My first agent helped me get my first deal. He was new and so was I – so I was giving him a shot the same way he was giving me one. I don’t know how he made that deal happen, but he did. He’s not an agent anymore.
My second agent, 3 years later, had about 120 clients already when I contacted him. I was in Montenegro playing at the time, and he don’t hesitate to add me to his stable.
He never got me any contracts. Go figure.
Over 9 years, only my first and second opportunities were set up by an agent. All the rest were done by me. I’m the best agent I’ve ever had – even in the non-sports world.
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Agents are people. Adults, running a business. For this adult person to eat and pay bills, he/she must make money.
An agent receives a commission that is a small percentage of what his clients earn from their playing contracts. These commissions all add up to the agent’s income.
If you don’t have a playing contract, you’re earning $0 from playing basketball (at least as far as an agent is concerned – we’re not talking streetball cash prize tournaments).
What is 20% of $0? Or 4%, or 9% of $0?
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What this means: An agent doesn’t need a player who doesn’t have a team paying him/her or who hasn’t ever had a team pay him/her. An agent is better off finding consistently-employed players, helping them continue to get paid and earning income off of that. At least then, they know they’re working with someone who can generate income.
Any time an agent spends working for a player who produces no revenue is lost time and lost money for said agent. Which may be why agents don’t reply to your inquiries. Not because you’re not good or don’t have potential. But why even risk the time on a maybe when they can represent a definite?
Still, many players ask me a bunch of dumb, time wasting questions about getting an agent, as if that’s their shortcut to success. Usually they ask, when it’s clear that no agent is interested in the player. If they were replying to you, you wouldn’t be asking me how to find one.
Agents don’t need zero-income clients. If you’ve never signed a contract to play basketball, yes, I’m talking about you.
What this means: You need to prove you can generate income. Go get yourself signed. While you’re signed and playing, contact agents. That conversation changes.
The first change is that the conversation actually happens.