Bamba goes solo on rookie deal, still may hire agent
Mohamed Bamba represented himself in his rookie deal with the Orlando Magic, but he may hire an agent in the future, Greer Love, Bamba’s adviser said last week.
Bamba, who played center for the Texas Longhorns before being taken No. 6 by the Magic in last month’s NBA draft, has formed a company, Lenox Partners, to handle his business affairs. Bamba is the founder and chairman of the company, while Love, who has been Bamba’s mentor since he was in the fourth grade, is CEO and managing director.
Love has a background in private equity, and he and Bamba interviewed 18 NBA agents prior to the draft. They liked some of them but decided that for his rookie deal, in which many of the terms are pre-slotted under the NBA collective-bargaining agreement, Bamba would represent himself. However, Bamba may have an agent in the future, Love said.
“We are still entertaining the idea of hiring an agent at some point in his career,” Love said. “If Mo becomes the type of player we all think he will be, we may need more resources down the road.”
Bamba, 20, is 7-foot-1 and some analysts have compared him to Utah Jazz center and NBA Defensive Player of the Year Rudy Gobert.
Bamba wanted an individual, customized approach to his business as a professional athlete, and Love has no plans to sign other clients or become certified by the National Basketball Players Association in the future.
“I don’t have any other players in the pipeline,” Love said. “I am not actively recruiting players and I don’t plan to.”
■ CAA GOES DEEP: CAA Sports has signed several up-and-coming MLB players, including Miami Marlins third baseman Brian Anderson, a Rookie of the Year candidate. CAA also signed outfielder Brandon Nimmo, a 2011 first-round draft pick who is having a breakout season for the Mets, and shortstop Bo Bichette, a 2016 second-round pick who is seen as a top prospect for the Toronto Blue Jays.
CAA Baseball agents Jeff Berry, Brodie Van Wagenen and Matt Ricatto represent Anderson. Nimmo is represented by Van Wagenen and Ryan Hamill. Bichette is represented by Kent Matthes and Berry. Anderson was formerly with CSE Talent; Nimmo was formerly with Independent Sports & Entertainment; and Bichette was formerly with Ballengee Group.
■ REF GETS MULTISPORT DEAL: The Montag Group negotiated former NCAA basketball and NFL football referee Gene Steratore’s multiyear deal with CBS Sports as a rules analyst for its Final Four college basketball and NFL coverage.
TMG agent Gideon Cohen signed Steratore about a year ago. He declined to reveal any financial details of the unusual agreement to work for the network as an analyst for two sports but said, “The final numbers reflected the totality of his assignment.”
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