The interest in playing overseas is at an all-time high right now. Although primarily as a backup plan if players do not make the NBA, there are still many reasons why playing overseas should be a primary option for many. But how does one go about obtaining a contract overseas? There are multiple ways which I will write about now. The most traditional, and easiest way for a player is to have an agent. By going through an agent, you enter a full-service structure. The agent has an established network, and experience in finding players’ jobs, and the agent negotiates contracts. Having an agent increases the likelihood that you will receive a contract offer, but you can never really know how good an agent is for your situation. Trusting and believing in your agent is the key. No agent can guarantee you a job, however. That must be clear to you.
Doing it yourself is another option. The advantage is that you are in total control of the situation. The same can be said for the disadvantage. You probably have a very limited network, you will have a lot of work, and will hear rejections more often than not. A simple rule of thumb is that the more professional the team is, the more likely that they use agents that they trust. Doing it yourself is the most time-consuming option. It will be a grind to reach out to teams and/or GM’s. That being said, it is not impossible, especially if you are willing to play for low money just to get a shot. You only need one coach or GM to believe in your talent. It would be advisable to do it yourself in addition to the next option.
Attending various summer leagues, player combines, and touring teams is becoming more popular among players who are serious about playing overseas. There are more opportunities for players to be seen by scouts and GM’s than ever before, but please be careful. There are also a lot of scammers who are looking for financial gain on the backs of hopeful athletes. This option is really about betting on yourself. Playing well will increase your chances. However, you have no control over who sees you perform and the level of competition is incredibly important. If you send a video to a team of you performing, that person will not only see how you perform but also how good your competition is. You had a great game? Great, but the guy guarding you was not talented. Especially if you have no agent, this may be your best option although the return on your monetary investment might be non-existent. The key is researching the best event for what you want to achieve. Be ready to put your money where your mouth is.
Thank you for taking the time to read my words!