Just Who Are the "NBA to Europe" Market Makers?

Marcus ShockleyCorrespondent ISeptember 9, 2008

Calling the move of NBA players to European teams a trend is sort of like calling the introduction of vanilla ice cream a bold new choice.

It's not like NBA players haven't been bouncing around the overseas leagues in Europe, Asia, and South America for a long time. There's always a little more money for guys with "league" experience, even if that experience amounted to riding the end of the bench in a nice suit and cheering.

Now with Brandon Jennings (a player who technically hasn't actually played in the NBA yet) and Josh Childress making the jump, we are supposedly awash in big time players making a mass exodus to greener pastures.

Well, whether or not that's true (and it would be nice to get paid in Euros, if you can actually cash the check, which is often easier said than done in certain leagues), someone is making the behind the scenes moves to broker these deals.

It's not like wealthy Greek basketball team owners have Josh Childress on speed dial. So who are these shadowy movers and shakers?

Guys like Lon Babby and Jim Tanner, D.C. area lawyers and also—ahem—agents for Mr. Childress. The most interesting thing about Babby and Tanner? They don't charge a percentage. They charge by the hour.