Isaac Chotiner recently did an in-depth article on Rich Paul, who represents LeBron James. He got a shocking revelation from an NBA general manager.
Rich Paul is representative of one of the ambitious booming classes to have evolved alongside professional sport. Sports agencies and players’ agents are increasingly ubiquitous in sports.
More and more sports require athletes to communicate with organizations through an intermediary such as an agent. This allows democratization of the negotiation process between teams and athletes.
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Unlike other sports agents, however, Rich Paul had a very unconventional path to the top. This man did not attend an Ivy League college for his undergraduate degree. He did not enroll in one of the 20 best B-Schools to prepare for the world of sports finance.
Instead, he cultivated a relationship with the most popular basketball player of the 21st century. And at first glance, that relationship was won, not a forfeit of being friends with LeBron James.
“Empowering players has been the worst thing that has happened to sport”: Rich Paul said this
As mentioned earlier, Chotiner’s article on The New Yorker regarding Rich Paul is fascinating to say the least. It also implies a rather uncomfortable truth as told to the writer by an NBA general manager:
“Empowering players is a trap for the fact that the league has done a terrible job of empowering teams. The players carry weight in every situation. I think this is the worst thing that has happened to professional sports at all levels.
“The players have all the weight in every situation. I think this is the worst thing that has happened to professional sports at all levels.
– NBA GM on player empowerment
(Going through @IChotiner)
– Hoop Central (@TheHoopCentral) May 31, 2021
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This statement was made in reference to the power wielded by a superstar like LeBron James in today’s NBA. James can dictate the future of several franchises with his decisions as a free agent.
With the movement of gamers on the rise and with the advent of the supermax contract, it’s clear that gamers are serious about their own empowerment. They have learned that they deserve their fair share of a cake that would not exist without them.