As news broke that the Los Angeles Lakers had not only fired longtime general manager Mitch Kupchak, but also lured power agent Rob Pelinka as his replacement, the ears of player representatives across the country perked up. Pelinka boasts an impressive list of clients—ranging from James Harden to Buddy Hield—and will have to divest his ownership stake in his agency, Landmark Sports, which has sparked a vast number of phone calls from rival agents. “It will be like the wild, wild west,” one rival agent told The Crossover. “It’s like a real life Jerry Maguire,” said another.
A league source also said Pelinka will still collect his allotted fees for the remainder of each player contract he has negotiated. For all player contracts above the minimum salary, agents who negotiate deals are due 4% of the player’s annual salary. For example, through James Harden’s $118 million extension with the Houston Rockets alone, Pelinka will earn $4.72 million through 2020, while also commanding an assured multi-million dollar annual salary from Los Angeles. DraftExpress lists the current and future known guaranteed salary for Pelinka's primary clients at a staggering $363,740,424, equating to over $14.5 million for his services.
Waiters said that he'll remain with Pelinka's Landmark Sports Agency for the foreseeable future, and represented by agent Brandon Rosenthal. Pelinka was Kobe Bryant's longtime agent, an obvious Lakers tie. Some of his other NBA clients include Chris Bosh, James Harden and Eric Gordon. Waiters said Pelinka going to the Lakers in such a capacity was "a dream come true." "He took a big-time job that you really can't turn down," Waiters said.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Interesting undercurrent of trade deadline: The agent frenzy to poach Rob Pelinka's old clients. Every player has numerous new suitors.
WASSERMAN SIGNS KLAY THOMPSON: Wasserman is representing Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson both on and off the court. Greg Lawrence is Thompson’s lead agent at Wasserman. He was formerly represented by BDA Sports.
Warriors G Klay Thompson has left BDA Sports for on-the-court work and is currently without a playing contract agent. Thompson left BDA for marketing work last fall and signed with Wasserman for off-the-court work.
Liz Mullen: 76ers C Nerlens Noel signed with Catalyst Sports & Media. Agents Happy Walters & Steve McCaskill repping him. SBD: bit.ly/2i0Wo0Q
Mark J. Burns: Agent Rich Kleiman of Roc Nation recently left the agency, per sources. Looks like Kleiman is heading in-house to work with Kevin Durant. To clarify even further per sources ... Durant is still with Roc Nation but Kleiman is now Durant's manager/business partner.
Jake Fischer: Per multiple sources, Sixers center and impending free agent Nerlens Noel has left Andy Miller, ASM Sports. Expected to sign with Dan Fagen.
Liz Mullen: Sacramento Kings' Rudy Gay, expected to be a top 2017 NBA free agent, has signed with Roc Nation Sports Roger Montgomery, source says.
Sam Amick: Two quick clarifications on the Klay Thompson front: he is signing with the Team Sports division at Wasserman, not Action Sports. And the aforementioned shoe deal renegotiation was never signed. Klay is still surveying the landscape on that front & Wasserman will handle
Sam Amick: But Klay's view of his shoe deal, which was renegotiated last summer, appears to have played a big part. Context here usatoday.com/story/sports/n…
Sam Amick: BDA retains Klay's basketball business while Wasserman will try to take his off-court biz to a new level. Warriors deal is through 2018-19
Sam Amick: Tidbit on agent front that will have trade deadline ripple effect: can confirm Rudy Gay is changing agents, is no longer w/ Octagon Sports.
Josh Ketroser, agent to Boston Celtics guard Marcus Smart, has left Wasserman. Ketroser confirmed he had left the agency but did not have any other comment. Ketroser is the latest agent to leave the basketball practice since Arn Tellem left in June 2015 to become vice chairman of Palace Sports & Entertainment, owner of the Detroit Pistons. The others include Tellem’s son, Michael Tellem, who now works at CAA Sports; James Dunleavy, who now works at Independent Sports & Entertainment; and Jason Glushon, who formed his own agency.
Liz Mullen: Atlanta Hawks F Kris Humphries has signed with @ISEWorldwide. Humphries is returning to NBA agent Dan Fegan.
Landmark Sports founder and NBA agent Rob Pelinka has signed Miami Heat forward Chris Bosh for representation. Bosh had been represented by CAA Sports but left that agency in late September. The Heat announced in September that it was unable to clear Bosh to participate in basketball activities after a preseason physical. The Heat did not disclose the problem, but it has been widely reported that Bosh is suffering from blood clots.
Barry Jackson: Can confirm, as SB Journal reported, that Chris Bosh - who left CAA - is now repped by Kobe's agent, Rob Pelinka. Still wants to play but no timetable for Bosh comeback attempt. And Heat and Bosh know it won't be with Heat.
