There are many personalities within the sports world. Every sport, team and athlete makes up the foundation of what we refer to as the sports world. Few people are privy to the happenings behind the scenes of a sports athlete. Beyond the training, beyond the interviews and beyond the autograph sessions.
Beyond all of that lies one of the misunderstood positions in sports. A position where the likes of Drew Rosenhaus & Scott Boras have drawn the spotlight. A spotlight that brings to light not only the success of the agent, but has also left a stereotype of what exactly an agent is and how one conducts himself.
While the antics have sometimes left most sports fans a bit disenchanted with the agent there can be no argument about the success they achieve for their clients and themselves. But just as different as one athlete’s personality and conduct differs from the next, so does the agent.
J.R Rickert is a prime example of the opposite side of that spectrum. While Rickert achieves great success in the industry he goes about doing so in a different way. That approach has made Rickert one of the hottest agents in the business and an agent even the fans can feel a connection to.
Because unlike many others in his profession, J.R is sometimes more identifiable by his other gig at Fox Sports Radio as a Sports Talk host. “I was a broadcast journalism major at St. John Fisher, so doing the Fox Sports Radio show always brings me back to one of my early passions” said Rickert.
“It is a lot of fun because we are on the air talking about football and promoting our clients. I grew up around sports and it has always been a part of my life. I played football and started all 4 years at St. John Fisher so transitioning to the broadcast side of things has been a lot of fun for me.”
And therein lies the difference. While most agents instill an image of a fast talking, flashy, corporate business man, Rickert connects with his clients and fans differently. Having a sports talk forum on a very popular radio show has given Rickert a unique perspective on the sports world. It also has connected him to fans, a connection not many agents can achieve.
Maybe it’s because everyone who has met J.R Rickert, from his clients to his colleagues describe Rickert as a hard working, sports news obsessed, genuine nice guy. Maybe it’s because sports fans like you and I can look at J.R Rickert and see a passionate sports fan who happens to be an agent, not a “fast talking business man in a suit“. Maybe it’s the fact that Rickert has truly engages the sports world like no other agent. A radio show to talk with fans, a blog to post sports related articles as a fan and a website that gives you an inside look. Whatever it is, Rickert clearly a different type of sports agent.
“I think what differentiates me from the others is the overall level of services that
we provide our clients. We really take a lot of pride in going far beyond the contract
negotiations. We offer our players every type of possible service you can think of, and
we don’t tack on extra fees. Many of the clients can’t believe just how much they get
from us in the way of services.
I also believe that my experience is starting to set me apart from others. There are just not that many agents who have lasted in the business for more than ten years. The contacts that I have, and the experiences from which I have benefited, all translate into better representation for my clients.”
But it can easily be determined that J.R Rickert is simply a sports fan who loves sports and has worked hard to be working in the field he loved. Interestingly, Rickert had a long and unique path to the sports industry. Before he was helping players and teams come to a contract agreement and even before he made a big name for himself at Fox Sports Radio, Rickert was a High School Principal in Upstate, New York. His ability to connect with people has transcended throughout his professional career.
“I learned many things from my career as an educator and I believe that I will always
be an educator. The skills of motivation, perseverance, and advocating for others are all
aspects that I brought with me to my career as an agent.
The sports industry gave me an opportunity to combine a number of interests into a very rewarding field. I took many chances when I decided to become an agent and several people told me that an educator from the Capital Region would never survive in the cut-throat world of sports agents.
But, eleven years later, I am not only surviving but competing with the very best agents in the country and I have the very best clients that you could ever ask for in the world of
Not only surviving but becoming very successful. Just like many of his clients, Rickert rose to the challenge of a tough career transition. But the challenges didn’t stop there. Not only has Rickert faced the challenge of a career change in a down economy, but Rickert managed to thrive in his new line of work despite a lockout riddled 2011.
The NFL Lockout was one challenge agents like Rickert faced.
“The NFL lockout was very challenging at times. As an agent, I had the same
expenses for my clients that I always have, but the revenue was on hold. I needed to take
care of my players and make sure that they were properly advised every step of the way.
