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Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson near the top of the highest paid athletes of the last year

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Phil Mickelson, Tiger Woods — Getty Images

It didn't take long for Tiger Woods to regain his dominance over the financial golf world once he started winning golf tournaments again.

Sports Illustrated, who publishes a list of the 50 highest paid athletes of the previous year, announced this week that Tiger jumped Phil Mickelson as the number five highest paid athlete in all of sports, with Phil coming in just behind him at No. 6.

Tiger, who had been No. 1 on the list since SI started publishing them in 2004, dropped down the list last year as Floyd Mayweather reigned supreme, but the PGA Tour star with four wins already in 2013 and seven over the last 13 months is the highest paid golfer in the game once again.

Tiger earned $7.8 million on the course last year and $33 million off it, landing his total at $40.8 million. Phil Mickelson trumped Tiger in endorsement money, earning $36 million, but couldn't keep up with him on the golf course, finishing with $39.5 million for the year.

Mayweather earned all of his $90 million inside the ropes, with LeBron James coming in at No. 2 ($56.5 million), Drew Brees at No. 3 ($47.8 million), and Kobe Bryant at No. 4 ($46.8 million).

No other golfer made the top-50 Americans, but Rory McIlroy landed at No. 7 on the International list, earning $33.4 million for the year (that would have put him on No. 8 on the American list just behind Derrick Rose).

What does all this tell us? That being a successful golfer is still a pretty great job considering the money, the fact that you get to play the best golf courses in the world for free and that waiting in airport lines is a thing of the past.

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