Mike Tyson, one of the greatest boxers in history earned over $400M in his career, but managed to file for bankruptcy in 2003 with debts of $27M. He is not alone. Mega-stars Scottie Pippen, Johnny Unitas, Lenny Dykstra, Lawrence Taylor, and Tony Gwynn all filed bankruptcy after careers that netted them hundreds of millions of dollars.[i] How is that possible?
Ex-athletes and soldiers struggle with life after the playing field and battle field for the same reason: their careers afford them a sense of individual and collective purpose that is difficult to replace.