SBJ/June 25-July 1, 2012/Labor and Agents

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  • For Wasserman, it’s all about No. 1 in yet another draft

    Liz Mullen
    NBA and MLB agent Arn Tellem can’t remember a time when a single sports agency represented the No. 1 overall pick in the NBA, MLB, NFL and MLS drafts, but it appears Wasserman Media Group will do that this year with its recent signing of projected top NBA pick Anthony Davis.

    Wasserman already represents No. 1 picks Andrew Luck (NFL), Carlos Correa (MLB) and Andrew Wenger (MLS) from those leagues’ respective drafts this year.

    “I don’t think it’s ever been done before,” Tellem said last week. Tellem, who is vice chairman of Wasserman, will represent Davis with Wasserman NBA agent Thad Foucher. Wasserman NFL player agent Will Wilson
    Consensus No. 1 NBA draft pick Anthony Davis joins Wasserman clients Carlos Correa, Andrew Wenger and Andrew Luck.
    Photo by: GETTY IMAGES (4)
    represents Luck; MLB player agent Paul Kinzer represents Correa; and MLS player agent Richard Motzkin (also managing executive of the agency’s global soccer group) represents Wenger.

    Davis is the consensus top pick for Thursday night’s NBA draft. Tellem said the Kentucky forward reminds him of a previous No. 1 overall pick.

    “[Anthony] has incredible athletic ability and skill for someone so young,” he said. “He reminds me of Tim Duncan in the way he can impact the game in so many different ways. ... He is a cornerstone of a franchise for the next 15 years.”

    The agent search for Davis was one of the longest for a top prospect in any draft in recent history. CAA Sports as well as BDA Sports were said to be finalists to sign Davis. In addition to Davis, Wasserman represents Kentucky guard Doron Lamb, Kentucky forward Terrence Jones, Syracuse center Fab Melo and Washington guard Tony Wroten, all of whom could be first-round picks.

    “We are having a really good year at Wasserman,” Tellem said. “In the management practice, it is evident we are still at the top of our game, and the rest of the company is doing well, so we are very excited about our future.”

    ROSENHAUS SCRATCHES CAMP: NFL player agent Drew Rosenhaus had been planning to hold a 7-on-7 football camp for high school students this summer but changed plans after talking to the NCAA.

    Rosenhaus had wanted to hold the event, called Take It to the Haus, for high school football players in Florida’s Broward and Dade counties. Rosenhaus, whose agency is based in Miami, represents about 150 NFL players, many of whom hail from Miami. He said a marketing company approached him with the idea of having his clients from different Florida high schools at the camp along with the high school players.

    Rosenhaus said he checked with the NFL Players Association about it and they had no rules against it, but the NCAA cautioned him about the camp.

    “While they said it was not a rules violation, they said it could possibly hurt high school kids,” Rosenhaus said. “They thought it was enough of a gray area that they didn’t recommend that I do it. I decided, why even take a chance that would possibly compromise a young man’s eligibility.”

    Instead, Rosenhaus said, he (along with some of his clients) will hold a camp for younger kids, as he has in the past, that will stress the importance of exercise. That camp does not violate NCAA rules because, among other reasons, it is for children ages 6 to 12 and is a fitness camp rather than a football camp. “It will be a free camp for anyone who wants to show up,” Rosenhaus said.

    NORTON SIGNS TENNIS PLAYER: Norton Sports, a Laguna Beach, Calif.-based sports agency, has signed Katerina Stewart, 14, who won the most recent Junior Orange Bowl for girls 14 and under, in December 2011. Stewart will be represented by agency founder Scott Norton and tennis agent Ross Duncan. She is the first tennis player signed by Norton.

    Liz Mullen can be reached at lmullen@sportsbusinessjournal.com. Follow her on Twitter @SBJLizMullen.


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