It's no secret: Some of the world's top athletes get paid very, very well. Whether they deserve the money for playing a sport they love is anyone's opinion, but for major sports fanatics, having elite talent representing your favorite team on the field of battle is well worth the price paid for it.

But how much are top athletes from each sport taking home in a single day, or for a single game? You know what you shell out to see an event, but what are the top athletes collecting? With the help of the researchers at InvestingAnswers, we found out.

Biggest Game Checks In Sports Slideshow


Roberto Luongo: $121,951

The Canucks goalie signed a 12-year, $64 million contract extension in 2010, and will earn a reported $10 million in the upcoming NHL season. Will that pay off in the form of a Stanley Cup?


CC Sabathia: $141,975

Sabathia started his MLB career with the Indians and then after a brief stint with the Brewers, he landed a huge deal with the Yankees before the 2009 season. His current contract is for seven years and $161 million, making him the highest paid pitcher in Major League Baseball history.


Novak Djokovic: $158,348

Djokovic has already set a record for the most prize money won in a season -- $10,609,318 as of Sept. 13 -- with two months left. He won 10 times this season alone and became just the sixth male tennis player to win three majors in one calendar year.


Kobe Bryant: $304,878

Arguably the best basketball player in the game today, Kobe Bryant has a gold medal, five rings and one NBA MVP award to his name. He also made an estimated $25 million last season, which breaks down to $304,878 per appearance.


Wayne Rooney: $518,421

Rooney's 2010 contract with Manchester United easily makes him the richest man on the pitch during the English Premier League's regular-season play. Rooney is currently under contract for nearly $19.7 million a season. While he's at the top of the list of highest paid soccer players on a per-game basis, when you factor in endorsements, he falls to No. 3 behind Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.


Tom Brady: $1.125 million

On Sept. 10, 2010, Patriots quarterback Tom Brady signed a four-year, $72 million contract, which keeps him in Boston through the 2014 season. With 16 regular-season games a year, and not counting endorsements, Brady is making a cool $1.125 million per 60 minutes of American football -- tied for the top spot with Peyton Manning. Until this year's free agency signings, Brady's lucrative contract made him the highest-paid football player in NFL history.


Floyd Mayweather: $25 million

Manny Pacquiao held the top spot at $20 million, but Floyd Mayweather lived up to his "Money" moniker with his recent win over Victor Ortiz. Mayweather took home a $25 million check for that bout.

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We started with a player's total contract size (as of August 2011) as determined by what is reported by the league and other online sources. Endorsement income not included in a contract was not factored into the player's paycheck, causing some players to drop dramatically down our list.

The contract size is divided by its duration in years, giving us an annual salary. The annual salary is then divided by the number of regular season games in their respective league format.

The final number represents a paycheck for one regular season game (race, or match). Preseason, post-season and extra tournament games are not factored in, as most teams and players are compensated generously for playing and/or winning these games in addition to their salary.

As you're aware, some elite athletes on our list have eye-popping contracts, but their respective sports play far more regular season games than others, causing their "Paycheck per Game" to drop dramatically when compared to other athletes.

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