Sports agent Rich Paul is sharing his story. His memoir Lucky Me: A Memoir of Changing the Odds came out earlier this month, detailing his childhood growing up with a drug-addicted mother. But Paul’s father, who ran a corner store, taught him the business skills that would help him later in life.
Now, he’s the CEO of Klutch Sports Group, a multimillion-dollar company whose nearly 200 clients include NBA players LeBron James, Anthony Davis, Fred Van Vleet, Draymond Green, and Trae Young, among others. Klutch’s president of football operations, Nicole Lynn, negotiated the NFL’s richest deal ever for a quarterback with her renegotiation of Jalen Hurts’ contract. (It was eclipsed shortly afterward by deals for Lamar Jackson and Joe Burrow.)
A chance meeting with LeBron James in the Akron airport led to Paul working with the athlete and, ultimately, the formation of his own sports agency.
Despite his success, in a recent appearance on Sirius XM’s The Clay Cane Show, he confirmed that white athletes don’t trust him or other Black agents.
“That’s accurate, yeah. …,” Paul confirmed when asked if that was the case. Paul’s roster is almost exclusively Black. “It’s not international players because international players actually have a different outlook on it… But if you grew up in, you know, Indiana or Georgia or, you know, or Oklahoma, or even Ohio for that matter. Yeah, no.”
Paul represents Bosnia native Jusuf Nurkić of the Portland Trail Blazers but says he does not represent any white Americans in basketball.
“Yeah, it’s a very tough thing for sure,” Paul says. “You’d think there’d be a line down the street, but it’s not.”
In his memoir, Paul pays tribute to his father, Rich Paul, Sr., who died of cancer in 1999.
“I had a great example of who a man should be and what a man should do,” Paul told People. “I had a front-row seat to what work ethic was like, what perseverance was like. I watched my dad play air traffic controller in a community that was a war mixed with a tornado, but also a picnic at times. He was my hero in that regard.”
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