Former and current professional athletes have taken that hard-earned cash and invested it in sports franchises. Take a look at some of the notable athletes who have joined the business side of the sports world.
Former NBA player Magic Johnson owned a 4.5% share of the Los Angeles Lakers that he sold in 2010. In 2012 Johnson joined a group of investors who took up ownership of the Los Angeles Dodgers. As first reported by Sam Amick of USA TODAY Sports, the Kings announced Monday that former NBA player Shaquille O'Neal has joined Sacramento's new Vivek Ranadivé-led ownership group as "a minority owner. Tennis players Venus and Serena Williams are limited partners in the ownership group of the Miami Dolphins. They own shares of the team with majority owner Stephen Ross. NBA legend Michael Jordan held a partial share of the Charlotte Hornets for four years. In 2010 Jordan became the majority owner of the team. Jordan is the first former player to become a majority owner of an NBA franchise. Former MLB pitcher Nolan Ryan is part of the ownership group, Rangers Baseball Express, that owns the Texas Rangers. Ryan holds a minority stake in the team. In 2001 former NHL player Wayne Gretzky joined forces with Steve Ellman and Jerry Moyes to gain ownership of the Phoenix Coyotes. In 2009 the NHL took control of the team due to financial problems. Former NFL running back Warrick Dunn became a minority owner of the Atlanta Falcons in 2009. Dunn has a minority stake in the Falcons’ ownership group that is led by majority owner Arthur M. Blank. Former NHL player Mario Lemieux has been a co-owner of the Pittsburgh Penguins for 14 seasons. LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 14: (THE SUN OUT) American basketball player LeBron James, a minority stakeholder of Liverpool FC, visits Anfield stadium, the home of Liverpool Football Club on October 14, 2011 in Liverpool, England. (Photo by Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images) In 2008 AEG announced a partnership with former boxer Oscar De La Hoya in the ownership of the Houston Dynamo. Former NBA player Yao Ming played for the Chinese Basketball Association’s Shanghai Sharks before coming to play in America. Now that he is retired from the NBA he is the owner of the Sharks.