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NHL Fortune: $68,861,194

Description

Mark Messier’s net worth / earnings / salary history: Earned US $68,861,194 (US $124,231,361 in today's dollars), ranking #88 in NHL / hockey career earnings.

Birthdate: January 18, 1961
Country of birth: Canada
Position: C
NHL Draft:
  • Year: 1979
  • Round #3
  • Overall Pick: 48
  • By: Edmonton Oilers

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Salary History
All amounts in US$ unless otherwise noted.
Season   Salary
(US$)
In today's
US$
NHL
Rank
1978-79 $26,000 $117,345
Earned $2,200 for playing with the Indianapolis Racers, of the World Hockey Association, until the team folded in December 1978. He never got paid. He then signed a one-year contract with the Cincinnati Stingers, of the World Hockey Association, for $26,000. (Earned $35,000 or $34,000 according to the book No One Wins Alone - A Memoir. Earned $30,000 according to the book The Rebel League)
Source: Copy of contract / Book: No One Wins Alone - A Memoir
1979-80 $42,700 $173,200
Contract in Canadian currency: $50,000. After being drafted 48th overall in the NHL draft by the Edmonton Oilers, held out during training camp wanting a four-year contract at CAN$50,000/season. The Oilers were offering either a four-year, two-way contract that would pay considerably less if sent in the minors or a one-year plus one option year, one-way contract at CAN$20,000. He ended up signing a five-year, one-way contract at $50,000 per season.
Source: Book: Messier / Book: No One Wins Alone - A Memoir
1980-81 $42,750 $152,719
Contract in Canadian currency: $50,000.
Source: Book: Messier / Book: No One Wins Alone - A Memoir
1981-82 $41,700 $135,025
Contract in Canadian currency: $50,000.
Source: Book: Messier / Book: No One Wins Alone - A Memoir
1982-83 $40,550 $123,709
Contract in Canadian currency: $50,000.
Source: Book: Messier / Book: No One Wins Alone - A Memoir
1983-84 $40,550 $119,859
Contract in Canadian currency: $50,000.
Source: Book: Messier / Book: No One Wins Alone - A Memoir
1984-85 $231,600 $656,363
Contract in Canadian currency: $300,000. In March 1984, signed a five-year contract with the Edmonton Oilers for CAN$300,000/season.
Source: The Hockey News 1985 Yearbook / Book: No One Wins Alone - A Memoir
1985-86 $219,600 $601,006
Contract in Canadian currency: $300,000.
Source: The Hockey News 1985 Yearbook / Book: No One Wins Alone - A Memoir
1986-87 $216,000 $580,151
Contract in Canadian currency: $300,000.
Source: The Hockey News 1985 Yearbook / Book: No One Wins Alone - A Memoir
1987-88 $226,200 $586,105
Contract in Canadian currency: $300,000.
Source: The Hockey News 1985 Yearbook / Book: No One Wins Alone - A Memoir
1988-89 $243,900 $607,172
Contract in Canadian currency: $300,000.
Source: The Hockey News 1985 Yearbook / Book: No One Wins Alone - A Memoir
1989-90 $837,142 $1,988,017 4
Contract in Canadian currency: $990,700. Plus CAN$42,800 in deferred payment.
Source: Canadian Press
1990-91 $824,434 $1,857,595 9
Contract in Canadian currency: $962,000. One-way contract.
Source: The Hockey News / Canadian Press
1991-92 $1,084,000 $2,343,267 13
In December 1991, signed five-year contract with the New York Rangers for $13M.
Source: Book: A Season in Time
1992-93 $2,385,000 $5,003,877 4
Amount includes salary and any signing bonus paid in 1992-93.
Source: The Hockey News / La Presse
1993-94 $2,533,000 $5,162,088 5
Includes base salary and any signing bonus and deferred payments allocated to the 1993-94 season.
Source: The Hockey News
1994-95 $3,596,059 $7,142,624 2
Because of the lockout, his NHL salary of $6,293,103 was prorated for the 48-game season.
Source: Guide Hockey 1995-1996
1995-96 $6,000,000 $11,592,072 2
(Earned $6.29M according to the book The Whalers)
Source: La Presse
1996-97 $6,000,000 $11,261,715 2
Source: La Presse / Guide Hockey RDS
1997-98 $6,015,000 $11,031,747 5
Signed a five-year contract with the Vancouver Canucks for $6M/season (Each year: $2M signing bonus, $3M salary and $1M promotional fee). Included buyout options of $2M before the 2000-01 season and a $1M before the 2001-02 season. Contract clauses included up to $ 3,000 per month for a 3-bedroom corporate apartment in Vancouver as he was living in Washington State; post-career moving allowance; fully guaranteed disability and life insurance; luxury box and 10 tickets per game if box unavailable; no trade clause; and single room on the road. Bonuses included $ 150,000 if the team participates in the second playoff round; $ 200,000 for the 3rd round; $ 200,000 for the 4th round; and $ 200,000 for winning the Stanley Cup. Also $ 250,000 if the team won the Western Conference; $ 100,000 if he made the NHL 1st All-Star Team; $ 25,000 if he made the 2nd All-Star team; $ 15,000 if he participated in the All-Star game; $ 100,000 for winning the Hart/Ross/Smythe awards; $ 25,000 for finishing second for the Hart/Ross/Smythe awards; and $ 15,000 for finishing 3rd for the Hart/Ross/Smythe awards. He did not earn any bonus except $15,000 for participating in the All Star Game.
Source: Copy of negotiating notes from Darren Rovell / Vancouver Sun / The Hockey News
1998-99 $6,015,000 $10,863,235 5
He did not earn any bonus except $15,000 for participating in the All Star Game.
Source: Copy of negotiating notes from Darren Rovell / The Hockey News
1999-00 $8,000,000 $14,138,552 6
He did not earn any bonus. After the season, the Vancouver Canuck bought out the last 3 years of the contract for $2M.
Source: Copy of negotiating notes from Darren Rovell / The Hockey News
2000-01 $4,807,037 $8,218,303 34
Includes base salary, bonuses paid in 2000-01, and deferred income paid in 2000-01. (Earned $4M according to The Hockey News Ultimate Fantasy Guide 2000-01)
Source: The Hockey News
2001-02 $5,583,530 $9,283,285 30
2002-03 $3,904,858 $6,390,873 74
Does not include signing bonuses, performance bonuses and deferred payments.
Source: La Presse
2003-04 $3,904,585 $6,248,694 82
Retired from pro hockey after the season.
2004-05 NHL lockout year: Season cancelled - no NHL salary paid.
2011-12 $6,000,000 $7,852,761 52
In the 2012 summer, an arbitrator awarded a $ 6M settlement from the Vancouver Canucks because of a clause in his 1997-98 contract stipulating that he would compensate if the value of the Canuck franchise increased over the life of his contract.
Source: Vancouver Sun
Career Total: US $68,861,194
(In today's dollars: US $124,231,361)

NHL Rank: 88
(In today's dollars: 36)

His father Doug played and coached hockey!

Contract(s) (click to enlarge)

 

Interesting animated bar chart race showing that 39 players and 1 commissioner appeared, from 1989 to 2022, in the yearly Top Ten NHL/hockey career earnings with Jaromir Jagr standing as #1 in total hockey earnings since 2002-03. How is your 401k/RSSP doing?

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