Woods, the most powerful athlete
Tiger Woods may have seen his fortunes falling on and off the course but the golfer is still the world's most powerful athlete according to Forbes list of most powerful celebrities.
Forbes has announced its annual list of top powerful celebrities in the world that includes 19 sportspersons. Golfer Tiger Woods heads the athletes at No.6 while basketball stars LeBron James and Kobe Bryant aren't too far behind.
Tiger Woods: Its been long since the Tiger roared on the golf course and his ranking has dwindled in the last 2 years. However, even that wasn't enough to stop Woods from being the most powerful athlete in the world, taking the No. 6 spot in the powerful celebrities list. Even after taking major endorsement hits following the scandal that ended his marriage, Woods still made $22 million more than Bryant in the past year, Forbes said. (AFP Photo)
LeBron James: The basketball star had to face the music after announcing his decision to leave Cleveland Cavaliers for Miami Heat in 2010. But James continues to be a public favourite, he was placed at No. 10. His jersey was the NBA's best seller this season. Forbes listed James' earnings at $48 million, up $5 million from the previous year, and ranked him No. 2 behind only Oprah Winfrey in terms of media visibility. (AFP Photo)
Kobe Bryant: The LA Lakers star helped his side to two successive titles in 2009 and 2010, and although the team could not replicate the success in 2011, Bryant's popularity is as strong as ever. He was placed 14th and in terms of money he earned even more than James, with his earnings estimated at $53 million. Bryant's $24.8 million salary this year is $4 million more than any other player. (AFP Photo)
Roger Federer: Arguably the greatest tennis player ever, Federer may have lost out to his younger rivals, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic in the ATP rankings, but the Swiss continues to rule here and in the endorsement market. The man who has major deals with high profile brands sunch as Nike, Rolex, Wilson and Gillette took the 25th spot. (AFP Photo)
David Beckham: There is no one like Beckham. Even as the world argues over who the greatest footballer is, the former England captain continues to be the top footballer in this list year after year. With an earning of $40 million, Beckham, who is also a fashion icon, is still one of the highest paid athletes. (AFP Photo)
Phil Mickelson: The golfer has had to deal with a lot in the past 2 years, including his wife and mother being diagnosed with breast cancer one after the other and then his own psoriatic arthritis problem. He has also dropped in the golf rankings but he continues to be sponsors favourite golfer behind Tiger Woods. Mickelson's earning has been estimated at $47 million and he's tied with Beckham on 35th. (AFP Photo)
Cristiano Ronaldo: There is no stopping Ronaldo in front of the goal or in the popular and powerful chart. Ronaldo has racked up 25 million Facebook fans, more than twice as many as any other athlete. He also has nearly 3 million Twitter followers and earned $38 million last year. All these factors saw him take the 43rd spot in the Forbes list. (AFP Photo)
Rafael Nadal: The Spaniard's profile just keeps increasing with each year with new brands signing him on. His US Open victory in September 2010, at the age of 24, made him the youngest player in the Open Era to capture the career Grand Slam. He earned $10.5 million in prize money over the last 12 months. Nadal earned $31 million and occupies the 46th spot.(AFP Photo)
Alex Rodriguez: Even his admission in 2009 of using performance enhancing drugs in the past did little to damage A-Rod's popularity. The New York Yankees man continues to rake in the moolah and earned $35 million. Placed at the 49th spot, Rodriguez and the Yankees had agreed to a 10-year, $275 million contract in December 2007, the richest contract in baseball history.
Tom Brady: The two-time league MVP signed a four-year, $72 million contract extension in September with the Patriots. It is the NFL's richest deal on an annual basis. Brady is placed 55th on the list with an earning of $31 million. He is in fact placed 5 places above his equally high profile wife, supermodel Gisele Bündchen, who raked in $45 million. (AFP Photo)