Once Altman raised the idea with Wade and his agent, Leon Rose, there was no hesitation. Soon, all of the deals were done. Thomas, Frye and Shumpert were headed West, Wade had gone home and now everything had changed in Cleveland. Finally, Altman and his staff stood to let out a yell, hug and high-five. Whatever happens, they knew this: In one of the most impactful trade deadline days ever, Koby Altman and the Cleveland Cavaliers weren’t prepared to extinguish an era. Twenty-four hours had changed everything.
Mike George, an NBA agent who had been working at Excel Sports Management for the last five years, has opened his own agency in Canada and will co-represent several NBA players with his former employer. George’s new agency is called One Legacy Sports Management and is based in Toronto. Together with Excel, One Legacy will co-represent Magic center Khem Birch, Grizzlies forward Dillon Brooks, Nets forward Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, Nuggets guard Jamal Murray, Bucks center-forward Thon Maker, Mavericks forward-center Dwight Powell and Nets guard Rashad Vaughn.
Birch, Brooks, Murray and Powell are Canadian. George is Canadian and was a teacher, coach and co-founder of CIA Bounce, a Canadian AAU basketball program that has produced NBA players, including Timberwolves forward Andrew Wiggins. He became an agent in 2013 when he joined Excel. “It’s just something I wanted to do, especially in Canada,” George said of starting his own agency. “There’s never been a major sports basketball agency in Canada, so it’s the first one.” Both George and Jeff Schwartz, Excel founder and president, who’s also an NBA agent, said George’s departure from Excel was amicable.
Marios Olympios, the Greek agent of the young big man, stated that Papagiannis was not treated fairly by the Kings: “He never got a chance by the Kings. He had a double-double every time he played in the G-League. He had to travel for two and a half hour everytime he was assigned to Rhino and still he performed. There are many details that prove that he never got a real chance”.
Marios Olympios: “Unfortunately, in the draft, you can’t pick a team. You are picked. Giorgos ended up in a very disorganized franchise and I think that everyone in the NBA is shocked by the decision made by the Kings. It’s one more proof that something is wrong with the Kings”.
While it’s rumored that Panathinaikos, Papagiannis’ former team, is interested again in his services, Olympios doesn’t exclude anything: “Giorgos already has options on both sides of the Atlantic. We will take the best decision. He will go in a situation where he will be wanted and there will be a plan for him. The Kings have made a mistake and it will be proven down the road”.