With the popularity of the WWE increasing with each passing year, the company has built itself into a multi-billion dollar organization which has the means to pay its employees pretty lavishly and recruit some of the best talents from around the world. Vince McMahon has done a lot to make WWE into a rich, vibrant wrestling promotion right now and he makes sure to reward his top stars by not only pushing them on TV but by also paying them some great salaries.
Vince is especially grateful to wrestlers who stick with the company for a long time and if they're loyal enough, they are rewarded very well in the financial department. While the average pay structure of WWE is way more than what any other promotion would shell out, there are a few wrestlers who aren't paid as well as they deserve. The salaries of some very hard-working wrestlers, in particular, are far too low, which is criminal considering how much some other superstars are getting.
A few top stars get paid way too much by the WWE because of their "star" status, which is especially cruel on those who are underpaid. Let us have a look at the 11 wrestlers who aren't paid enough and 11 wrestlers who are way overpaid.
22 Underpaid: Asuka - $250,000/year
Asuka had truly established herself as the most dominant woman in the WWE after continuing her insane winning streak in the WWE, wich unfortunately came to an end and WrestleMania 34 when "The Empress of Tomorrow" lost to Charlotte Flair. While she's being treated as the "next best thing" by the WWE in the ring, she isn't really getting her dues in real life. Asuka is only being paid a meager amount of $250,000 per year, which definitely doesn't reflect her dominance in the ring. She definitely deserves a pay-raise for the amazing work she's done for the company over the years and how she's escalated the Women's Division as well. The fact that an amazingly gifted wrestler like Asuka is getting underpaid proves how the inequality in pay in WWE is still an issue.
21 Overpaid: Kane - $900,000/year
Kane has been an amazing employee for the WWE over the decades, with the Big Red Monster leaning towards the end of his WWE career now that his political one is starting to pick up. Kane is on a part-time schedule in the WWE right now thanks to him running for the Mayor of Knox County in real life, but despite that, he's still paid handsomely by the company. Kane is currently getting paid around $900,000 a year, which is amazing considering the limited dates he's worked for the past year or so. While he has done his best in putting over talent in the past few years, paying him almost a million for rarely appearing is just the WWE showing off. Kane might be ending his WWE run soon, but he's currently getting quite overpaid by the WWE and must be a happy man because of it.
20 Underpaid: Matt Hardy - $650,000/year
Matt Hardy has truly been "Woken" in the WWE as he's shown the brilliance of his Broken Character in his feud with Bray Wyatt, where he was allowed to introduce the "Broken Universe" as well. Hardy is doing a great job with his own character and has been seemingly being given creative freedom to roll with it as well, but when it comes to actually getting paid, he isn't getting the salary he deserves from WWE. Hardy is getting about 650k per year, which might sound good but he's actually being badly underpaid. Also considering that his brother Jeff is being paid $1million a year, he should be paid equally because Matt is just as over as Jeff right now. He's also being paid a tiny 2.5% extra on the sale of his merch, as it seems WWE needs to accept Matt's "Broken Brilliance" and pay him much more.
19 Overpaid: Nikki Bella - $350,000/year
Nikki Bella was the "diva" who dominated the WWE's Divas Division a few years ago and while she did some great work back then, she's been almost invisible from work these days and can mostly be seen in reality TV shows. Nikki has gone through some terrible neck injuries which have restricted her work, but it seems that WWE is protecting her too closely. Nikki might not appear in WWE that much, but she's still being paid a handsome figure of around $300k a year. That is more than what most of the other women in WWE are getting, which shows how unfair it is for Nikki to get overpaid like this. Also, her contract is one which will get automatically renewed upon expiration, proving just how WWE loves treating Nikki lavishly for bringing the "glamour" to the Divas Division many years ago.
18 Underpaid: Nia Jax - $100,000/year
Nia Jax has proven to definitely not be like "most girls", as she's been a dominant monster heel in the WWE with the looks of a beauty. Although she defeated Alexa Bliss at WrestleMania for the Raw Women's Championship, she has spoken about some problems she's faced in the locker room as she was apparently body-shamed. It doesn't seem like the WWE stars respect her that much and neither does WWE really value her talent because they only pay her a meager salary of & 100k a year. While the women in WWE do get paid much lesser than the men, $100,000 is too low for someone as important to the Women's Division like Nia. Hopefully, WWE will increase her salary later this year after she gets more popular because Nia definitely deserves a bigger salary than this.