Tony Jones: OKC Thunder forward Josh Huestis has signed with ASM Sports and Andy Miller, league sources tell The Salt Lake Tribune
Fred Katz: Can confirm @Tony Jones's report that Josh Huestis has switched to ASM representation. Was previously with Vanguard Sports Group.
Liz Mullen: ESPN broadcaster Stephen A. Smith switches agencies; signs with Creative Artists Agency in all areas. SBJ: bit.ly/2cWMJpt
Tim Reynolds: Unsure how this will ultimately affect anything, but AP is told that Chris Bosh has fired CAA as his representatives.
CAA Sports has signed Orlando Magic guard/forward Mario Hezonja, the No. 5 overall pick of the 2015 draft. He was formerly represented by Wasserman.
Liz Mullen: NBA free agent PG Norris Cole has signed with NBA agent Joel Bell. He had been repped by Klutch Sports. SBD: bit.ly/2bY411M
Liz Mullen: New Orleans Pelicans PG Jrue Holiday has signed with Jason Glushon of Glushon Sports. Former rep: Wasserman. SBD: bit.ly/2bYBegK
Jorge Sierra: Nuggets' Emmanuel Mudiay and Raptors' Bruno Caboclo will now be represented by BJ Armstrong of Wasserman, we're told.
David 'Dubi' Pick: Hearing NBA free-agent Kevin Seraphin, though rebuffed China and Euroleague offers, hired agent Bouna Ndiaye over Klutch Sports.
Jorge Sierra: FYI: Clippers guard Alan Anderson is now represented by agent Chris Luchey. https://shar.es/1wpech
Interperformances is proud to announce that the NBA star Kwame Brown decided to sign with our agency. The #1 overall pick of the 2001 draft is ready for a new life. His comeback can be the road to glory for a team that believes in him. Kwame is back, physically healthy and ready to be the outstanding player he was on several NBA teams. A great intimidator that can block shots , rebound consistently and explode in devastating dunks. No longer the young man that entered the NBA, Kwame is now an experienced and mature player and man. And he’s back, for the love of the game.
Liz Mullen: Tandem Sports + Entertainment has signed NBA free agent F Adonis Thomas for representation. NBA agent Jim Tanner is repping him.
Agent Jason Glushon has opened his own agency and negotiated forward Al Horford’s $113 million, four-year maximum free agent deal with the Boston Celtics. Glushon opened Glushon Sports Management after leaving Wasserman in May. Horford followed Glushon to his new agency, which is based in Los Angeles.
Forward/guard Evan Turner, who signed a four-year, $70 million contract with the Portland Trail Blazers, signed with BDA Sports, and Kevin Bradbury negotiated his deal. He was formerly represented by FAME.
Independent Sports and Entertainment signed free agent power forward Terrence Jones. Jones will be represented by Dan Fegan and James Dunleavy. He was formerly represented by Wasserman.
Adrian Wojnarowski: As free agency gets started, Portland RFA guard Allen Crabbe has changed representation. He hired Aaron Mintz and Ty Sullivan of CAA Sports.
Shams Charania: Beno Udrih, who'll garner interest on market as vet backup, has moved to Octagon as rep. He took buyout with Miami in February.
Liz Mullen: CAA Sports has signed three NBA players, including Chicago Bulls players Bobby Portis and Tony Snell. SBJ: bit.ly/2914zXV
Billionaire Ron Burkle is starting an athlete management and sports-related investment company that’ll be led by former Madison Square Garden Co. Chief Executive Officer Hank Ratner. The company, Independent Sports and Entertainment, essentially replaces Relativity Sports, in which Burkle was an investor. The new firm has retained several top agents and their clients from the L.A.-based sports agency, which is closing. ISE begins with more than 300 Major League Baseball, National Football League and National Basketball Association players under management, including baseball’s two-time MVP Miguel Cabrera, basketball’s DeMarcus Cousins and football’s Larry Fitzgerald.
Jorge Sierra: Serbian big men Miroslav Raduljica and Ognjen Kuzmic have signed with agent Chris Patrick of Relativity Sports.
Adam Himmelsbach: Evan Turner says he has indeed moved on from agent David Falk and is now represented by Kevin Bradbury, who also reps Amir Johnson.
Sean Deveney: Have learned that @celtics unrestricted free agent Evan Turner has fired agent David Falk. He'll be repped by Kevin Bradbury of BDA Sports.
Michael Scotto: Former No. 1 pick Andrea Bargnani signs with agent Guillermo Bermejo (You First Sports). He's in training camp for the Italian National Team
Octagon has signed Memphis Grizzlies center Marc Gasol for representation on and off the court. Gasol will be represented by agent Alex Saratsis. He was formerly represented by Wasserman.
