Rich Paul has carved a niche for himself as a celebrity sports agent, managing some of the top talents in the world. He is the founder of Klutch Sports Group, which manages some of the household names in the NBA, including his friend, LeBron James.
Paul traces his success to his first encounter with the NBA star. According to The New York Times, the duo first met at the Akron-Canton Airport when they were about to board a flight to Atlanta. Paul wore a vintage Warren Moron jersey, which caught Lebron’s attention, and the two developed a strong friendship afterward.
“It was fate,” Paul told The New York Times. “I could have missed the plane. I could have taken an earlier flight. I could have not worn the jersey. I could have been having a bad day and not spoken to him.”
The first contract Paul negotiated in the NBA was for Lebron’s return to the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2014.
Aside from managing Lebron, Paul also manages valuable NBA stars like Anthony Davis, Ben Simmons, Draymond Green, and John Wall, among others. His agency, according to Forbes, has jumped 23 spots on the list of the world’s most valuable sports agencies.
Additionally, Forbes reports that Paul’s agency has made over $53m from commissions and has nearly $2 billion worth of contracts under its management.
Prior to starting Klutch Sports Group, Paul sold sports jerseys out of the trunk of his car and was on his way to Atlanta to buy more when he met LeBron James at the airport.
Born in 1981, Paul grew up in a Cleveland neighborhood where gun violence and drug abuse were quite common. He shared a one-bedroom apartment with his dad above R & J Confectionary, where they both woke up at 6:00 am every morning to punch in lottery tickets or sell milk and bread in Glenville. Sadly, his father died of cancer while he was still in high school 21 years ago.
However, the valuable life lessons that his dad passed on to him before his demise have greatly contributed to Paul’s success today. He taught him simple life lessons of respect, love, patience, and hard work.