Special Report

37 Most Successful Athletes of the 21st Century

Source: Sean M. Haffey / Getty Images

David Ortiz
> Sport: Baseball
> Championships: 3x World Series
> Team or country: Boston Red Sox
> Career length: 1997-2016
> Other accomplishments: 10x All-Star

David Ortiz helped break an 86-year-old curse on the Boston Red Sox and established himself as one of the most beloved athletes in Boston sports history. The powerful slugger won World Series with the Sox in 2004, 2007, and 2013.

Source: Stephen Dunn / Getty Images

Derek Fisher
> Sport: Basketball
> Championships: 5x NBA Championship
> Team or country: Los Angeles Lakers
> Career length: 1996-2014
> Other accomplishments: n/a

Derek Fisher was a significant contributor to all five Los Angeles Lakers championships in the 21st century. He played point guard for the Lakers in 13 of his 18 NBA seasons.

Source: Mike Ehrmann / Getty Images

Dwyane Wade
> Sport: Basketball
> Championships: 3x NBA Championship, 1x gold medal
> Team or country: Miami Heat
> Career length: 2003-present
> Other accomplishments: 13x All-Star, 2x All-NBA

Dwyane Wade has cemented his legacy as the greatest player in Miami Heat history by helping the franchise win three championships. Wade is also the Heat’s all-time leader in scoring, minutes played, steals, and assists.

Source: Bruce Bennett / Getty Images

Evgeni Malkin
> Sport: Hockey
> Championships: 3x Stanley Cup
> Team or country: Pittsburgh Penguins
> Career length: 2006-present
> Other accomplishments: 3x All-Star, 1x Hart Trophy

Though Sidney Crosby gets most of the attention on the Pittsburgh Penguins, Evgeni Malkin is an outstanding player in his own right. Malkin helped the Pens win three Stanley Cups and picked up a Hart Trophy in 2012 as the most valuable player in the NHL.

Source: Al Bello / Getty Images

Floyd Mayweather
> Sport: Boxing
> Championships: 9x world champion, 22x world title defense
> Team or country: United States
> Career length: 1996-2017
> Other accomplishments: 50-0 record, 3x Fighter of the Year

Floyd Mayweather amassed an amazing 50-0 record as a professional boxer, claiming championships in five different weight classes. He defended his world titles 22 times. After his August 2017 fight with Conor McGregor, it is estimated that Mayweather has made over $1 billion in his career.