LATEST ARTICLE FROM PLAYER X.... based on the clues on this article, i am even more certain it is Grant Hill.
* Player went to college
* player had endorsements with drinks and grooming products
*Players rookie contract was a negotiation process (so pre 1999 CBA)
WES WESLEY MAKES IT HAPPEN
Who is the most powerful person in the NBA? David Stern? No. LeBron James? No. Kobe Bryant? Nope. It's Wes Wesley. Most fans don't know who he is. Most players, agents and GMs can't figure out who he works for. (More on that in a minute.) But we all know this: Wes is the greatest connector of players, coaches, GMs, agents, celebrities and big-time sponsors in sports. Need tickets to a Jay-Z concert, a new sneaker deal or the phone number of a general manager, he's your man. There's a reason we call him Uncle Wes.
The first time I met him I was in college, and I was like, "Who is this guy?" He was advising a teammate, which made me skeptical. Then I noticed he had his name on his Jordans, which was pretty cool. I'd never seen that before on anyone who wasn't in the NBA, so I knew Wes was legit.
After I got into the league I ran into him again because he was friends with a guy on my team. He took me to dinner and told me if I ever needed anything to just call. Right away I knew he was different from the other sketchy dudes hanging around because he didn't ask me for anything. Years later, the man has hooked me up with everything from sports drink endorsements to grooming commercials. When I wanted a new sneaker deal, Wes was my first call. My agent may have negotiated the contract, but Wes made it happen. And he's never asked for a dime, ever. Nobody really knows who pays him. I'm good friends with him, and I still don't know.
Sticky situation? Uncle Wes is your man.
Another reason guys respect Wes is that the dude will give it to you straight up. Most guys who hang around young, rich athletes won't do that because they're afraid of getting fired. But you can't fire Wes. He doesn't work for you. He's like that dude from "Pulp Fiction" who gets called in to clean up sticky situations. Sometimes it's a young guy who is great on the court but sucks at life. Wes will straighten his ass out. He'll say, "You're coming with me, young fella." Then he'll lay it out on the table like, "Dude, you're screwin' up." He'll look at his entourage and say, "This person stays, but these clowns gotta go." Sometimes it's a coach who calls him for help, or a teammate or an agent. But he gets through to guys because he never asks for anything. And it doesn't hurt that he remembers the name of everyone he's ever met.
One of my favorite Wes stories is from a few years back, when he completely tore apart a well-known superstar's entourage for acting like idiots. Up to that point, no one had the balls to call out this guy's friends. The player's manager was professional and always wore a suit, but the other clowns around him were acting dumb and dressing like slobs. So one day Wes just loses it and curses out the manager. "These bums are dragging down the entire brand! You guys are repping your friend and walking around in these raggedy clothes acting like dumb-asses! Get outta here!" Sure enough, they were gone, like that. That player has been straight since.
Because he has the ear of every player, coach, GM and sneaker company, a lot of people around basketball like to hate on Wes. Agents worry that he's going to steal their clients and steer them to one of his favorite agents. They think he's a glorified runner, a dude who agents send around to befriend players, get them into clubs and eventually get them to sign a contract. It's a shady business. But Wes is not one of those guys. Wes isn't running for anyone. I'm sure he's got his ways to make money, but he's interested only in setting up deals and making sure the people around you are looking out for you. When I got to the NBA he asked me if my agent was taking care of me. I told him about my contract, and Wes said it was cool, that my agent did a good job. He just wanted to know that I was taken care of.
Agents aren't the only ones wary of Wes, though. He scares GMs because he has the power to convince players they need a change of scenery when their contracts are up. I wouldn't be surprised if he's in LeBron's ear about Cleveland. And the rumor now is that he recently signed on with CAA -- home to LeBron, Melo and D-Wade -- to be an agent for college and NBA coaches. I guess the thinking goes: He's already friends with Calipari, why not make it official? If this is true, we'll finally know where some of his money comes from. But it won't be all of it; Wes will still be setting up deals all over. I'm just glad he's my friend.