On Friday, July 16, NBA fans and Looney Tunes fans will rejoice as “Space Jam: A New Legacy” hits theaters. The 1996 original was a blockbuster, reeling in $230 million at the worldwide box office, according to Box Office Mojo. A quarter-century later, the franchise’s second installment will try to capitalize on the success of the original by following the same theme.
Both movies involve a “Roger Rabbit”-style blending of the real world and the cartoon world by featuring the most famous Looney Tunes characters on screen with the most famous basketball player of the era. In 1996, of course, that was Michael Jordan. Today, it’s LeBron James. But they’re hardly the only stars of either installment of the “Space Jam” franchise.
Using data from Celebrity Net Worth and Spotrac, GOBankingRates pitted the NBA and WNBA big shots from both movies head-to-head in a cartoonish battle of real-world net worths.
Last updated: July 15, 2021
Nneka Ogwumike: Goon Squad (2021)
- Character name: Arachnneka
- Net worth: $910,550
- Team played for at the time of movie release: Los Angeles Sparks
The No. 1 overall pick of the 2012 draft, Nigerian-American Sparks star Nneka Ogwumike is a six-time All-Star who was chosen as the 2016 League MVP. Despite her status as one of the league’s greats, she was controversially snubbed for the Olympics in both 2016 and the upcoming Games. She is currently in a two-year, $386,817 contract that pays her an average salary of $193,409 until she becomes a free agent in 2023.
Diana Taurasi: Goon Squad (2021)
- Character name: White Mamba
- Net worth: $1,500,000
- Team played for at the time of movie release: Phoenix Mercury
The No. 1 overall pick of the 2004 draft, Diana Taurasi is one of the most accomplished and longest-serving veterans in WNBA history. A ten-time All-Star, Taurasi was named League MVP in 2009. She’s currently earning an average annual salary of $224,772 as part of a two-year, $449,544 contract with the Mercury, the team she’s been with for her entire career. The greatest scorer in WNBA history and the only player with more than 9,000 points, she got her nickname “White Mamba” from the late NBA great Kobe Bryant.
Larry Johnson: Monstars (1996)
- Character name: Bupkus Nerdluck (Purple)
- Net worth: $10,000,000
- Team played for at the time of movie release: Charlotte Hornets/New York Knicks
Larry Johnson was selected with the No. 1 overall pick of the 1991 NBA draft and went on to play 10 seasons, five with the Charlotte Hornets and five with the New York Knicks, until hanging up his sneaks in 2001. He made a splash right away when he earned a spot on the All-Rookie team and was named Rookie of the Year in his inaugural season. During his tenure in the NBA, Johnson was named to the All-NBA squad once and was chosen as an All-Star twice.
Muggsy Bogues: Monstars (1996)
- Character name: Nawt Nerdluck (Red)
- Net worth: $14,000,000
- Team played for at the time of movie release: Charlotte Hornets
Standing just 5 feet, 3 inches tall in a league where the average height is 6 feet, 6 inches, Muggsy Bogues was the shortest player in NBA history — but he’s a giant in his own right. Drafted by the Washington Bullets in the first round of the 1987 draft, the 136-pound point guard spent 14 seasons in the NBA, mostly in Charlotte. He went on to serve as the coach for the WNBA’s Charlotte Sting.
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Shawn Bradley: Monstars (1996)
- Character name: Blanko Nerdluck (Blue)
- Net worth: $27,000,000
- Team played for at the time of movie release: Philadelphia 76ers/New Jersey Nets/Dallas Mavericks
The polar opposite of Muggsy Bogues, Shawn “the Stormin’ Mormon” Bradley stands 7 feet, 6 inches, making him one of the tallest players in NBA history. The enormous center was drafted in the No. 2 overall spot in 1993. He backed up the hype by earning the title of Rookie of the Year that season. In 1996-97, no other player averaged more blocked shots than Bradley’s 3.4 denials per game.
Charles Barkley: Monstars (1996)
- Character name: Pound Nerdluck (Orange)
- Net worth: $50,000,000
- Team played for at the time of movie release: Phoenix Suns/Houston Rockets
The man known as Sir Charles is universally recognized as one of the greatest players and greatest personalities in basketball history. A first-round draft pick in 1984, Barkley’s Hall of Fame career lasted through 2000. An 11-time All-Star and 11-time All-NBA selection, he was at one point the rebound champ and League MVP. Today, he is a successful analyst, broadcaster and television personality.
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Klay Thompson: Goon Squad (2021)
- Character name: Wet-Fire
- Net worth: $60,000,000
- Team played for at the time of movie release: Golden State Warriors
Three-time NBA champion Klay Thompson has established himself as one of the best shooters in the history of the game, a fact that is reflected in his salary. The five-time All-Star and two-time All-NBA selection is currently locked in a five-year, $189,903,600 contract with the Warriors that pays him an average annual salary of nearly $38 million. He is one of the NBA’s 10 highest-paid players.
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Damian Lillard: Goon Squad (2021)
- Character name: Chronos
- Net worth: $70,000,000
- Team played for at the time of movie release: Portland Trail Blazers
Damian Lillard was unanimously selected Rookie of the Year after his inaugural season in 2012-13 — but that was just the start. He’s been voted All-NBA six times since then and he made an equal number of trips to the All-Star Game. In 2019, the eight-year veteran signed a four-year, $196 million extension that pushes his total contract to a whopping six years and $258 million for an average annual salary of $43 million a year.
Patrick Ewing: Monstars (1996)
- Character name: Bang Nerdluck (Green)
- Net worth: $75,000,000
- Team played for at the time of movie release: New York Knicks
Before Hall of Fame Knicks legend Patrick Ewing ever made it to the NBA, he took his Georgetown squad to the NCAA Championship game during three of his four years as a college superstar — he’s now the head coach of the Hoyas. The Jamaica-born center and power forward was an 11-time All-Star, three-time All-Defensive, seven-time All-NBA and Rookie of the Year.
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Anthony Davis: Goon Squad (2021)
- Character name: The Brow
- Net worth: $100,000,000
- Team played for at the time of movie release: Los Angeles Lakers
Eight-time All-Star Anthony Davis won the NBA Championship the very first year that he moved to Los Angeles. He was a four-time repeat for both All-NBA and All-Defensive. He was also All-Rookie and League MVP. He’s now at the beginning of a five-year, $189.9 million contract — 100% of which is guaranteed — for an annual average salary of nearly $38 million.
Team Net Worth Totals
- Goon Squad (2021): $232,410,550
- Monstars (1996): $176,000,000
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Methodology: For this piece, GOBankingRates examined the NBA and WNBA athletes who play the roles of the Goon Squad in the upcoming film “Space Jam: A New Legacy” and the Monstars in the original 1996 film “Space Jam.” Using data from CelebrityNetWorth.com and Spotrac.com, GOBankingRates then found each athletes’ (1) net worths and (2) the team each athlete played for at the time the movie was released. All data were collected and are up to date as of June 28, 2021.