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Hakeem Nicks signs with Roc Nation Sports

Hakeem-Nicks-GiantsRoc Nation Sports added another talented athlete to its growing list on Thursday, as the agency announced that it has signed New York Giants wide receiver Hakeem Nicks. Victor Cruz, Nicks’ teammate, was one of the first big names to sign with Jay-Z’s agency last year. Like Cruz, Nicks will be represented by both Roc Nation and CAA.

Not long after signing with Roc Nation, Cruz was able to land a five-year, $43 million contract extension with the Giants. That type of money would be a stretch for Nicks, who did not catch a touchdown during the 2013 season. He has only missed a handful of games in the past three years, but Nicks always seems to be battling some sort of nagging injury.

At age 26, Nicks will certainly be able to find a few teams who are willing to take a chance on his less-than-stellar resume. He hauled in 155 passes for more than 2,200 yards and 18 touchdowns between the 2010 and 2011 seasons, and there is no denying that the former North Carolina star has as much raw talent as any receiver in the league.

In all likelihood, Nicks won’t be returning to the Giants. They already have a lot of money invested at the wide receiver position and reportedly had to fine him multiple times last season. A divorce seems inevitable, but Nicks should be well represented when he hits the open market.

H/T Darren Rovell

Robinson Cano sat with Jay-Z and Beyonce at the Grammys

Robinson-Cano-Jay-Z-Grammys

Remember when people were wondering why Robinson Cano would leave Scott Boras to sign with Jay-Z and his up-and-coming sports agency. It all made perfect sense when Cano signed a 10-year, $240 million contract with the Seattle Mariners. And on Sunday night, we were reminded of some of the perks that go along with being represented by Shawn Carter.

Cano sat with Jay-Z and Beyonce at the Grammy Awards. He uploaded the photo on Instagram and captioned it “La familia.” Boras probably could have gotten Seattle to pay the same amount for Cano, but I don’t think it would look as cool to sit next to Boras as it does accompany Jay-Z and Beyonce.

Anyone who believes clients won’t take stuff like this into consideration when picking Jay-Z as an agent is delusional.

CC Sabathia signs with Jay-Z’s sports agency

Jay-Z CC Sabathia

CC Sabathia is now a part of “La Familia.”

The New York Yankees ace has signed with Jay-Z’s sports agency — Roc Nation Sports — both parties announced via Twitter on Thursday night:

Once you get past the velvet drapes, candles and Starbursts, you have to wonder how much Jay-Z will be able to do for CC. Sabathia is signed with the Yankees for the next three seasons and has an option for 2017.

I can’t imagine Sabathia signed in Jan. 2014 to gear up for his big free agency push in 2016. Maybe Jay-Z has some marketing plans for the big guy.

Sabathia now joins Robinson Cano as baseball players signed with Jay-Z. Their other sports clients include Kevin Durant, Victor Cruz and Geno Smith. There are a lot of athletes with New York ties there.

Teddy Bridgewater entering NFL draft, may sign with Jay-Z

Teddy Bridgewater LouisvilleTeddy Bridgewater is leaving Louisville for the NFL draft, and a report says he may sign with Jay-Z’s sports agency.

Bridgewater is a junior and had the option of returning to school, but he had a spectacular bowl game and announced Wednesday that he is going pro. Bridgewater threw for a career-high 447 yards and three touchdowns in Louisville’s 36-9 win over Miami in the Russell Athletic Bowl. The great performance may have propelled his stock even higher. He’s expected to be among the first players selected in the draft.

National Football Post reporter Jason Cole says Bridgewater has been talking to Jay-Z’s Roc Sports Nation and is strongly considering picking them to represent him.

Jay-Z became a sports agent last year and signed Robinson Cano, Kevin Durant, Victor Cruz, Skylar Diggins and Geno Smith.

Bridgewater expressed his thanks to Louisville in a tweet sent Wednesday:

In addition to Bridgewater, Jadeveon Clowney and Brett Hundley (if he decides to go pro) are also said to be considering Roc Nation Sports.

Pete Rose: Jay-Z got Robinson Cano an extra 30 days of vacation – October

Robinson-Cano-Mariners-1Pete Rose was one of the most hard-nosed players to ever sprint around a Major League Baseball diamond. Like most others who give 110% percent on a daily basis, the playoffs were important to baseball’s all-time hits leader. He appeared in 67 playoff games and had over 300 plate appearances and a .321 batting average in the postseason.

