As LeBron James Unveils Millionaire Rich Paul’s “Secret Sauce”, Best Friend Makes Personal Confession

Published 10/11/2023, 1:33 PM EDT

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Agent of superstars like LeBron James, Anthony Davis, and Draymond Green, Rich Paul’s rise to the very top of the NBA ladder is nothing short of remarkable. He has become one of the most influential people in the modern NBA. Paul has also roped in NFL superstar Jalen Hurts into his growing list of clients.

Paul has brokered almost $4 billion dollars worth of contracts in his career. He credits his sharp negotiation skills to a tough childhood on the streets of Ohio.

Rich Paul’s “Secret Sauce”


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Born on December 16th, 1981, in Cleveland, Ohio. The east side of Cleveland has gained a reputation for drug violence and illegal activities. And Paul attributes his negotiation skills to the challenging experiences of his early life. Which included involvement in substance-related activities and gambling.

He said, “Just preparing. Those experiences allow you to develop things that you thought at that time was of detriment. But today they are assets”.


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He added further, “Developing that mental toughness, understanding that there is a balance to life and obviously to business. And never allowing yourself to get complacent because I understand what it’s like not to have. It’s a different approach, there is no entitlement”.

Recently, Rich Paul has been doing a media tour to promote his memoir, Lucky Me. His best friend LeBron James wrote the foreword of the book. The 4x NBA MVP talks about Paul’s “secret sauce” in the section. LeBron thinks Paul’s superpower is understanding what people truly need. Paul said, “Growing up working in my dad’s store, seeing the things that people went through in their lives. And when you work in a store, we had to sometimes provide for people that didn’t have it and we wasn’t allowed to judge people based on that. My dad was really big on how you treated other people. So I always lead with that”.


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Paul’s Tough Childhood

Significant trauma marked Rich Paul’s childhood. Raised in a tough neighborhood on the east side of Cleveland, Ohio. He faced daunting challenges, including exposure to drugs and crime. Paul’s experiences of witnessing substance-related activities and hustling dice were part of his formative years, shaping his perspective on life. Paul, in his memoir, opened up about his childhood and being separated from his mother. During the 1980s, substance abuse gripped Cleveland and one victim was Minerva, Paul’s mother. Paul’s father, Big Rich, enrolled Paul in a catholic school, away from the neighborhood.


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These hardships instilled resilience and street smarts in him. It later contributed to his success in the world of sports representation. Paul’s journey from a tough background to a successful agent inspires others facing similar challenges.

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Written by:

Dushyant Singh


One take at a time

Dushyant Singh is an NBA writer at EssentiallySports. His basketball script journey began in 2020 when he was captivated by the Los Angeles Lakers’ triumphant NBA championship win. Before that he was merely dribbling and dunking as a boy next door.
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Edited by:

Saumya Khanduja