Thanks to movies like Jerry Maguire, the idea of becoming a professional sports agent is the dream career for many diehard sports fans. What people don’t seem to understand about the business of representing professional athletes, though, is the fact that it may be the most competitive and cutthroat industry on the planet. That’s right, getting there is a struggle, but maintaining a client base is even more difficult.
Many have tried, but few have succeeded in carving out a career as a professional sports agent. With that being said, here is a look at seven of the most successful sports agents in the United States, with some key clients and the total amount of money negotiated during his career.
Note: All contract data courtesy of Forbes.
Scott Boras is considered by many to be the premier sports agent on the planet. And, if you look at the way he produces for his clients, it’s easy to see why he’s earned such a prestigious distinction.
Despite having a below-average offseason (by his standards) last year, Boras is the guy Major League Baseball players go to when they want to get maximum value on the open market. In fact, there was a point in time where teams would steer clear of Boras’ clients out of fear that he would demand too much money.
Jeff Schwartz is one of the most powerful and successful agents in the NBA today, but he actually got his start representing some of the world’s best tennis players.
He has since built his company, Excel Sports Management, into a multi-sport powerhouse agency, and seven of his current NBA players have landed max contracts under his watch.
Pat Brisson parlayed a successful playing career at the junior hockey level into becoming the co-head and face of CAA’s hockey division. He represents several of the biggest names in the sport, and he’s widely considered to be the premier hockey agent in the business.
Tom Condon is most well-known for his representation of some of the NFL’s best quarterbacks (including Peyton Manning), but his rise to becoming an NFL super agent is truly remarkable.
The 65-year-old power agent earned his law degree while playing as an offensive lineman for the Kansas City Chiefs. Following his playing career, Condon served as president of the NFLPA from 1984-1986 before moving on to his career as a sports agent. All the hard work has definitely paid off for him.
Casey Close became a household name in the sports agent world when he began representing legendary New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter. He has since gone on to become, arguably, the most powerful agent in Major League Baseball not named Scott Boras.
Drew Rosenhaus, the man in the featured image above, may be the most recognizable agent in all of professional sports, largely due to his high profile client list and public presence during some of the most memorable contract disputes in NFL history — who can forget this gem from his tenure repping Terrell Owens?
While many consider him to be a ‘shark,’ there’s no denying that Rosenhaus has built his agency into an empire, which has led to becoming one of the most influential sports agents in the business.
Joel Segal has long been one of the elite agents in the National Football League. He has represented players such as Reggie Bush, Randy Moss and DeAngelo Hall, but his best work may have been navigating Michael Vick through his legal battles and jail time to ultimately landing another $100 million contract with the Philadelphia Eagles.
Lead image via Getty
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