Foreign-Born NBA Player Salaries By Country

The globalization of the NBA continues to increase with each passing season. A foreign-born player used to be a rarity in the league, but no longer is that the case. There are currently 99 players on NBA rosters who weren’t born in the continental United States, which is roughly 22% of the league. This is a trend that shows no sign of letting up anytime soon, as teams will continue to comb the Earth to find players who can help them compete for championships.

Foreign-born players will rake in upward of $448,767,759 in cap hits for this season, which is good for an average take of $4,533,007. The highest-paid player born overseas is Marc Gasol of Spain, who is raking in an impressive $15,829,688 this season, a number that will almost certainly increase when he hits the free agent market this summer.

The top five non-U.S. countries for total player earnings are:

  1. Brazil $36,090,828
  2. Spain $36,085,358
  3. Canada $30,511,748
  4. Australia $29,332,962
  5. Italy $29,182,969

Canada holds the distinction of being the foreign country with the most players currently in the NBA, with 10, followed by Australia and France, which both have seven. The highest average salary goes to the Republic of the Congo, thanks to Serge Ibaka‘s $12.35MM salary for the 2014/15 campaign, and the fact that he’s the nation’s lone NBA export. The highest mean cap hit for a country with multiple players in the league is owned by Spain, as Spanish-native hoopsters cost their teams an average $7,217,072.

Below is a complete list, arranged alphabetically by country, of every foreign-born player currently in the NBA and their respective cap hits. Please note that the list reflects each player’s country of birth, and not necessarily his current citizenship.

Argentina

Total Salary=$14,531,460 /Average Salary=$4,843,820

Australia

Total Salary=$29,332,962 /Average Salary=$4,190,423

Belgium

Bosnia and Herzegovina

Total Salary=$9,525,262 /Average Salary=$2,381,316

Brazil

Total Salary=$36,090,828 /Average Salary=$6,010,138

Cameroon

Total Salary=$8,810,215 /Average Salary=$4,405,108

Canada

Total Salary=$30,511,748 /Average Salary=$3,051,175

Croatia

Democratic Republic of the Congo

Dominican Republic

England

Total Salary=$7,513,512 /Average Salary=$3,756,756

France

Total Salary=$28,177,904 /Average Salary=$4,025,415

French Guiana

Georgia

Germany

Total Salary=$12,916,162 /Average Salary=$4,305,387

Greece

Total Salary=$6,670,864 /Average Salary=$3,335,432

Israel

Italy

Total Salary=$29,182,969 /Average Salary=$5,836,594

Jamaica

Lithuania

Total Salary=$5,162,280 /Average Salary=$2,581,140

Republic of Macedonia

Mexico

Montenegro

Total Salary=$17,405,000 /Average Salary=$8,702,500

New Zealand

Total Salary=$4,261,960 /Average Salary=$2,130,980

Nigeria

Poland

Puerto Rico

Republic of the Congo

Russia

Total Salary=$12,792,132 /Average Salary=$3,198,033

Senegal

Slovenia

Total Salary=$11,283,250 /Average Salary=$3,761,083

South Africa

Spain

Total Salary=$36,085,358 /Average Salary=$7,217,072

South Sudan

Sweden

Total Salary=$5,415,243 /Average Salary=$2,707,622

Switzerland

Total Salary=$13,815,134 /Average Salary=$3,453,784

Turkey

Total Salary=$20,153,121 /Average Salary=$5,038,280

Ukraine

Venezuela

Virgin Islands

The Basketball Insiders Salary Pages were used in the creation of this post.

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13 thoughts on “Foreign-Born NBA Player Salaries By Country

  1. Sky14

    Canada should be third on the list, they are missing Toronto-born Andrew Wiggins and his 5.5MM salary.

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  2. shut.up.thats.why

    What sky said. Also, foreign “born” is a little misleading. Nash may have been born in Johannesburg but he moved to Canada when he was 18 month old.

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    • HoopsRumors

      Nash certainly spent more time in Canada than he did in South Africa, but at some point it becomes a question of where you draw the line. How many more years would Nash have had to have spent in South Africa for it to be more closely associated with him? Five? 10? It seems like the fairest thing to do is to go with country of birth.

      –Chuck

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      • shut.up.thats.why

        It’s hair splitting for sure and I’m not complaining. The waters may get a little more murky if it was foreign nationals vs. foreign born. interesting piece overall.

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  3. Shawn

    Jeff Ayres is born in Ontario, California NOT Ontario, Canada

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  4. kolibri 971

    1- TP plays for France …..not Belgium….
    2- Seraphin has played for France too….
    3- where is Noah ?!?…
    I think France hits #1 spot….

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    • HoopsRumors

      As we’ve said, we’re identifying players by nation of birth, not by the national team they play might for. (It’d be tough to go by national team, since some players don’t play for any national team). Noah, man of the world though he may be, was born in New York City.

      –Chuck

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  5. Shawn

    You might want to include the salaries of Francisco Garcia (Dominican) and Samuel Dalembert (Haiti) since they did play this year.

    Also, don’t forget Mexico’s Jorge Gutierrez who is on the Bucks right now

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    • HoopsRumors

      We’re choosing only to go with current players, but thank you for the catch on Gutierrez! He’s in there now.

      –Chuck

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