Ben Simmons, the LSU prodigy, will sign with the LeBron James-funded Klutch Sports agency for his pro representation, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical.
Even prior to taking the college circuit by storm, Simmons drew comparisons with James for his unique passing ability and freakish athleticism. With LSU failing to qualify for the NCAA tournament before deciding against accepting an NIT bid, Simmons’ college career effectively ended Sunday and put him on the fast track to the NBA.
According to the report, James and agent Rich Paul began scouting Simmons as a potential future client back in 2014. Due to this, they hired Simmons’ sister, Emily Bush, as a marketing/branding executive based in Scottsdale, Arizona. Clearly, this deal has been in the works for years.
Simmons, a native of Australia, also attended the LeBron James Skills Academy in 2014. “The arrangement for Klutch to represent Simmons has been in place for over a year, and agency papers to formalize the partnership are expected to be signed soon, sources said. Simmons will train in either Cleveland or Los Angeles in the predraft process, league sources said,” writes Wojnarowski.
Back in December, James and Simmons showered praises on each other. While Simmons called James a “big brother”, the former said he doesn’t mind the constant comparisons. “I don’t mind it (the comparisons). Someone’s going to be compared to someone all the time and I don’t mind him being compared to me. People not only recognizing what he does on the floor, but he’s a great kid, too,” James said of Simmons.
Ben Simmons, who averaged 19.2 points, 11.8 rebounds and 4.8 assists for LSU, is widely expected to be drafted No.1 overall in June’s NBA Draft. At this stage, Duke’s Brandon Ingram is the only other name being floated as a possible No. 1 overall pick.