Nerlens Noel has filed a lawsuit against Rich Paul and his firm, Klutch Sports, claiming he lost $58 million in potential salary while he was represented by them from 2017 to 2020.
Noel took the action after Klutch recently filed a grievance with the National Basketball Players Association, claiming Noel hadn’t paid $200,000 in commission on his previous one-year contract with the Knicks.
Noel claims breach of fiduciary duty, breach of contract and negligence.
At the start of free agency in 2017, Noel was represented by agent Happy Walters. Noel claims in the lawsuit he was offered a four-year, $70 million deal by the Mavericks, a number that was reported by several news outlets that summer. During the free-agency process, Noel said he fired Walters and hired Paul after they met at Ben Simmons’ birthday party in Los Angeles.
Noel said Paul advised him to pass on the $70 million offer to accept the qualifying offer and become an unrestricted free agent the next summer.
The following season, Noel broke his thumb and missed 42 games as his numbers dropped.
Noel didn’t re-sign with Dallas and played the next two seasons for the Oklahoma City Thunder, making the league minimum, $3.7 million combined, as a backup.
Noel played last season for the Knicks, making $5 million. Noel remained with Paul for all four contracts. Noel signed a three-year deal with the Knicks this offseason that guarantees him $27.7 million with another $4.1 million in possible incentives. The deal was negotiated by agent George Langberg.