SBD/Closing Bell

Rich Paul's NBPA Certification Pending Before He Can Rep LeBron

The NBPA is awaiting documentation to complete the agent certification process for Rich Paul, who left CAA earlier this week to start his own agency and represent Heat F LeBron James in contract negotiations. NBPA Dir of Security & Agent Administration Robert Gadson said that Paul’s certification application has been at the union since the week of March 8. Gadson said, “It’s pending receipt of certain documentation.” He would not say what documentation the union was awaiting. But asked if there was a problem, Gadson said, “None.” A source close to Paul said, “There has been regular communication with the players association and we anticipate the certification will be finalized in the next few days.”

The NBPA requires agents to pass a background check and have a degree from an accredited four-year college or university. However, the NBPA agent committee has the authority to determine whether relevant negotiating experience can substitute for a period of education. Paul did not attend college, but has worked in professional basketball in some capacity for over nine years, including over three years at CAA working with Leon Rose, who was James’ NBA contract agent.

Paul had been working closely with several NBA player clients at CAA. Today, two of those players, Clippers G Eric Bledsoe and Cavaliers F Tristan Thompson, sent notice to the NBPA they had terminated Rose as their agent. James’ official notice that he had terminated Rose had not been received by the NBPA as of today. Under NBPA rules an NBA player cannot sign with another agent until 15 days after officially terminating his previous agent.
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