17 Overpaid: Bray Wyatt - $1 million/year
Bray Wyatt hasn't really had the most eventful of 2018 so far as he's been in some very underwhelming feuds as of late but his new face turn teaming up with Matt Hardy might change that. Wyatt has been loyal to the WWE despite the company using him as a stepping stool for many wrestlers, but one thing about which Wyatt will be happy is that he's getting paid very lavishly by the WWE. Wyatt is apparently getting $1 million a year which is really something for someone who is mostly stuck in the mid-card. One could say that Bray is definitely getting overpaid by the WWE, who don't even pay better wrestlers like Kevin Owens or Samoa Joe that much! It seems like WWE appreciates how Wyatt puts over wrestlers for them but paying him such a big amount is just unnecessary.
16 Underpaid: AJ Styles - $3.5 million/year
"The Phenomenal" AJ Styles walked out of WrestleMania 34 as WWE Champion, as he earned the opportunity to do so after having a terrific 2017 with WWE and helping the Smackdown brand get even more popular. Styles is getting pushed really hard as a "top guy" in WWE and being held in really high regard, but the company doesn't show that dedication towards him when it comes to paying him. While Styles does earn a lavish $3.5 million a year, one can say it isn't enough considering the amount of hard work he puts in for the company. Considering that other "top guys" like John Cena & Roman Reigns get much more than him, Styles definitely deserves more from the WWE for his phenomenal work which has elevated the level of Smackdown in the past few years.
15 Overpaid: Brock Lesnar - $10 million/year
Brock Lesnar is on the verge of leaving the WWE this year, as his contract situation is very murky at the moment. Lesnar faced Roman Reigns in the main event of WrestleMania 34 and actually defeated him, but Brock is acting very difficult to reason with right now. It seems he wants even more money from WWE to sign another contract, which is bizarre considering he is already being overpaid by getting $10 million a year in WWE. Lesnar rarely makes appearances and wrestles only a few times in the year but is the highest paid wrestler in WWE by a long margin, proving how desperate WWE are at keeping him. They probably realized their mistake at overpaying him and are playing hard-ball with him now, which could mean Lesnar leaving WWE quite soon.
14 Underpaid: Kofi Kingston - $500,00o/year
Kofi Kingston has been part of the WWE for almost a full decade now as the entertaining part of the New Day has won a lot of things in his career so far. While Kingston has reveled as part of the Tag Team Division and done some amazing things for WWE over the years, it doesn't seem like they still hold him in high regard for his loyalty to the company. Kingston is currently on a three-year contract with the WWE where he only gets paid around $500k a year despite having to work almost every day of the week for the company. He gets a 3.5% extra fee for appearing in main-PPV event matches, but that doesn't cut it for someone as talented and devoted like him. He's definitely being paid too less by the WWE, who need to treat a devoted talent like Kofi better.
13 Overpaid: R-Truth - $550,000/year
R-Truth has been almost invisible from WWE TV in 2018 so far as he has yet to wrestle a match on Monday Night Raw in this year. While Truth did get some of the limelight after he started to team up with Goldust last year and had a short stint with him, but he's gone off the radar recently and doesn't appear on TV at all. It doesn't mean that he isn't on WWE's payroll because Truth is getting paid quite the handsome salary by WWE so that he can enjoy his personal life. Truth is actually getting around $550,000 a year and also earns 5% on the sale of his merchandise, which is WWE really overpaying him. He doesn't wrestle nor appears in any significant segment for WWE, so it's rather surprising that they're paying him so much just because he's been an ideal employee for them.
