I am in the middle of the road with this one. I believe people that play any sport whether in school or professionally are naturally competitive in nature; they play to win and no one likes to lose. Granted, the thoughts of high payments give an even greater means of motivation to play hard.
Players now and days of any sport get paid well over a typical person. They just do it for the money, and although there are some good ones out there, I believe that most of them are obsessed with wealth and have no right playing a game that they only play for money.
I hate to say it but nowadays professional sports have turned into a realm of money making. Sure competition is there, but I would argue that the majority of the athletes who play professionally are now hooked into being there because of the hefty pay checks they receive. The owners use players in order to sell their paraphernalia, advertisers use athletes in order to promote their products, and billboards are all over the stadiums trying to influence the crowds. The athletes may have a fit if salaries were lowered to the “minimum wage” a player legally has to be paid even though 400K is more than enough to support a family.
The people who play professional sports do not do it for the money. College athletes are not paid, and the pros were mostly previously college athletes. I understand that some may be caught in that loop but the majority play for the love of their sports. You can't make a generalization from a few people's bad mistakes.
The goal of sport today is more about making money than about the competition. The teams already make quite a bit of money and than they make more off the great new players and sign the ones who have the most potential to make them a lot of money, it is less about people being competitive.
These days, most professional athletes are in it for the money as well as for their own fame and celebrity. They may enjoy the competition and be truly qualified but they are not satisfied with just playing a good game. They want excessive money to do so as well as money for product endorsements and such.
The goal of sport nowadays is purely a money maker. Teams continue to play the same teams over and over again and the main reason is purely the money that they bring into the ballgame literally. Sports is big bucks for everyone involved including the athletes that are paid for sponsorships and for being on the court.
Sports are no longer seen as a competitive outlet and are mostly used to make money for the athletes, the advertisers, and the venues. It doesn't matter how talented an athlete is if they are not marketable they will be passed over for an athlete who is. It does not matter if the athlete is a criminal, not very talented, or just a repugnant human if the fans fill the seats and buy the merchandise the athlete will be paid well and touted as the most awesome thing ever.
I do not believe sports have been entirely turned into a money making business. Sports and money have always been tied closely together and I do not believe that will change in the future. The spectators, who watch the sports, require competition or they would not attend the sports games. Therefore, I do not believe it is possible for sports to lack competition.
As a job, the players play for money. If they are not happy with the pay they jump ship to another team. They perform as much as they can to get a better pay. I don't think they go all out for the game's sake. They do not compete for the sport's sake but for the ratings which then bring more prominence to them and the team, which translates to better pay.