoned with. In 2020, she won her first WNBA MVP and Olympic Gold medal in the Summer Olympics. Since joining the Aces and being their first draft for WNBA, she has led them to their first title in franchise history in 2022.

13. Kahleah Copper

Average Annual Value: $205,000

Sky G Kahleah Copper is an absolute legend. Her multi-year deal with Chicago Sky gained her a total of $400,000+ over 2 years. Miss Copper will be remembered for setting such a high-earning bar in the world of WNBA players. She forever changed the game.

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Since the Chicago Sky star marked her name in WNBA history, she won Finals MVP in 2021 and made two All-Star appearances in 2021 and 2022. Despite her head in the game, she used her status to give back to her hometown to inspire another generation of female athletes after donating $10,000 to youth. We're here for it.

12. Jonquel Jones

Average Annual Value: $205,000

When we think of professional sports, it's often wild to grasp just how much the top talent makes. But in the world of WNBA basketball, one star stands out from the rest, former Connecticut Sun forward Jonquel Jones! She signed a pricey deal, giving her an average annual value of over $200K for 2022.

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Now a part of New York Liberty, she has turned up the heat this past season (literally and figuratively). It looks like Jones' hard work is finally paying off. She became the first player in WNBA history to win MVP and was awarded Sixth Women of the Year as well as the WNBA Most Improved Player Award. Watch out for this one.

11. Kelsey Mitchell

Average Annual Value: $206,000

Kelsey Mitchell is the star player for the Indiana Fever after signing a lucrative 3-year deal worth over $618k, an average annual value of $206,000. This is breaking records for WNBA history. Kelsey's incredible talent and hard work have clearly paid off, and we couldn't be more hyped to see what she does next with this opportunity.

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Mitchell's talent is impossible to ignore in those courtside seats. In February 2018, she was named the Big Ten women's basketball player of the year by conference coaches. As well she placed in the second-team All-American in 2015, 2017, and 2018 while making a big debut for the first team in 2016.

10. Alyssa Thomas

Average Annual Value: $212,000

The Sun F Alyssa Thomas recently signed a hefty deal with a staggering average annual value of $200,000+ for 2023. Not only does this contract prove that female athletes are getting more recognition and dough for their hard work, but it also shows that Alyssa Thomas is an unstoppable force on the court.

Alyssa Thomas WNBA SalaryAlyssa Thomas WNBA Salary
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The three-time All-Star was placed in the All-America first team in 2012 and 2014 and was awarded ACC Player of the Year for three consecutive years. Oh, and did we mention she made history after taking home a win in the FIBA World Cup? “I really had no intention of playing... and now I’m a gold medalist. I almost can’t believe it,” she recalled.

9. Tiffany Hayes

Average Annual Value: $215,000/Year

It’s a dream come true for Dream G Tiffany Hayes, who, back in 2022, landed one of the biggest WNBA contracts ever - a one year at $215K. She definitely deserves it after an amazing 2020 season, which saw her get named to the All-Star team and led to this amazing deal. Now she is being financially rewarded for her dedication.

Tiffany Hayes WNBATiffany Hayes WNBA
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There's no doubting Hayes when it comes to WNBA history. As the No.14 pick, she contributed to multiple championship-caliber teams. During her eight years with the Atlanta Dream, she has proved her star quality. She is one of the most unique players today and definitely one who we wouldn't want to cross courts with.

8. Natasha Howard

Average Annual Value: $221,450/Year

Back in 2022, Natasha Howard cashed out an estimated $221,450 dollars for her multi-year deal with Liberty, as NBC Sports reported. Howard's grind clearly paid off, and if that isn't inspiring to any athlete clawing their way to success, then we don't know what is.

Natasha Howard WNBA SalaryNatasha Howard WNBA Salary
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Howard made a WNBA All-Star team and was placed in the first team for the second time while also winning the WNBA Defensive Player of the Year Award. She is constantly on the go, it is almost impossible to keep up with her winning titles. Recently, the three-time WNBA champion was acquired by the Dallas Wings in a three-team trade.

7. Brittney Griner

Average Annual Value: $227,900

Brittney Griner is providing aspiration when it comes down to financial success. In 2022, Griner signed a contract with the Phoenix Mercury, making her average annual salary value of $227,900, something many of us could only dream of. She's certainly showing that there's no limit when it comes to earning potential.