I also had to make personal sacrifices so that I could financially take care of my clients’
needs, especially for the rookies.”
But just as soon as one challenge passes, another arises. This time in the form of an NBA Lockout. While the term “lockout” is the same in both scenarios, Rickert will be the first one to tell you that they are two completely different animals that pose different obstacles for agents such as himself.
“The NBA lockout, in my opinion, is going to be a very difficult process to solve
the differences and bridge the gap between the owners and players. The NFL’s lowest
earning franchise, the Buffalo Bills, is worth more than the NBA’s highest earning
franchise, the New York Knicks. Therefore, the NFL has a much greater pie of total
revenue and makes it easier to devise revenue sharing solutions.
Also, in the NFL, not one franchise is losing money, whereas, in the NBA, there are several franchises that are in financial trouble. I expect the NBA lockout to last much longer than the NFL lockout. However, the NBA players have alternative places to play and at least earn something. This option did not exist for the NFL players.”
Needless to say a day in the life of a sports agent has become that much tougher. In an industry that survives in a tough economy while having to endure numerous economic difficulties created by league lockouts, Rickert has found success and a formula for winning.
“A day in the life of a sports agent is very unpredictable. When you have over 80
clients, you can never tell what is going to happen. Players get signed; players get
released from their teams; players get hurt. Anything and everything is possible. You
really have to be ready for anything at all times.”
But from educator to radio show host and into the sports agent industry it can be safe to assume that no two days were the same for JR Rickert.
In the sports world there is a saying when it comes to measuring success “what have you done lately” ? Although a cruel anecdote, despite it’s harsh underlying honesty he has reached a level of success that many agents strive for every day. But he also has bigger things in mind for the future.
“In five years, I would like to be recognized as a top 5 NFL agent. I would like to
experience what it would be like to represent a Number 1 overall pick in the draft. I
would like to have an even stronger presence on the national level. In ten years, I would
like to be more established in the NBA and MLB, while maintaining my strong hold
in the NFL.
I would also like to be working with a championship caliber boxer. In
broadcasting, I would like to create and produce my own weekly NFL show for local or
It’s hard to argue with what J.R Rickert has already accomplished. With that said it is far more difficult to conceive betting against him to achieve more than he anticipates.
But it is easy to agree that Rickert is on his way to big things. And much like the Draft Stock of many of his clients on draft day, Rickert’s stock is rising.
25th Annual Muhammad Ali Celebrity Fight Night, A Charity Knockout Event
The stars came out last night to give, show support, perform, and to continue to raise money and awareness in hopes of one day find a cure to knockout Parkinson’s disease.
Going back to year number 1, The first ever event was held at the Ritz-Carlton operated on a much smaller scale than today, which is now held at the JW Marriott Desert Ridge Resort & Spa.
At the very first Celebrity Fight Night With the help of Phoenix Suns Charles Barkley, Dan Majerle, and the valley of the sun’s very own Louie Espinoza, Tony Baltazar, and boxing champion Michael Carbajal who by the way fought in the ring with over sized boxing gloves.
The ”Puttin on the Fists at The Ritz” first Celebrity Fight Night scored a knockout win and is STILL punching on through today for the Greatest Of All Time, The late great Muhammad Ali.
Last night I was honored to attend and speak to a few of the stars, one was NFL legendary kicker Nick Lowery, Mr. Lowery now spends most of his time at charitable endeavors and advocating for alternative medicine research and is also a spokesman for Kannalife, Inc to raise awareness for CTE and players safety in hopes of one day having intercellular “helmets,” like Kannalife’s CBD and KLS-13019, is so important to potentially treat the brain.
I asked Lowery what is his favorite Ali memory, and Lowery’s response: ” Taking Ali to the NBA All-Star game one year as we sat behind Jay-Z and Beyonce and watching Beyonce wave to Ali, Beyonce spoke to us, she is the sweetest person. Also taking Ali to the locker rooms and watching Kobe Bryant, Lebron James, and all the other all stars turn into children at the sight of seeing their hero the greatest of all time Muhammad Ali walk through the doors, what an experience that was.”
