In the business of basketball, which features tough negotiations, max contracts and constant player movement, one agency has quickly established itself as an incredibly influential force.
Rich Paul’s Klutch Sports Group, which began in 2012 with LeBron James as its primary client, has evolved into a powerhouse in the agency world, boasting 29 current players. That number should soon jump to 30, as Raptors guard Fred VanVleet is expected to sign with Klutch ahead of his impending free agency, according to NBA insider Marc Stein.
As the agency continues to grow, Klutch has broadened its reach well beyond the NBA, recently expanding into the NFL and negotiating NIL deals for James’ sons, Bryce and Bronny.
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Who is Rich Paul?
Paul is a longtime friend of James. He went from selling vintage jerseys from the trunk of his car to emerging as one of the most powerful agents in all of sports.
After James and Paul began their friendship in the early 2000s, James brought Paul into his inner circle. Paul worked with James’ previous agent, Leon Rose of CAA, before setting up Klutch Sports Group in 2012.
Since then, Paul has gone on to broker over $1 billion worth of contracts. He currently has the second-largest stable of clients in the NBA behind only Jeff Schwartz of Excel Sports Management.
“I told him I was going to go out on my own… and he said I’m going with you” – @RichPaul4 on starting @KlutchSports.
See episode 5 of #MoreThanAnAthlete on ESPN+ now. pic.twitter.com/nRDmzPEk5S
— UNINTERRUPTED (@uninterrupted) December 18, 2018
Which NBA players are signed to Klutch Sports Group?
Klutch has 29 active players on its roster, including eight current or former All-Stars, headlined by James, Anthony Davis, Zach LaVine, Ben Simmons, De’Aaron Fox, Draymond Green and John Wall.
|1.||LeBron James||Los Angeles Lakers||$44.4 million|
|2.||Anthony Davis||Los Angeles Lakers||$37.9 million|
|3.||Zach LaVine||Chicago Bulls||$37.0 million|
|4.||Ben Simmons||Brooklyn Nets||$35.4 million|
|5.||De’Aaron Fox||Sacramento Kings||$30.3 million|
|6.||Draymond Green||Golden State Warriors||$25.8 million|
|7.||Lonzo Ball||Chicago Bulls||$19.5 million|
|8.||Gary Trent Jr.||Toronto Raptors||$17.5 million|
|9.||Dejounte Murray||Atlanta Hawks||$16.5 million|
|10.||Collin Sexton||Utah Jazz||$16.5 million|
|11.||Jusuf Nurkic||Portland Trail Blazers||$15.6 million|
|12.||Kentavious Caldwell-Pope||Denver Nuggets||$14.0 million|
|13.||Jordan Clarkson||Utah Jazz||$13.3 million|
|14.||Talen Horton-Tucker||Utah Jazz||$10.2 million|
|15.||Darius Garland||Cleveland Cavaliers||$8.9 million|
Where does Rich Paul rank among top sports agents?
Paul is currently ranked at No. 4 on Forbes’ list of agents. He is one of three basketball agents in the top 10.
|1.||Scott Boras||Baseball||$191 million||$3.8 billion||Boras Corporation|
|2.||Jeff Schwartz||Basketball||$86 million||$2.2 billion||Excel Sports Management|
|3.||Joel Wolfe||Baseball||$58 million||$1.2 billion||Wasserman|
|4.||Rich Paul||Basketball||$55 million||$1.4 billion||Kutch Sports Group|
|5.||Dan Lozano||Baseball||$52 million||$1 billion||MVP Sports Group|
|6.||Casey Close||Baseball||$48 million||$960 million||Excel Sports Management|
|7.||Joel Segal||Football||$42 million||$1.4 billion||WME Sports|
|8.||Todd France||Football||$42 million||$1.4 billion||Athletes First|
|9.||Bill Duffy||Basketball||$41 million||$1 billion||WME Sports|
|10.||Sam & Seth Levinson||Baseball||$40 million||$810 million||ACES|