As crazy as it might sound, former President Donald Trump may have just been revealed as the highest-paid single-event broadcast analyst ever. Yes, you read that correctly.
According to USA Today, the 45th President of the United States received a lucrative $2.5 million to call a 2021 fight between Evander Holyfield and former UFC champion Vitor Belfort. That was revealed in a revised personal financial disclosure from Trump, who once said that he was being paid an “obscene” amount to provide color commentary on the bout between Holyfield and Belfort.
Here are more details from that article, penned by Simon Samno:
Trump’s filing, which was made public Thursday, sheds details on his roughly $1 billion in earnings since he left office, much of it through speaking engagements and appearances, along with foreign business dealings. It also gives a sense of just how much money Triller poured into its boxing promotion, which it shut down about a year later in September 2022.
It’s important to reference here, that some of the highest-paid people in the sports broadcasting industry are not receiving the same amount of money. Troy Aikman and Tony Romo receive $18 million a season from ESPN and CBS, respectively, for what appears to be a maximum of 22 regular and postseason games per season (with that max coming if their respective network is the home for that year’s Super Bowl). In years without the Super Bowl, Romo will work a maximum of 21 games through the conference championship, making more than $850,000 per game. In years without the Super Bowl, Aikman will work a max of 20 games through the divisional round, making more than $900,000 per game. (This is just their contract divided by regular season and postseason games, and does not count preseason work or other work for the network).
That’s just Romo and Aikman. Now factor in Tom Brady, who is set to make $375 million over 10 years when he officially joins the broadcast booth at Fox. That’s $37.5 million per year or $1.78 million per game in years with 21 games. (But it should be noted that Brady’s contract includes a lot of non-game promotion work for Fox, which is not factored in here.)
So, with those “obscene” numbers, Trump is well ahead of perhaps the three highest-grossing color commentators in the sports broadcasting industry. And that’s for just one event.
During the four-fight main card at the Seminole Hard Rock in Hollywood, Florida, Trump provided the color commentary. Belfort made quick work of Holyfield in a first-round TKO. The main card event lasted just under two minutes. So, Trump didn’t exactly have to wade through four quarters, and he still walked away with $2.5 million in the bank.
While he hasn’t provided color commentary on an event since, Trump has notably attended several live UFC events. The former president is a longtime friend of UFC president Dana White, and is a noted fan of combat sports. But it’s hard to imagine that anyone will beat that $2.5 million mark for an event anytime soon.