How much do NBA floor cleaners make?

Steve Nash came so close to leading the Suns to a title
Photo by Ross D. Franklin-Pool/Getty Images

When describing a big win, one sometimes uses the phrase “you mopped the floor with them,” which just basically means that person beat the other person really badly. But in the NBA, that floor is in pristine condition before the other team gets beat because of some hard working individuals whose job it is to clean it. So how much do these unsung heroes make? Before we tackle that, let’s take a brief look at the history of basketball and the NBA.

The history of basketball

Basketball was invented in 1891 by a graduate student studying physical education at Springfield College, James Naismith. As with many things, basketball came about because of necessity. During the cold Massachusetts winter months, the students needed something to keep them physically active indoors. So the innovative Naismith came up with a game to do just that. The original nets and baskets were actually peach baskets nailed to the gym’s balcony. 

The first publicly attended game occurred the next year on March 12th, 1892 at the YMCA where it was invented. It was a competition between students and their teachers. From there the popular game quickly spread to other schools and by 1905 it was officially recognized in high schools as a permanent winter sport.

The history of the NBA

The first professional basketball league was called the National Basketball League also known as the NBL. It was formed in 1898 and was made up of 13 teams located in the northeast. It was short-lived, lasting only five years, but it would pave the way for the NBA as we know it today. It would make a comeback in 1937 and eventually merged with the NBA.

The National Basketball Association was formed in 1949 when the NBL and the Basketball Association of America joined forces. The league began with 17 teams and while its financial history was not always smooth, it eventually became what we know today.

Support Staff

It takes a surprising number of people to run a successful NBA team. There are the positions that one thinks of right away like players, coaches, and trainers, as well as the lesser-known positions such as massage therapists, media liaisons, psychologists, dentists, and floor cleaners.

Floor Cleaners

Floor cleaners in the NBA make a decent salary. The average salary for an NBA floor cleaner is $80,000. Salary is based on seniority and the team the floor cleaner is working for. Entry-level rookie cleaners make $39,000. This goes up to $80,000 after a couple of years experience. After five years, it has the ability to go up to $95,000. 

There are also added perks of being an NBA floor cleaner. One is not working a boring 9-5 type job. One is being close to the game of basketball and all the excitement that brings. But it also is a lot of hard, important physical work. It is not easy keeping up with all the sweat, drool, and sometimes even blood spilled on those court floors. Maintaining clean floors helps keep players safe and prevents injuries.

How to Apply

If being an NBA floor cleaner appeals to you, you can check out Linkedin, Indeed, and the NBA website for job listings. It is a highly sought-after job so make sure your resume is up to date.