In asking the very same question to R&B Singer Brian McKnight, ”I have so many Ali memories but my favorite was watching Ali knockout George Foreman at home with my dad. The odds were against Ali and Ali being the great fighter that he was he beat the odds and stopped a much younger powerful puncher in Foreman. You know, I am still a big boxing fan today, I enjoy watching Tyson Fury out of the current heavyweights.”
And what did legendary former champion boxer, Micheal Carbajal have to say? ”It’s truly an honor to attend this great event, at the very first one proceeds went to my 9th street boxing gym and now 24 years later it’s still going strong, a great charity”. Mr. Carbajal went on to talk some boxing with me,
Carbajal- ” You see Spence/Garcia?”
Me- ” Yes, it was brutal, what did you think?”
Carbajal- ” Not good for Mikey Garcia at all, but he is still my favorite current boxer, and he beats everybody at 135 pounds if he can make the weight there. Mikey would knockout Lomachenko in 4 rounds at 135.”
Me- ”Wow, you really think that? Both are great technical boxers but I can’t see a 4 round fight between them, so you really think it would only take Mikey 4 rounds to stop Lomachenko?”
Carbajal- ” I KNOW so!”
Special honorees for the evening include fabled American music producer and 27-time Grammy Award-winner Quincy Jones, Arizona State University President Dr. Michael Crow and Dr. Abraham Lieberman, the medical director of the Movement Disorders Clinic at Barrow Neurological Institute and Renee Parsons of the Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation.
“For 25 years, we’ve treated Celebrity Fight Night audiences to the world’s greatest entertainers and this year will be no different as we welcome Barry Manilow,” said Jimmy Walker, Founder of Celebrity Fight Night. “With the help of our celebrity friends and incredibly generous donors, we are once again excited to raise millions of dollars and make a difference in the lives of those who need our support.”
About Celebrity Fight Night
Celebrity Fight Night has gifted more than $86 million over the past 24 years benefiting the Muhammad Ali Parkinson Center at Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix, as well as several other worthy charities.
The black-tie event features a cocktail reception, silent auction, elegant dinner, and an exciting live auction including one-of-a-kind luxury items and experiences. Celebrity Fight Night Foundation is a nonprofit organization that was founded in 1994 by Jimmy Walker and supports the Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix, as well as numerous other charities. For more information, visitwww.celebrityfightnight.org.
Canelo Alvarez/ Daniel “Miracle Man” Jacobs L.A. Press Tour Quotes & 5th Annual Box Fan Expo News & Spence/Garcia Fight Pick
Canelo Alvarez (50-1-2, 34 KOs), WBC, WBA, Lineal and Ring Magazine Middleweight World Champion, and Daniel “Miracle Man” Jacobs (35-2, 29 KOs), IBF Middleweight World Champion, completed the final stop of their three-city press tour with a spectacular press event at Microsoft Theater at L.A. Live.The 12-round unification fight will take place at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas Saturday May 4 and will be streamed live exclusively on DAZN.
Below is what the participants had to say at the event:
CANELO ALVAREZ, WBC, WBA, Lineal and Ring Magazine Middleweight World Champion:
“I know Jacobs is a tough opponent and it’s going to be work, but I’ve always believed to be the best you must beat the best. I love challenges. I want people to experience a good fight when they come watch my fights. I may lose, but my heart is a winning heart and I want to give the fans a spectacular finish and I’m going to put up a good fight.”
DANIEL JACOBS, IBF Middleweight World Champion:
“I have the will and desire to go inside to go in that ring and be victorious and I see myself with my hand raised by the end of night. I know the odds are stacked against me and Canelo’s resume speaks for itself, but he’s never faced a tall, fast and big guy all at once and that’s what I’m going to give him. We’re going to give you what you’re looking for and the fans going to get a great fight come May 4.”
EDDY REYNOSO, