The amount represents 79.7 percent of the $30.5 million he is due to receive in compensation for the 2013-14 season.
While some players get paid every two weeks during the season, others get paid twice a month year round. A select few, including Bryant, receive lump-sum payments like the $24,363,044 he'll receive Friday.
The league's old collective bargaining agreement provided that this up-front compensation could be up to 80 percent of the contract's annual worth. That type of payment plan was amended in the new CBA, but Bryant's deal was grandfathered in. Instead, the new CBA allows provisions to pay a player as much as 25 percent up front.
Bryant's total take home of the $24.3 million check is subject to heavy taxes, which could total as much as 55 percent of his salary. That would reduce his take-home pay to closer to $11 million, according to Robert Raiola, a certified public accountant who heads up the sports and entertainment group at FMRTL in Cranford, N.J.
In his tax bracket, Bryant is subject to paying a federal tax at the top rate of 39.6 percent, which would mean $9.6 million will be withheld by Uncle Sam. As a California resident, he's subject to paying an additional 13.3 percent, or $3.2 million, in state taxes. California has the highest state income tax in the United States. The Medicare tax and surcharge would reduce his total take to about $10.9 million, Raiola said.
Bryant will pay so-called "jock taxes" to states in which he plays on the road. But those payments will be credited toward his California income tax.
Bryant's salary this season is the second-largest salary in NBA history, behind the $33.1 million Michael Jordan made in 1997-98.
Although Bryant is out indefinitely recovering from an Achilles tendon tear, his salary is fully guaranteed. The timetable for his return is unknown.