For most athletes, winning a gold medal is the greatest reward but some elite athletes competing in the 2021 Tokyo Games have set their sights on a much larger prize.
In 1986, a decision by the International Federation allowed professional athletes to compete at the games alongside their amateur counterparts. So a bizarre phenomenon exists where the least-funded sportspeople on the planet compete with the world’s best-paid athletes.
While individual nation's Olympic committees provide monetary rewards for medal winners, (the U.S. gives $37,500 for each gold medal won at the Games) for top-level professional players, endorsements, sponsorships, salaries and other prizes amount to much more.
The list of the top seven highest-paid athletes, compiled by Forbes tracked their income from May 1, 2020, to May 1, 2021, and included both on-the-field income, (salaries, bonuses, etc) and off-the-field income, (sponsorships, licensing deals, etc).
Also, see how the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting Japan's hopes for an economic boost from the Olympics.