Earl Cureton Net Worth & Cause Of Death: What Happened To Piston Legend?

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Former NBA player Earl Cureton was a highly respected figure in the game and amassed a substantial net worth before passing in 2024.

Unfortunately, the beloved Detroit Pistons legend took his last breath in February 2024 at 66.

A storied playing career with a short stint in coaching led to Earl boasting a noteworthy net worth before his death.

Former NBA Legend Earl Cureton
Former NBA Legend Earl Cureton (Source: Yahoo Sports)

Earl Cureton was an American basketball player who won 2 NBA titles with the Detroit Pistons. Born and raised in Detroit, his legacy in the state is immortal.

In a piece of shocking news, the former Piston passed away at the age of 66 in his residence in Michigan.

Earl Cureton Net Worth 2024

To break down the net worth of the former legend, it is necessary to understand his career chronicle.

After a successful high school and college career, he was drafted in the 3rd round of the 1979 NBA Draft by the Philadelphia 76ers.

Although details of his rookie contract are unavailable, we can estimate $70,000 to $100,000 for a 3rd round pick.

Subsequently, he signed with the Detroit Pistons in 1983. In his first big contract, he took home a minimum of $200,000 annually in three years with the franchise.

However, following this, Earl became a journeyman playing for multiple franchises. He signed a $265,000 contract with the Clippers in 1987 and subsequently a $180,000 one with the Hornets in 1988.

Earl Retired In 1997 After A Year At Toronto
Earl Retired In 1997 After A Year At Toronto (Source: ESPN)

Aside from the NBA, he played in Italy, Venezuela, Argentina, Mexico, and France. Earl inked his final big contract with the Toronto Raptors in 1996.

This deal was worth $205,000 yearly, but he only played for the team for a year before retiring from basketball.

Overall, his playing career included participating in various teams, not just in the NBA but also in other countries.

After retiring, he tried his hand at coaching in the WNBA and the G-League. He also worked as an analyst for a reputed organization like ESPN.

This is to illustrate his endeavors after retiring from his playing career played a role in adding to his total wealth.

To summarize, we estimate Earl Cureton’s total net worth to be around the $2 million to $3 million mark.

His Sudden Death Has Left The NBA Dumbfounded

The former Detroit Pistons legend passed away suddenly at 66 in February 2024. According to The Detroit News, Cureton experienced a collapse on Sunday morning at his house in Farmington Hills, Michigan.

However, no cause or health issue leading to the incident was mentioned. The sudden and unexpected nature of his passing has left the basketball world in mourning.

Just a few days ago, Earl was fulfilling his radio duties, doing what he loves, talking about sports.

Following his demise, the Detroit Pistons released a statement recognizing his immortal legacy.

“The Detroit Pistons organization is deeply saddened by the passing of Earl Cureton, a person who meant so much to the organization as a colleague, former player, community ambassador, and friend.”

They further appreciated his competitive spirit on the court and his kind-hearted attitude off it.

Cureton Won 2 NBA Titles With The Pistons
Cureton Won 2 NBA Titles With The Pistons (Source: NY Post)

Moreover, his former Pistons’ teammate Isiah Thomas highlighted his contributions to the Detroit community.

“He was a tremendous teammate, tough competitor, a champion, and a great human being. Earl always held the Detroit community close to his heart and worked tirelessly to make a difference for the city he loved. He will be greatly missed.”

Suyog Tiwari
Suyog Tiwari

Suyog Tiwari

Suyog Tiwari has a natural talent for deciphering the compelling stories that take place in the sports world. Readers may gain a deeper understanding of the athletes and events that create the athletic landscape by reading his writings, which offer a compelling blend of astute analysis, entertaining storytelling, and cultural commentary.


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With a background in writing and a profound appreciation for sports as a cultural phenomenon, Suyog approaches each article with a blend of intellectual curiosity, historical perspective, and narrative flair.

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