12 Underpaid: The Usos - $250,000/year
The Usos picked up their game and absolutely amazed everyone with their change in gimmick last year, which brought a different vibe to them which everyone loved. Since then, Jimmy and Jey Uso have been on a roll as they've been the best tag team in WWE and arguably the best tag team in the world with their amazing work recently. Even after doing such incredible work in WWE, The Usos are still terribly underpaid by their employers who only pay them $250,000 a year each. Considering that some of the other tag teams get much more than what they do, The Usos definitely deserve a raise from the WWE because of how amazing they've been for them over the years. WWE is seemingly taking them for granted and reaping out everything they have whilst under-paying them, and they need to appreciate their talent and pay them accordingly.
11 Overpaid: The Big Show - $850,000/year
The Big Show is another veteran who looks to be nearing the end of his wrestling days, with the Giant planning on making one grand return to the company before riding out into the sunset. The Big Show has been a terrific employee for the WWE, who have used his size and intimidating nature to good use by putting over many wrestlers through him and also giving the big man much success over the years. While Show might've become a part-timer in the WWE in the past year or so, he's still being paid very well by WWE who are really over-paying him by giving him around $850k a year. While he has been a great employee for WWE, Show doesn't deserve getting this large amount at this point of his career as WWE are really spoiling him by giving him this huge salary despite doing little work.
10 Underpaid: Cesaro - $500,000/year
Cesaro has been a fantastic member of the Tag Team Division ever since he started teaming up with Sheamus, who was his enemy before Mick Foley put them together. Cesaro has been doing great as part of The Bar and the two have won the Raw Tag Team titles multiple times as well. Cesaro has been in WWE for many years now, but he's still not being regarded as a top star and is getting a very disappointing salary as well. He's only being paid $500,000 a year which is too low for someone as talented and devoted to the company as him. Cesaro puts up great matches whenever he steps into the ring and considering that his partner Sheamus gets almost a million dollars per year, Cesaro definitely deserves an increased salary now.
9 Overpaid: Dana Brooke - $200,00/year
Dana Brooke has been pretty underwhelming ever since making her main roster debut and has failed to establish herself as the powerful, dominant woman she was at NXT. After her stint as Charlotte's understudy, Brooke has rarely been in relevant feuds with the other women and has just fallen off the grid in the Women's Division. That forced WWE to make her a part of "Titus Worldwide" where she'd play the role of an accountant of sorts. Despite her poor work, Brooke has been earning a lot of money and gets around $200k per year, despite not even being a big star. She gets paid more than more hard-working women like Nia Jax and Carmella and the same as Bayley! Dana is a lucky woman to be on WWE's good books, as the company really treats her well by overpaying by quite a lot.
8 Underpaid: Kalisto - $350,000/year
Kalisto has been a great luchador for the WWE in the past few years and he's dazzled everyone with his high-flying wrestling style. He's currently one of the top faces of 205 Live! and has helped to glitter up the division after making his debut, but the former United States Champion isn't really getting paid the salary he deserves from WWE. Kalisto is a really hard-worker for WWE and wrestles for them almost every-day of the week and is also a hit amongst the fans as well. He's only earning a meager $350,000 a year which is too less for someone as talented and devoted to him. Many wrestlers who don't wrestle as much as him are getting paid way more, as the WWE is seriously underpaying this talented luchador who has been a really devoted employee for them since day one.
7 Overpaid: Sin Cara - $700,000/year
Sin Cara has seemingly vanished from the fray in the WWE after getting a promising push last year in November when he challenged Baron Corbin for the US Title but failed to capture the gold from him. Cara might be someone who hardly makes appearances in WWE TV and is restricted to the "B-Shows", but he's making more money than many wrestlers to be performing in the "A-Shows". Shockingly, Sin Cara is actually being paid around 700k a year by the WWE after his new contract with the company! That is more than many of the mid-carders in the WWE and its bewildering to discover that WWE would pay him so much! It seems that WWE is desperate to keep the "unique" gimmick of Sin Cara alive and are massively overpaying the wrestler to make sure it remains theirs.
