Like us, you’re probably surprised to hear big-name sports stars like Michael Jordan and Mario Balotelli like hitting the casino as much as they like hitting the gym. But, when you think about it, it shouldn’t be that surprising at all. A lot of the characteristics required of a top athlete – drive, discipline, an ardent desire to win – are the exact same characteristics required of a good blackjack, roulette or poker player.
And let’s not forget about the money. Big salaries, combined with prize money and all those appearance fees, allow athletes to indulge in gambling sprees most of us could only afford in our wildest dreams.
Take undefeated boxing champ Floyd Mayweather for instance. He has remained in the top spot on the Forbes List of Highest-Paid Athletes for the past four years. Casino bosses in Las Vegas have nicknamed him ‘Money’ for one simple reason: his ability to spend it on their gaming tables. Rumour has it Mayweather stakes at least $100,000 per hand when playing blackjack.
And still, he’s got nothing on Michael Jordan. During his basketball career, the NBA legend spent an eye-popping $1.25 million on gambling every year. You can find out more about Mayweather, Jordan and other sports stars in the casino by checking out the infographic below, brought to you by the guys from bgo.com.