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Griner holds the title of being a two-time Olympic gold medalist with the U.S. women's national basketball team. She is also a six-time WNBA All-Star. In 2014, she was a part of the Mercury team and led them to the WNBA championship. Despite all her recent hardships overseas, she is "the best player in the world," according to coach Jim Littell.

6. Breanna Stewart

Average Annual Value: $228,094

Breanna Stewart's record-breaking $228,094 WNBA max salary contract made headlines during the 2022 season. The ever-talented Storm F recently sealed the deal with her for one year with the team, Seattle Storm. But, taking a look at her track record, she paved her way to this victory.

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In 2016, Stewart was the first overall pick in the WNBA draft and named WNBA Rookie of the Year. In 2017 she was named an All-Star in 2017, 2018, and 2021. During this time, she was the WNBA MVP while leading Storm F to two championships in 2018 and 2020. As predicted, she received the Finals MVP award both times.

5. Diana Taurasi

Average Annual Value: $228,094

G Diana Taurasi is becoming top of the league with her outstanding performances, making fierce moves on the court. She inked a two-year deal with the Phoenix Mercury, totaling $456,188, according to NBC Sports. Safe to say, Taurasi is being paid the big bucks.

Diana Taurasi WNBA ContractDiana Taurasi WNBA Contract
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She is 1 out of 11 other women to win an Olympic gold medal as well as an NCAA Championship. But it doesn't stop there, as the four-time Mercury champion won a FIBA World Cup gold and a WNBA Championship. "I want to play, and when I suck, I won't play," she told reporters of her plans for the future. "Trust me." 

4. DeWanna Bonner

Average Annual Value: $234,350

DeWanna Bonner is making history with her 4-year, $937,400 contract that averages $234,350 annually. Talk about a major box-out! This is a huge step for women's professional basketball and represents the impact of trailblazing women like Bonner. But, taking into consideration her previous winnings, this win is no surprise.

DeWanna Bonner WNBA SalaryDeWanna Bonner WNBA Salary
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Throughout her 10-year career, she is a two-time WNBA Champion, a three-time WNBA All-Star, and a three-time WNBA Sixth Woman of the Year. Bonner has managed to score 38 points on two occasions while securing 16 rebounds against Atlanta back in 2018. She has pushed herself to the limit, but it was clearly all worthwhile.

3. Skylar Diggins-Smith

Average Annual Value: $234,350

The WNBA star has set a major new record. Diggins-Smith, formerly of the Phoenix Mercury and current player of the Dallas Wings, is now the proud owner of an astounding 4-year contract worth almost $950k, per Yahoo Sports. This milestone comes on the heels of a career-high season for Skylar, as well as an increased focus from the league.

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Smith is a four-time WNBA All-Star and a two-time All-WNBA First Team honoree. The now-expecting mother has also become an advocate, speaking out for equal pay among players. "I've already reached out to a few moms," she told ESPN. "As we negotiate with the CBA, how can we improve things? It's about prioritization; we can't have everything."

2. Elena Delle Donne

Average Annual Value: $234,350

Back in 2020, this Washington Mystics' forward landed a four-year deal to stay with the Mystics, with an average annual value of $234,350. People of all ages will no doubt be keeping an eye on Delle Donne's incredibly successful career. Rumor has it she's only getting started on her journey to greatness.

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Leon Bennett via Getty Images

Delle Donne, along with the Mystics, won the WNBA championship in 2019. In 2013, she was the WNBA Rookie of the Year while drafted second overall for the league. In 2015, she was the WNBA scoring champion, while in 2016, she was a proud member of Team USA and took home a gold medal during the 2016 Olympics.

1. Jewell Loyd

Average Annual Value: $234,936

Jewell Loyd has marked her name in the WNBA league's 25-year run, and Storm G Jewell Loyd is letting her know with a price. With a two-year contract, she now has an average annual salary of $234,936. And while this makes Loyd the biggest baller on our list, fans online feel otherwise...

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According to Daily Loud, Loyd is getting paid less than half of what NBA mascot Rocky makes - $625,000. And spectators have lots to say about it. “Maybe she should quit and be a mascot,” one shaded. Nonetheless, The Seattle Storm guard has worked hard to get this far, she is untameable. And this is only the beginning for the 29-year-old.