I would like to use this blog post to speak directly to players who would like to play overseas but have no agent. When I am approached by players, more often than not, they have no agent and are looking for advice on how to get one. Typically I ask a few questions to better assess the situation of each individual. I for sure ask how old they are, what school they went to, how long they have been finished with school, if they have an agent, and if they have ever played overseas. Based on those first questions, there are usually a few more questions that will give further insight into the needs of the player. Although each conversation is different, there are parallels that I would like to touch on.
I very much believe that players need an agent in the early seasons of their careers. Older vets can get away without one especially if they have been on one team or in a particular country for a few years. They often know the pay scale and amenities that are offered there based on conversations with other players and managers. If you are at the beginning of your career, you will have no idea of these things. One point where I feel it is important to have an agent is finding a job and negotiating your first contract. Another reason is particularly important. If you have a long-term injury or you are fired, it is important to have someone with your best interests in mind to either negotiate a settlement and/or find you another job.
Some of the advice I give to players without an agent usually centers on pinpointing countries that they would like to play in and contacting as many agents as they can. Going on sites like fiba.com or eurobasket.com will be helpful with finding contact information. I also tell them to be prepared to not hear back from many of them, and even if they do write back, 99% will say that they are not accepting clients at the moment. You only need one agent to believe in you but finding that one will take a lot of patience and grind on your part. Agents rarely take on players that they have not previously scouted. You have to sell yourself and make that agent have the feeling that they can make money off of you. That is the reality. Another piece of advice concerning finding an agent is that they should talk to players that they know who already have one. Find out if that friend can “endorse” you with their agent. It can help get your foot in the door. Hopefully, this blog post will help someone. Feel free to contact me for other ideas or advice.
Thank you for taking the time to read my words!