25. Stanley Cup Finals
> Sport/game: Hockey
> Total prize pool: $15,000,000
> Amount to winner: $3,750,000
> Est. winnings per player: $163,000
While it is very popular in Canada, NHL hockey ranks behind other major sports like basketball, baseball, and football in viewership popularity in the United States. Still, the $3.75 million payout for the Stanley Cup champions, part of the $15 million total prize pool, is considerable.
24. LoL 2019 World Championship
> Sport/game: League of Legends
> Total prize pool: $2,225,000
> Amount to winner: $834,375
> Est. winnings per player: $166,875
League of Legends is a fast-paced online game that incorporates elements of slower-paced RPG games in which two teams battle to move up in ranking. This year, 24 teams competed in a championship that was held in Berlin, Madrid, and Paris. The tournament winners took home over $834,000 of the total $2.2 million prize pool. Three of the winning team’s players were from China and two were from South Korea.
23. Intel Grand Slam Season 2
> Sport/game: Counter-Strike: Global Offensive
> Total prize pool: $1,000,000
> Amount to winner: $1,000,000
> Est. winnings per player: $200,000
People have been playing some version of the game Counter-Strike for roughly two decades. The original game, a modification of the popular late ’90s game Half-Life, quickly gained worldwide popularity. Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, known popularly as CS:GO, has renewed the franchise’s success. The five-man team that won the second season of the Intel Grand Slam earned $200,000 each.
22. WCS Global Finals (Starcraft 2)
> Sport/game: Starcraft 2
> Total prize pool: $700,000
> Amount to winner: $210,000
> Est. winnings per player: $210,000
Like Counter-Strike, the Starcraft franchise has spanned multiple versions and, as a whole, represents one of the most popular video game series in history, with widespread international adoption. In South Korea, Starcraft has been a nationally televised sport for years. In 2019, Korean player Dark won the $210,000 grand prize at the WCS Global Finals.
21. NBA Finals
> Sport/game: Basketball
> Total prize pool: $20,000,000
> Amount to winner: $2,600,000
> Est. winnings per player: $221,000
The prize awarded to the winner of the NBA Finals is more lucrative for individual players than the Stanley Cup, in part because there are fewer players to share the payout. The NBA roster is typically 15 players, compared with the 23-man roster for the NHL. Sports blogging network SB Nation estimates that each player on the winning NBA team gets a payout of about $221,000.