Prominent NBA agent Happy Walters has left Relativity Media and its Relativity Sports offshoot, Variety’s James Rainey reports. Walters represents John Wall, Jimmy Butler, Ty Lawson, Monta Ellis, Amar’e Stoudemire, Iman Shumpert and other notable NBA names. Billionaire and Relativity part-owner Ron Burkle, who was once a part of the bidding group that ultimately bought the Kings in 2013, will take over as chairman of Relativity Sports, tweets Liz Mullen of the SportsBusiness Journal.
Relativity was in the news this summer when DeAndre Jordan, then a client of Relativity agents Dan Fegan and Jarinn Akana, pulled his infamous flip-flop and re-signed with the Clippers after verbally committing to the Mavs. Jordan later let go of Fegan and Akana, and Austin Rivers, the son of Clippers coach/executive Doc Rivers, did the same.
Several Walters clients made moves this offseason. Butler scored a new five-year deal worth more than $92MM with the Bulls, Ellis signed with the Pacers for nearly $44MM over four years, Shumpert re-upped with the Cavs on a four-year deal worth $40MM and Stoudemire joined the Heat for the minimum salary. Lawson gave up the guarantee on the final season of his contract to facilitate a trade to the Rockets, a move that could cast him into free agency this coming summer.
Walters is forming his own company, Rainey hears, though it’s unclear if all his clients will follow him. One of them, Maurice Harkless, faces a November 2nd deadline to sign a rookie scale extension, but the chances of an extension for Harkless, whom the Blazers acquired via trade this summer, have long seemed remote.