Serena Williams may be following in the footsteps of Tom Brady as the latest athlete to return to their respective sport after mulling retirement.
“I’ve just been saying that I think Tom Brady started a really cool trend,” Williams told “Good Morning America” in September when asked about a possible return to the tennis court.
Ahead of the U.S. Open, the 23-time Grand Slam winner told Vogue that she was “evolving away from tennis,” but last week declared she was “not retired” at a TechCrunch conference.
Williams — who Forbes ranked as the third-highest-paid tennis player this year with $35.1 million in earnings — said that her chances of returning to the sport are “very high.”
- As of June 2022, Williams’ estimated net worth was $260 million.
- She has pocketed $94 million in prize money since going pro in 1995.
- Williams has also invested in over 60 startups through her VC fund Serena Ventures.
What was believed to be Williams’ last dance at the U.S. Open in September saw record-breaking viewership as millions tuned in to see one of the greatest athletes in history compete for perhaps the final time.
Williams’ third-round loss to Ajla Tomljanovic averaged 4.6 million viewers — the most-watched tennis telecast in ESPN’s history. The results were an 18% uptick from ESPN’s previous record of 3.9 million in 2012 for the men’s final.
Williams has invested in fitness-related companies, including Tonal. She is also a part-owner of the NFL’s Miami Dolphins and the NWSL’s Angel City FC.