Considering what the job asks of you, I think the pay is completely resonable. These guys play 82 games every year excluding the playoffs, are on the road alot, and generate alot of money. It's not easy doing what they do, so I think the pay is justified.
The entertainment industry has always taken high priority over every other sector of work, in our society. I personally cannot blame the players. Someone throws that kind of cash my way, I'm gonna accept. I blame the owners. Noone makes them shell out that kind of dough, but they are a paranoid lot.
As long as people are willing to pay to see them perform, then this will never change.
and each area has its own world of payments:
is adam sandler worth $20 mil a film?
it's not what one is worth, it is what one can negotiate (rashard lewis included)
paying people these huge amounts is really about speculation that they will help those who are doing the financing to make even MORE money
They're not paid because their skills do good for the world but because their skills are unique. You may think a Doctor is more important than Kobe or Tim Duncan... well how many doctors do you know? How many NBA MVPs do you know?
Blame the free market I guess. At least there's something like max salaries and a salary cap in the NBA, for what it's worth. The value of entertainment/sport business has exponentially increased the last decade, which explains the global salary increase.
Athletes salaries are easily justified if you think in terms of economics. Pro athletes are highly productive at producing entertainment, and demand for this entertainment is very high. Millions of people around the world pay billions of dollars over the course of a season. The amount of money that somebody like Kobe or LeBron generates for a team is much higher than what he is paid.
We recently had the Bogut topic, we saw what Rashard Lewis got in the off-season, I hate soccer but I just saw the details of Ronaldos offer from Real Madrid ($560,000 PER WEEK AFTER TAX!!!).
Who can justify these salaries?!? It is really getting out of control!!! These people don't further our progress as humans, don't solve world problems, don't protect us as we sleep. What is the deal? Okay, rant over.
So who else should get the money from the tickets, mechandise and tv deals? The only athletes that get paid outrageous money are the ones in sports that have the fanbase to support it.