6 Underpaid: Tyler Breeze - Starting Package (About 100K/year)
Tyler Breeze has actually been a really entertaining package on Smackdown Live! as part of Breezango, who have made for some hilarious segments with their "Fashion Files" show. Breeze didn't really have the best of stars to his main roster career but now looks settled as a decent lower-mid carder who is popular because of his antics in the Fashion Files segment. Now Breeze has been on the main roster for almost three years now, so it's shocking to learn that he is still on the base starting package in WWE. That probably means he's paid around 100k a year, which is really too less for even a lower-mid carder like him. Also considering that his partner Fandango is paid probably more than twice his amount, it's unfair to Breeze getting so badly underpaid by the WWE and deserves a full-time contract for his impressive work recently.
5 Overpaid: Dolph Ziggler - $1.4 million/year
Dolph Ziggler's future in the WWE was up in the air a few months back when it looked like he was on the verge of leaving the company, but WWE somehow made him stay by offering him a bumper contract. Ziggler has done well since returning back to WWE a month or so back, but he's definitely a happy man in real life because of how much he's getting paid by the WWE right now. So "The Showoff's" current contract sees him earn a whopping $1.4million a year and he has some great perks with that as well. Ziggler also makes 3.5% extra from merchandise sale and also 250k from main-event appearances and he also has the right to leave the arena right after finishing his match. He can also take time off to do stand-up comedy on the side, with these proving how desperate WWE was to retain him.
4 Underpaid: Shinsuke Nakamura - $400,000/year
Shinsuke Nakamura earned his opportunity to have the "dream match" against AJ Styles at WrestleMania after winning the Royal Rumble this year and finally getting the key moment he deserved on the main roster, but at the Show of Shows, the match unfortunately didn't live up to expectations and he turned heel. The former NXT Champion might be getting some top-star treatment from WWE, but he's still a really underpaid wrestler after making the jump to the main roster. As it goes, Nakamura is only getting around $400k a year which is terrible for a main-event star like him. There are many mid-carders who get more money than Nakamura and even though his contract was made permanent recently and he will get a share of the PPV revenue, this initial salary is too low for him. Hopefully, WWE realizes their error and gives him a big raise some-time into the future because he definitely deserves earning more money than what he is right now.
3 Overpaid: Jinder Mahal - $900,000/year
Jinder Mahal had quite the fantastic 2017 in the WWE where he shocked everyone by winning the WWE Championship and held the title for a few months in what was an impressive reign. Mahal is now looking to capture the US Title as the WWE aims to keep him in relevant feuds after his success, as Mahal really seems to have impressed management. Not only did they push him on TV, but Mahal was also given a bumper contract for his great work and come back in the company. Mahal apparently is on a $900,000 per year contract which is huge for someone like him and shocking for the fans to hear. Mahal earns more money than many "bigger" stars than him, even making bonus money from PPVs and it seems like he got so over in the eyes of management that they decided to grossly overpay him.
2 Underpaid: Braun Strowman - $300,000/year
Braun Strowman has been a one-man destruction machine in the WWE over the past year or so and has done everything in his power to cause carnage and get himself over with the fans. Strowman (and his partner Nicholas) beat The Bar for the Raw Tag Team Championships at WrestleMania 34 and seems to be in the good books of management who just won't stop him getting pushed in the company. While WWE values Strowman very much because of his performances, that doesn't really show in his salary as the "Monster Among Men" only gets paid about $300k a year. That is too low for someone like Strowman, as he's paid much less than some of the lower-mid carders. Braun deserves a big raise very soon and is given the same as some of the other big stars, as WWE would want to keep him happy in the long run.
1 Overpaid: Ronda Rousey - $1.5 million/year
Ronda Rousey's signing was a massive deal made by the WWE, who has really elevated the reputation of their "Women's Division" by signing the former UFC star, who made her awesome in-ring debut at WrestleMania 34. Rousey is still getting the hang of things in the WWE and while WWE's popularity was increased after this move, it's a bit unfair to them paying Rousey much more than their own women. Rousey apparently earns a whopping $1.5million a year, which is almost three times what Charlotte Flair (the previous top-earning woman) gets. While WWE needs to improve their equality in pay, overpaying Rousey like this sends the wrong message to the other women. Giving her such a big amount of money as well as special treatment such as free travel and PPV revenue is harsh on the other women and doesn't really comply with their "equality" program either.
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