NBA G League Salary: How Much Do Players Earn?

The NBA G League, formerly known as the NBA Development League (D-League), serves as the NBA’s official minor league system, providing a platform for players, coaches, officials, and front office staff to develop their skills.

One key aspect that often gets overlooked is the salary structure for G League players, which plays a pivotal role in the league’s operations and players’ decisions to join. This article will delve into the G League salary, covering different pay scales, and additional forms of income available. It will also assess how G League remuneration compares to other basketball leagues globally and the NBA itself.

NBA G League Salary: How Much Do Players Earn?

Highest Paid NBA G-League Player

Determining the highest-paid NBA G League player isn’t a straightforward task as there are various contracts in the mix, such as Two-Way contracts or Select contracts. Nevertheless, traditionally, the highest earners are typically those players on Two-Way contracts.

These are players who are capable of bouncing between the NBA and G League. While in the NBA, they earn a prorated amount of the NBA minimum salary for the days they are there, and while in the G League, they earn a G League salary. This structure allows such players to potentially out-earn their counterparts who have standard G League contracts.

Minimum Salary in the G-League

The G League aims to provide an adequate professional environment for its players. The base salary for a G League player was set at $35,000 for the five-month regular season.

This amount might seem modest, especially when compared to NBA salaries, but it’s worth noting that this is merely the base pay. G League players can significantly increase their earnings through a variety of means, such as performance bonuses, sponsorships, and NBA call-ups, which can offer more lucrative paydays.

G League

G League Drafted Players

The players who get drafted into the G League are initially signed to a standard G League contract. This means they start their professional journey earning the league’s base salary. However, they have the opportunity to earn more based on their performance.

The league rewards those who excel with bonuses and also provides opportunities for NBA call-ups, which can be financially beneficial. Some drafted players may negotiate a Two-Way or Select contract, further enhancing their potential earnings.

Select Contract

Select Contracts are a recent introduction to the G League’s contract system. They are designed specifically for elite prospects who are not yet eligible for the NBA draft. These contracts offered a base salary of $125,000, which is notably higher than the standard G League contract.

Beyond the financial aspects, Select Contracts provide these prospects with a platform to compete against professional players, develop their skills, and learn from experienced coaches, thereby preparing them for the NBA.

Two-Way Player

Two-Way players are individuals who have contracts with the NBA but spend the majority of their time in the G League. These players are eligible to spend up to 45 days with their NBA team, during which they receive a prorated amount of the NBA minimum salary.

For the rest of the season, they earn a G League salary. This structure allows players to gain valuable playing experience while also having the opportunity to earn more money than their peers on standard G League contracts.

Two-Way Player

Assignment Player

Assignment Players are NBA players who are sent to the G League by their NBA team for various reasons. They could be sent to recover from an injury, to develop their skills, or to get more playing time.

These players continue to receive their full NBA salary while playing in the G League, so their income is significantly higher than that of players on standard G League contracts.

About the G League

G League

The NBA G League, often referred to as the G League, functions as the NBA’s official minor league system. It is designed as a platform for players, coaches, and officials to develop their skills before advancing to the NBA.

Moreover, it serves as a testing ground for new rules and strategies, making it an innovative and ever-evolving part of the professional basketball landscape.

How much is a 10-day contract in the NBA?

In the NBA, a 10-day contract is typically prorated at the NBA minimum salary level. This would equate to approximately $50,000 – $60,000, depending on the player’s service years in the league.

It offers players a chance to prove themselves in the hopes of securing a more long-term contract. Additionally, it provides NBA teams with a low-risk method of filling roster spots or assessing potential talent.

Is the G League profitable?

The profitability of the G League is not publicly disclosed and can vary widely from team to team. The league’s primary role is not necessarily to generate profits as a standalone entity, but rather to serve as a developmental league. Its main function is to prepare players, coaches, and officials for the NBA, and to experiment with potential rule changes.

The value the G League provides to the NBA, its teams, and its players is largely intangible and can indirectly translate into profits through the development of NBA-ready talent.

What are the bonuses in G League contracts?

Bonuses are an essential part of G League contracts, adding to the base salary that players receive. These bonuses are tied to various factors including player performance, team success, community involvement, and promotions to the NBA. The bonus system is designed to incentivize player growth and engagement within the G League system and the community it serves.

How does G League salary compare to international basketball leagues?

The base salary in the G League is usually lower than that of many well-established international basketball leagues. However, the opportunity to make it to the NBA and earn substantially more makes it an attractive choice for many players.

Also, the G League provides a direct pathway to the NBA, thereby attracting talent that is interested in playing in the highest echelons of professional basketball.

How do G League players benefit from NBA call-ups?

NBA call-ups can be a significant financial boost for G League players. When called up, players sign a contract with an NBA team, often earning a prorated portion of the NBA’s minimum salary, which is considerably higher than the G League’s base salary.

Besides the financial benefit, call-ups also offer players a chance to showcase their abilities in the NBA, potentially securing more permanent or lucrative contracts.

What’s the role of the NBA’s affiliate system in the G League?

The NBA’s affiliate system plays a crucial role in the G League. Each G League team is affiliated with an NBA team, creating a direct pathway for player, coach, and staff development.

This system allows NBA teams to cultivate talent and experiment with strategies within their own development-focused environment. It also gives G League players a clearer path to potential NBA opportunities.

NBA G League Game

Are there other income opportunities for G League players?

Yes, G League players often supplement their income with opportunities outside of their player contracts. These include local and personal endorsements, appearances, and off-season contracts with international leagues. Some players also capitalize on their notoriety to run basketball camps or sign autographs, monetizing their public image and skills.


The G League, while not as financially rewarding as the NBA, offers players a chance to earn a professional salary while developing their skills and advancing their careers. The unique structure of G League contracts, with their base salary and bonus opportunities, along with the potential for NBA call-ups, and off-court income opportunities, provides players with several avenues to earn.

The league’s affiliate system with the NBA further enhances these opportunities, offering a clear path to the NBA. Ultimately, while the monetary rewards in the G League might not be as substantial as in other professional leagues, the league’s role as a stepping stone to the NBA, coupled with its commitment to player development, makes it an essential part of the professional basketball landscape.

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About Antoine Hansen

Hi! I am Antoine, a writer for HoopsCapital!

I have been playing basketball all my life, and am excited to share my knowledge with the world!