Emiliano Carchia: Ognjen Kuzmic leaves BDA and signs with agency Relativity Sports (Chris Patrick/Dragan Delic). Same agency as Miroslav Raduljca
Liz Mullen: Magic G Victor Oladipo signed with CAA Sports agents Leon Rose & Mitch Nathan. Former Rep: Raymond Brothers. SBD: bit.ly/1svnZtU
Jeff Goodman: Miroslav Raduljica has signed with Chris Patrick of Relativity Sports for negotiations with NBA teams. Miroslav is under contract for another year with Euroleague Panathinaikos. He has a buyout in place, will gauge NBA interest.
Priority Sports & Entertainment has signed Washington Wizards guards Ramon Sessions and Garrett Temple. Founder and CEO Mark Bartelstein will represent them. Temple was formerly represented by Performance Sports Management and Sessions by Allegiant Athletic Agency. “Ramon is doing well in Washington and I expect great things for him in the future,” his former agent, A3’s Jared Karnes, said in an email.
Houston Rockets forward Michael Beasley has also left Allegiant Athletic Agency. Beasley returned to the NBA to play for the Rockets in early March after playing in the Chinese Basketball Association and being named MVP of that league’s All-Star Game in January. Beasley had been with Karnes since 2013, but was without an agent last week.
Zach Lowe: From what I hear, Kawhi is still w/ Elfus's agency, and this is basically an internal shift in who does what for him twitter.com/JakeLFischer/s…
Jake Fischer: According to Brian Elfus, the only change in Kawhi Leonard's representation is that he has "stepped back from off the court negotiations."
Chris Reichert: Robert Upshaw has switched agencies and signed with Hazan Sports Management, per a source
Cleveland Cavaliers guard J.R. Smith is not only making plays on the court, he's doing so off of it as well. Smith is in the process of parting ways with Creative Artists Agency and plans to sign with Rich Paul of Cleveland-based Klutch Sports, league sources informed cleveland.com.
When Dwight Howard made the decision to follow in Shaquille O’Neal’s footsteps yet again by choosing recently to sign with his agent, Perry Rogers, the Houston Rockets center paid little mind to the possibility that criticism might follow. If nothing else, his most vocal detractor — that being the TNT analyst in O’Neal who has spent years ridiculing Howard — wasn’t about to criticize him for the move. After all, O'Neal encouraged the idea. "(O’Neal) reached out to me (weeks ago) and felt like this could be something that could really help me in my future," Howard, who — like O’Neal — played for the Orlando Magic and the Los Angeles Lakers, told USA TODAY Sports on Thursday. "We talked, more so about basketball. And then we started talking about agents and all that stuff.
"He said, 'Hey, I've got somebody who really helped change my life and really sculptured the Shaq that you see today.' He introduced me to Perry. Perry came down to Houston. We had a really good conversation. It was a decision I made on my own. That’s why I liked it, because I decided to make it. There wasn't anybody who was around, anybody who could say, 'Yo, what do you think?' I went with what I felt was right (for) me."
After years of feuding, Houston Rockets star Dwight Howard and future Hall of Fame center Shaquille O’Neal are partnering. Howard plans to hire O’Neal’s agent, Perry Rogers, for his new representation, multiple sources told The Vertical. Rogers could file official paperwork with the National Basketball Players Association as soon as Friday, sources said.
O’Neal, a longtime public nemesis of Howard’s, had extensive conversations with the Houston center and sold him on the marketing of “Superman” and the representation of Rogers, sources said. The potential of marketing Howard and O’Neal in advertisements together played a role, too, sources said. Howard and O’Neal progressed in the NBA with the same moniker of “Superman” – for which Shaq has publicly mocked Howard – and they both left the Orlando Magic for the Los Angeles Lakers in the middle of their careers.
"Just really been since I went to All Star break in Sedona (Ariz.) I've been spending time thinking and just trying to figure out what I can do to better myself and better my situation," Howard said. "It was nothing against my agent. It wasn't anything bad that he did to me. Sometimes, change is good. I just made a decision based on what I feel I needed to change. I always respect him and love him. We still talk now. But as far as him being my representation, I decided to go other ways."
Howard said he has not targeted another agent and is not weighing his free agent options. "Right now my focus is on us winning and trying to get to the playoffs and win a championship," Howard said. "All the other stuff, it's not a factor now."
Sam Amick: Rockets big man Dwight Howard has parted ways w/ agent Dan Fegan. He issued this statement to @USATODAYsports: "As I continue to embark on my NBA journey, I have decided to sever my relationship with Dan Fegan and Relativity Sports. I have the utmost respect for Dan, but this is the right decision for me. My sole focus remains working with my teammates to position the Rockets for a pursuit of a championship. I wish Dan and the team at Relativity all the best in the future."
