Salary Expectations For An NBA Coach
By Rebecca Rodriguez - July 20, 2022

Being the head coach of the NBA isn’t for the weak. It’s no wonder NBA coaches make a lot of money, as teaching more than 80 games in a season while coaching a group of the most paid athletes in professional sports is not an easy task. Read on to learn how much a head coach is paid at the National Basketball Association and how it compares to other professional sports.

Getty images/Boston Globe/Boston Globe / Contributor

In the 2021-22 season, the median salary for NBA head coaches was $ 3.5 million. The minimum salary for an NBA head coach is $ 25,000 per game. So if you teach all 82 games, you can make as much as $ 2 million in a single season. However, unlike NBA players, NBA coaches have no upper salary and can be as high as the coach’s request. Currently, the NBA’s highest-paying coach is Greg Popovich of the San Antonio Spurs, whose salary per season is $ 11 million. Unlike other major sports in the United States, NBA coaches are very well paid. In MLB and NHL, the highest-paid coach earns about $ 5 million, making him the 10th highest-paid coach in the NBA. The only high-paying sport is the NFL, with top coaches paying over $ 12 million.

However, the high salary of the NBA is less noticeable compared to the average salary of athletes. NBA players average over $ 8 million annually, more than double MLB players, and more than three times NHL players. Some professional leagues see head coaches as having long-standing contracts, but the NBA doesn’t offer the same employment security. The average tenure of NBA coaches with teams is 2.4 years, the lowest number in professional sports. NBA coaches are probably the most scrutinized coaches in any league. NBA coaches make the most money in terms of salary, but as long as there are coaches from other leagues, their salary is usually not guaranteed.