The scandal that is rocking the college basketball and athletic apparel worlds is now working its way to the NBA as the players association is now investigating to see if agents or financial advisors working with NBA players are involved.
According to Chris Mannix of The Vertical, the general counsel of the National Basketball Players Association has been directed to determine if any of the ten people arrested so far have relationships with NBA players or agents and financial advisers who work with NBA players.
“We are going to be rigorous in making sure that anybody who is engaged in this misconduct is out, at least in terms of being certified by this [players association] to continue to work with our players,” NBPA executive director Michele Roberts told The Vertical.
The players association does not certify financial advisers, however, agents are required to be certified through the union.
There has already been one major agency directly linked to the scandal.
One of the people arrested by the FBI as part of the investigation is Christian Dawkins, an agent who was at ASM Sports until he was fired in May. ASM Sports is one of the biggest agencies in the NBA, representing players who make more than a combined $160 million annually in the NBA, according to Hoops Hype.
According to Darren Heitner of Forbes, the FBI raided ASM’s office on Tuesday and confiscated the computer of one agent still at the company, Andy Miller.
According to court documents, the assistant coaches who were arrested are accused of accepting bribes in exchange for exerting influence over players to pick certain agents and financial advisers once they reached the NBA.
“[Christian] Dawkins told [Anthony] Bland, as well CW-1 and UC-1, that they were ‘work[ing] together’ to make sure that University-5 players retained Dawkins’ company… Bland stated that he trusted Dawkins, and that any University-5 players over whom Bland had control would be ‘coming to’ Dawkins. Bland said that he had ‘something to do with’ all University-5 players and had ‘heavy influence’ over their decisions, including with respect to choosing agents and advisors.”
Roberts went on to explain that she believes there will be more links coming and she welcomes them.
“This is the kind of criminal prosecution that generally results in people, in my words, flipping,” Roberts told The Vertical. “There are too many close associations between some of the named defendants and people that I know are actively engaged with [NBA] players to think that it won’t have any impact. It will. But it’s almost good news. If people are engaged in this kind of conduct and potentially harming our players, thank you U.S. Attorney’s office, I’ll get right on it and get rid of them.”