Calvin Watkins: Dwight Howard says he's fired agent Dan Fegan. Dwight Howard said he presented the paperwork to Fegan recently and doesn't anticipate any issues.
Calvin Watkins: Dwight Howard had been interviewing agents of late and didn't give a specific reason why he let Fegan go. He seemed at peace with it.
The fact that Howard was known to be seriously considering a change in representation at the time, meanwhile, only complicated an already-tricky situation. Yet if Howard truly wanted out of Houston, he could have told those teams that he would pick up the player option for next season and push his free agency back to the summer of 2018. Instead, he stayed and the possibility of this partnership surviving thus remained.
Liz Mullen: Golden State Warriors F Draymond Green has signed with Serena Williams’ agent, Jill Smoller of WME, for off-court work. More in Closing Bell
Shams Charania: Golden State's Luke Walton has signed coaching representation with Wasserman Media Group, league sources tell The Vertical.
J. Michael: Marcin Gortat has "parted ways" w/his longtime agent Guy Zucker, a person w/knowledge of the situation told me, after 9yrs #WizardsTalk #NBA
J. Michael: Gortat has to wait 2 weeks before signing w/another agent which is standard. #WizardsTalk #NBA
Chris Haynes: Earl Watson, new interim coach of Phoenix Suns, will hire agent Rich Paul of Klutch Sports Group, league sources inform @clevelanddotcom.
When the Bulls go to negotiate with Pau Gasol in free agency this summer, they will face a new representative. Gasol confirmed to the Tribune that he has filed the paperwork for Steven Heumann to represent him.
Heumann, who also represents Chris Paul and Tony Parker , works for Creative Artists Agency, which is headed by Leon Rose. That's an agent the Bulls know well from their pursuit of Carmelo Anthony and Rose's work for former coach Tom Thibodeau.
When the Bulls go to negotiate with Pau Gasol in free agency this summer, they will face a new representative. Gasol confirmed to the Tribune that he has filed the paperwork for Steven Heumann to represent him. Heumann, who also represents Chris Paul and Tony Parker, works for Creative Artists Agency, which is headed by Leon Rose. That's an agent the Bulls know well from their pursuit of Carmelo Anthony and Rose's work for former coach Tom Thibodeau.
Michael Scotto: John Wall's marketing & off court matters will be managed by his long-time friend & business manager Ty Williams (BYB Sports Marketing firm)
Marc J. Spears: With grace period over, Wizards G John Wall has officially signed with agent Rich Paul & his Klutch Sports Group, a Paul spokesperson said.
Avery Bradley has changed agents from Mitchell Butler of the Rival Sports Group to Rob Pelinka, who also represents Kobe Bryant. Butler was able to procure the oft-injured Bradley a four-year, $32 million contract extension last summer, considered an above-market deal. Now Bradley is apparently unhappy with his contract, especially after seeing players such as Milwaukee’s Khris Middleton (five years, $70 million), Utah’s Gordon Hayward (four years, $61 million), and Cleveland’s Tristan Thompson (five years, $82 million) cash in with lucrative extensions, making Bradley’s deal appear to be a bargain with the new television money increasing the salary cap this summer.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Yet another player making move to leverage next steps in his career: Boston’s Avery Bradley has hired agent Rob Pelinka of Landmark Sports.
"Just a decision that I made, just thinking about it with my team," Wall said earlier in the week. "The people I was with have been a great partnership the five years I was with them. They did a lot of positive things for me. It was just a situation where I felt me and my team wanted to go in different ways with how I wanted to build my team." Wall wants what LeBron James -- and, a generation before both of them, Gary Payton -- achieved: representation that will empower those closest to him in meaningful positions.
Wall wants that for his closest friends, that grew up with him in Raleigh and have been there with him at every stop along the way, through his troubled childhood, his explosion as a basketball talent in high school, his year at Kentucky and his six seasons in Washington. And he believes Rich Paul -- among this season's worst-kept secrets is that Wall will hire Paul after the 15-day grace period to which players must adhere before hiring a new agent expires -- can do that. "That's the way," Wall said Saturday night, without naming any names. "That's what I want to do."
Wall will soon make his best friend, Ty Williams -- "my brother," Wall says -- his manager. Another friend, Reggie Jackson, is working at a bank in the D.C. area. Eric "E.J." Grissett is a disc jockey at local clubs; Alban (Bane) Okafor is a fledgling entrepreneur just as Rich Paul was all those years ago. And Wall wants his guys to follow that path.
July 5, 2022 | 5:24 pm EDT Update
Marc Stein: The Mavericks will sign Jaden Hardy, their No. 37 draft pick, to a multi-year deal this week, league sources say. Sources say Dallas withheld a portion of its taxpayer mid-level exception in coming to terms with JaVale McGee to ensure it could sign Hardy to a long-term deal.