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Messi, LeBron, Giannis: Most Marketable Male Athletes of 2023

Last Updated: November 20, 2023
Soccer & basketball athletes dominate the top five, but what about the rest? We break down 2023’s most marketable male athletes.

SportsPro recently released its 50 most marketable athletes of 2023. The list, presented in conjunction with NorthStar Solutions Group, touches 13 sports and 26 nationalities. And despite female athletes making great strides with a record 23 spots on this year’s version — including half of the top eight — let’s break down the most marketable male athletes of the last year.

But before we dive in, a quick word on how these marketability scores came about from the ones who put the list together themselves:

“Athletes are ranked according to their ‘Marketability Score,’ which is split into three distinct scoring components: Brand Strength, Total Addressable Market, and Economics. These weighted scores have been added together to generate an overall Marketability Score out of 100, with each athlete assigned a proportionate score in relation to the top performer for each metric.”

To be considered for the list, an athlete must have been active during the companies’ evaluation period from June 15, 2022-Aug. 20, 2023. From there, marketability scores were calculated through various qualitative and quantitative drivers, all of which are “weighted and comprised of comprehensive mathematical and statistical formulas pulling from multiple primary and secondary data sources.”

So who are we to argue with math? Without further ado, let’s jump into the most marketable male athletes of 2023.

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1. Lionel Messi

Nationality: Argentine
Age: 36
Sport: Soccer
Marketability Score: 94.81

2. LeBron James

Nationality: American
Age: 38
Sport: Basketball
Marketability Score: 92.75

3. Giannis Antetokounmpo

Nationality: Greek
Age: 28
Sport: Basketball
Marketability Score: 90.53

4. Lewis Hamilton

Nationality: British
Age: 38
Sport: Motorsport
Marketability Score: 89.81

5. Kylian Mbappé

Nationality: French
Age: 24
Sport: Soccer
Marketability Score: 89.00

6. Max Verstappen

Nationality: Dutch
Age: 25
Sport: Motorsport
Marketability Score: 88.22

7. Novak Djokovic

Nationality: Serbian
Age: 36
Sport: Tennis
Marketability Score: 87.96

8. Stephen Curry

Nationality: American
Age: 35
Sport: Basketball
Marketability Score: 87.09

9. Robert Lewandowski

Nationality: Polish
Age: 35
Sport: Soccer
Marketability Score: 82.96

10. Alphonso Davies

Nationality: Canadian
Age: 23
Sport: Soccer
Marketability Score: 79.98


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