Rose doesn’t think Robinson Cano has a whole lot of meaningful fall baseball in his future. During an appearance on ESPN New York 98.7 FM’s “The Michael Kay Show” on Wednesday, Rose was asked about the massive contract Jay-Z was able to help Cano secure. He didn’t pull any punches.

“He [Jay Z] got him a big raise, but he got him an extra 30-day vacation — and it’s called October,” Rose quipped.

I don’t know if I’d write the Mariners off just yet. If Cano is the same player in Seattle that he was with New York, he should provide the M’s with one of the game’s best middle-of-the-order bats for several years to come. Not only that, but Seattle’s brass has said it is not done dealing after signing Cano and has been exploring some intriguing trade possibilities.

As for Jay-Z, he did his job and then some. People were accusing him of costing Cano $50 million just hours before news of the $240 million deal surfaced. Not only that, but he may have gotten the Mariners to outbid themselves for his client.

Right now, everyone is thrilled. If the Mariners miss the playoffs for the next four or five seasons, we can revisit Rose’s vacation theory.

Scott Boras: Jay-Z isn’t the reason for Robinson Cano’s big contract

Scott BorasScott Boras took a shot at Jay-Z in the latest round of the feud between the two businessmen.

Jay-Z recently became a sports agent and has signed several notable athletes including Kevin Durant and Victor Cruz. His biggest move was signing Robinson Cano away from Boras right before the second baseman entered free agency. Jay-Z burned Boras with a diss on a song released over the summer, and now Boras is minimizing the role Jay-Z had in Cano receiving a 10-year, $240 million contract offer from the Mariners.

“When you’re bringing the prettiest girl to the prom, you don’t really pay attention to who he’s dancing with, unless it’s a very unusual step,” Boras said at the winter meetings Wednesday, according to the Associated Press.

The AP says that quote was part of Boras saying it was Cano’s talent, not his representation, that got him the deal.

Boras also said it’s easier for Jay-Z to get a big deal after all the groundwork agents like him have laid.

“It’s very different to be the creator of the umbrella versus those who stand under it,” Boras said.

I’m not sure if I agree with his comments.

Jay-Z and CAA Sports got the Mariners to agree to a 10-year, $240 million deal even when it looked like no other team was offering anything close to that amount. The Yankees were said to be offering around $160 million for seven years and unwilling to go over $200 million to retain him. Steve DelVecchio even explained this week that Jay-Z may have pulled a classic Boras move and gotten Seattle to bid against themselves, which likely added an extra year and $15 million to the contract.

If you can’t credit Jay-Z for a job well done on the Cano contract — which is the fourth-richest in MLB history — then I’m not sure how Boras expects to take credit for any of the big contracts he’s negotiated. Or, by his logic, then the most talented players in baseball don’t even need agents because they’re going to get huge contracts no matter what.

Nice try, Boras, but the comment just makes you look bad.

Jay-Z a sports agent genius? Mariners may have outbid themselves for Robinson Cano

Robinson Cano YankeesWhen many of you woke up last Friday, the sports world was flooded with reports about Jay-Z potentially costing Robinson Cano as much as $50 million by angering the Seattle Mariners. According to several sources, Cano and the Mariners had agreed to a nine-year, $225 million contract on Thursday night. Talks reportedly hit a snag when Jay-Z asked for a 10-year, $250 million contract at last minute that infuriated Seattle’s brass.

“Robinson Cano should have never left Scott Boras!” they all said.

Before we knew it, the Mariners had caved and Cano agreed to his massive deal. And the most amazing part about it is Jay-Z may have actually gotten the Mariners to outbid themselves with their final offer.

According to Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News, the Mariners believed some other team had offered Cano nine years and $225 million. Who was that team? Why haven’t we heard anything about Cano being in legitimate talks with any other team or receiving any other offers that were north of $200 million? Probably because there was no other team.

The only other known offer Cano received was something in the range of seven years and around $160 million from the Yankees. That is nowhere near what Cano eventually signed for, and we previously told you that New York was not willing to go beyond $200 million to keep Cano. It now seems like there is a good chance no team was going to blow a $200 million offer out of the water.

Therefore, we are left to assume that Jay-Z handled Cano’s contract negotiations like a genius. Unless someone can prove there was another team that made a competitive offer, the only possible explanation is that Jay-Z dangled his high-profile client in front of the Mariners and then pulled him back. By that time, Seattle could already see the way the future of its franchise looked with Cano. They weren’t walking away from the table, and Jay-Z probably knew that. All indications are he handled the situation with perfection.

H/T Baseball Nation via Deadspin