Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Net Worth 2022 – Salary, Income, Earnings

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Net Worth 

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar has an estimated net worth of $20 million. Hall of Fame basketball center Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is the NBA’s all-time leading scorer. He won six NBA titles, five with the Los Angeles Lakers, over 20 years. He earns most of his income from playing basketball, brand endorsements, and movies. 

A dominant high school basketball player, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was recruited to UCLA and led the Bruins to three national titles. His dominance continued in the NBA, first for the Milwaukee Bucks and later for the Los Angeles Lakers. Abdul-Jabbar won six titles and six MVP awards and became the league’s all-time leading scorer. He retired in 1989 and is widely considered one of the greatest players in NBA history, and his talent was celebrated in high school.

To calculate the net worth of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, subtract all his liabilities from his total assets. Investments, savings, cash deposits, and any equity he has in a house, car, or other similar asset are included in the total assets. All debts, such as personal loans and mortgages, are included in total liabilities.

Here’s the breakdown of his net worth:

Name: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
Net Worth: $20 Million
Monthly Salary: $200 Thousand
Annual Income: $5 Million
Source of Wealth: Basketball player, Actor, Author, Basketball Coach, Screenwriter, Film Producer

Early Life and Education

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was born Ferdinand Lewis Alcindor Jr. on April 16, 1947, in New York City. The only son of Ferdinand Lewis Alcindor Sr, a New York City police officer, and his wife Cora, Alcindor was always the tallest boy in his class.

As Lew Alcindor, he was an impressive six feet tall by age nine, and by the time he entered eighth grade, he had grown another full foot and could already dunk a basketball.

He began playing the sport at a young age. At Power Memorial Academy, Alcindor put together a high school career that few could match. He set New York City school records for scoring and rebounds while leading his team to an astounding 71 straight wins and three straight city titles. In 2000, Alcindor’s team was named “The #1 High School Team of the Century” by the National Sports Writers.

College Career and John Wooden

Alcindor enrolled at the University of California-Los Angeles after graduating in 1965. There, he continued his unrivaled dominance, becoming the best player in the college game.

Alcindor led the Bruins to three national championships under legendary coach John Wooden from 1967 to 1969 and was named the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Tournament’s Most Outstanding Player in those years.

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Milwaukee Bucks

In only their second year of existence, the Milwaukee Bucks selected Alcindor with the first overall pick in the NBA draft in the spring of 1969. Alcindor quickly adapted to the professional game. He was named Rookie of the Year after finishing second in the league in scoring and third in rebounding.

He also significantly improved the fortunes of his franchise. Following a disappointing 27-win season the previous year, the retooled Bucks improved to 56-26 with Alcindor at the helm.

The Bucks made another huge leap the following season after adding future Hall of Fame guard Oscar Robertson to their roster. The team went 66-16 during the regular season and then dominated the playoffs, sweeping the Baltimore Bullets in the 1971 NBA finals. That same year, Alcindor received his first Most Valuable Player award, the first of six in his long career.

Conversion to Islam

Alcindor converted to Islam shortly after the 1971 season ended and took the name Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, which translates as “noble, powerful servant.”

In 1974, Abdul-Jabbar led the Bucks back to the NBA finals, where they were defeated by the Boston Celtics.

Los Angeles Lakers

Despite his on-court success as a Buck, Abdul-Jabbar struggled to find happiness in his life in Milwaukee.

In an early magazine interview, he asked, “Do you live in Milwaukee?” “No, I suppose you could say I am present in Milwaukee. I am a soldier hired for service, and I will do my job well. Basketball has provided me with a comfortable lifestyle, but this town has nothing to do with my roots. There is no middle ground.”

After the 1975 season, Abdul-Jabbar demanded a trade, requesting that the Bucks send him to either New York or Los Angeles. He was eventually shipped west for a package of players, none of whom came close to delivering what Abdul-Jabbar would deliver for the Lakers.

Abdul-Jabbar transformed Los Angeles into a perennial winner over the next 15 seasons. Beginning in 1979-80, when he was paired with rookie point guard Magic Johnson, the dominant center led the Lakers to five league titles.

The skyhook, Abdul-signature Jabbar’s jump shot, became an unstoppable offensive weapon for the Lakers, who won championships over Julius “Dr. J” Erving’s Philadelphia 76ers, Larry Bird’s Boston Celtics, and Isiah Thomas’ Detroit Pistons.

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Hollywood Calls

His success on the court landed him some acting roles. Abdul-Jabbar appeared in several films, including Game of Death, a 1979 martial-arts film, and Airplane!, a 1980 comedy.

Even in his 30s, he managed to average more than 20 points per game. He was still playing around 35 minutes per game in his late 30s. The 38-year-old Abdul-Jabbar was named series MVP in the Lakers’ six-game victory over the Boston Celtics in the 1985 finals.


When Abdul-Jabbar retired in 1989, he was the NBA’s all-time leading scorer with 38,387 points and the first player in NBA history to play for 20 seasons. In his career, he had 17,440 rebounds, 3,189 blocks, and 1,560 games.

In 1989, he also set records for scoring the most points, blocking the most shots, and winning the most MVP awards.

Abdul-Jabbar seemed especially proud of his longevity years after his retirement. “The ’80s compensated for all the abuse I endured in the ’70s,” he told the Orange County Register. “I outlived all of my detractors. When I retired, everyone regarded me as a venerable institution. Things do shift.”

Post-Playing Life

Since his retirement, Abdul-Jabbar has remained active in basketball, working for the New York Knicks and the Los Angeles Lakers. He even spent a year as a coach on the White Mountain Apache reservation in Arizona, which he documented in his book A Season on the Reservation, published in 2000.

He has written several other books, including On the Shoulders of Giants, about the Harlem Renaissance, published in 2007. Abdul-Jabbar has also worked as a public speaker and product spokesperson. Abdul-Jabbar was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1995.

Abdul-Jabbar was diagnosed with a rare form of leukemia in November 2009, but his long-term prognosis appeared promising. Doctors declared the retired NBA star cancer-free in February 2011. Abdul-Jabbar was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2016 by President Barack Obama.

In the spring of 2018, the basketball legend joined the cast of Dancing with the Stars: Athletes, proving he was still athletic enough to compete at the age of 71. He was paired with reigning champion Lindsay Arnold. He also continued to demonstrate his talent for persuasion, writing an essay about the complicated issue of firing Roseanne Barr for her racist tweet, as well as another about the increasing appearances of socially conscious villains in popular entertainment.

Personal Life and Children

Abdul-Jabbar is the father of five children, four from his first marriage to Habiba Abdul-Jabbar and one from another relationship.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Quotes

You can’t win unless you learn how to lose.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar


One man can be a crucial ingredient on a team, but one man cannot make a team.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar


I try to do the right thing at the right time. They may just be little things, but usually they make the difference between winning and losing.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar


I think that the good and the great are only separated by the willingness to sacrifice.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar


You can’t win if you don’t play as a unit.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar


You have to be able to center yourself, to let all of your emotions go… Don’t ever forget that you play with your soul as well as your body.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar


I saw Islam as the correct way to live, and I chose to try to live that way.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar


I tell kids to pursue their basketball dreams, but I tell them to not let that be their only dream.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar


The word ‘leukemia’ is a very frightening word. In many instances, it’s a killer and it’s something that you have to deal with in a very serious and determined way if you’re going to beat it.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

View our larger collection of the best Kareem Abdul-Jabbar quotes.

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Kareem Abdul-Jabbar did not become rich by luck. To become as rich as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, you have to work smart.

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