SBJ/Nov. 18-24, 2013/Labor and Agents

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  • Agent Ramasar leaves BDA Sports to restart his own agency

    Liz Mullen
    Todd Ramasar, an NBA agent who has worked for prominent basketball agents Arn Tellem and Bill Duffy, has opened his own shop and is in talks to merge with another basketball agency.

    Ramasar declined to name the other NBA player representation firm, but said it was a smaller, independent firm. Ramasar noted that although talks were far along, there was still a chance the merger would not be consummated.

    Ramasar, 34, restarted his company, Los Angeles-based Life Sports Management, after leaving Duffy’s BDA Sports in September. Life Sports Management was a firm that Ramasar had owned before joining BDA Sports in 2008, where he represented former NBA All-Star point guard Baron Davis.

    “I am going back to my entrepreneurial roots,” Ramasar said. “I want to build something that can grow organically over time.”

    Life Sports Management has 10 basketball clients playing in the U.S. and overseas. They include Clippers center Ryan Hollins, Charlotte Bobcats small forward Jeff Taylor and Marcus Denmon, who was drafted in the second round in 2012 and is playing for Turkish Basketball League team Tofa. Taylor is co-represented by BDA Sports and Life Sports Management.

    In the last decade there have been several instances of lawsuits, grievances or other disputes when a young agent left a larger agency, taking clients with him. But this is not the case with Ramasar’s departure from BDA Sports.
    The parting was amicable, and, in fact, Duffy and Ramasar remain friends, according to both of them.
     
    “Todd is an excellent human being, a great father and someone I have great respect for,” Duffy said. “His time at BDA was mutually beneficial and I am in full support of his desire to re-establish his independent agency roots. Every client he represents will be well-served and well-taken care of. I wish him nothing but the best.”

    Ramasar said of the parting, “There was nothing negative. I just felt it was time, in my career, to go on my own.”

    Ramasar played basketball at UCLA before joining Tellem’s former agency, Tellem & Associates, in 1999 as an intern. (Tellem is now vice chairman of Wasserman Media Group). Over time, Ramasar said, he hopes to expand his firm to other sports and is eyeing football and baseball representation.

    > BREAKIN’ IT DOWN: Ellen Zavian, a sports lawyer and former NFL agent who has helped organize women soccer players, softball players and action sports athletes into unions or trade associations, has formed the United Breakin’ Association, a nonprofit trade organization to represent competitive break dancers in the U.S. and globally.

    Goals for the organization include creating break dancer teacher certification, providing UBA logo licensing opportunities and providing a platform for sponsors to support the break dancing competitions and the break dancing community.

    Zavian is interim executive director for UBA, based in Washington, D.C.

    UBA is organizing competitive breakers, both male and female, who participate in competitions worldwide, she said. The Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists represents break dancers involved in entertainment projects, but this is the first organization to represent those involved in competitions, she said.

    Zavian said it is estimated that there are about 500,000 breakers globally and about 50,000 to 60,000 in the U.S.

    > NFL AGENT SWITCHES: Athletes First, owned by agent David Dunn, has signed Chargers rookie wide receiver Keenan Allen as a client. Allen, who was drafted in the third round this year, was leading all rookie wide receivers as of last week in receptions, yards and first downs, according to NFL.com. He was formerly co-represented by Atlas Sports Agency and Blueprint Sports Management. Additionally, Indianapolis Colts punter Pat McAfee has left Athletes First but had not officially signed with another agent as of last week. … Relativity Sports has signed New York Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul and Miami Dolphins defensive tackle Jared Odrick. Both are represented by Eugene Parker, who heads Relativity Sports’ football division. Both players were formerly represented by Rosenhaus Sports.

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

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