When the phrase “for the love of the game” is used to refer to the passion that athletes have for the sports they engage in, the usual images created in one’s mind are those of athletes spending most of their hours each day practicing their craft, often sacrificing life’s simple joys in order to shape themselves into the best sportsmen that they can possibly be. Despite such extreme displays of dedication, “for the love of the game” isn’t usually uttered to refer to athletes who have lost their lives while playing the sports they love. Sadly, meeting death while playing a sport is an unfortunate fate that some sportsmen have had to suffer.
“Just for the love of the game?” might ask those who find the sacrifice of one’s life for sport an unbalanced trade. Well, while most athletes are genuinely passionate about the sports they play, and would probably still dedicate their lives to their sport for nothing more than the pure pleasure of doing so, the reality of professional sports, especially today, is that athletes earn unbelievable amounts of money for their work on the field, ice and track.
Tiger Woods, for example, according to the Forbes 2013 listing of highest-paid athletes, earned a whopping $78.1 million USD from his salary, prize money, bonuses, appearance fees, and income from licensing and endorsement deals between June 2012 to May 2013. That’s close to $214,000 USD a day.
However, in no way is accounting for the earnings of athletes who have perished in the practice of their professions meant to downplay the purity of their dedication to their sports. It must be recognized that to these sportsmen, the money they earned was a welcome bonus for doing what they loved. Yet, other athletes played at a time when sportsmen didn’t make nearly as much as they do today.
Here is a list of 10 athletes who died playing their sport. Their annual earnings are based on their latest reported income and adjusted for inflation: Click “Continue Reading“