Super sports Rich Paul knows what he wants, and he revealed on Oct.14 at the UNLOQ404 creators summit in Atlanta. And, for now, it is not ownership of an NFL or NBA team.
According to People Magazine, Paul’s assertion is partially one of prudence; he simply doesn’t have the money required to be a principal owner of a major American sports team. Paul also enjoys sitting on the basketball court floor andthe ability to park near players, and he would want a salary cap of some kind if he were to get involved on that level with a team franchise in the NBA or NFL.
When asked about his stake in the team at the event, Paul coyly responded, “So, we will see what happens with that.”
As the Phoenix Suns were in the position of shopping the ownership of their team in 2022 due to Robert Sarver’s highly publicized mistreatment of employees, use of racially insensitive language, and language involving sexual harassment of female employees, the topic of how much the team would be sold for inevitably surfaced. According to NBC Sports, the cost of owning an NBA team has skyrocketed over the last half-decade. The Suns eventually sold for $4 billion to Mat Ishiba, a mortgage lender executive and former NCAA basketball champion. Sarver also owned the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury, but they are not valued nearly as highly as the Suns franchise.
Rich Paul’s net worth is estimated at somewhere around $120 million by Parade. Paul does have enough to invest in a sport that is valued at a fraction of the cost of the major leagues in American sports, pickleball. According to People, Paul joins sports stars Patrick Mahomes II, Naomi Osaka, and Nick Kyrgios, as well as musician Kygo in the ownership group of the Miami Pickleball Club. According to Front Office Sports, teams in Major League Pickleball are valued at up to $10 million currently, which represents a much more affordable investment.
Tom Brady, LeBron James, Kevin Durant, and others have essentially gotten in on the ground floor of pickleball and helped raise the profile of the fast-growing league and sport; teams have increased in value 100 fold their initial worth over two years.
MLP’s CEO Julio DePietro told CNBC that team values are way up from the $100,000 they were valued at when the league started in 2021. DePietro thinks the league has a massive ceiling, he told CNBC.
“We have barely turned on any of the advertising knobs, much less the subscription knobs,” DePietro said. “We think there’s a massive opportunity to leverage a lot of the installed base, the excitement behind it, the avidity of the fans, of the players, and there’s tons of sponsorship and marketing opportunities for the league.”
Paul’s investment could end up being extremely lucrative for the sports world’s latest super agent, who is also dating Grammy-winning recording artist Adele.
Paul’s debut book, a memoir titled “Lucky Me: A Memoir of Changing the Odds,” was released on Oct. 10. So far, the book has garnered rave reviews from readers on the popular book rating site Goodreads. USA Today also has the book listed at number 9 on its Best-Selling Booklist, which they note combines both physical and electronic copies of works sold.
Paul reflected a bit on the process of writing the book and what he hopes comes across to readers of the book.
“When you read the book, you get to dive into a lot of the things that I had to overcome,” Paul told People. “But hence the title of Lucky Me. I was lucky enough to be able to continue down a path where there wasn’t a ton of light, but the door was cracked with a little light and I was smart enough not to invest in the pitfalls that were there for me every day in my environment.”
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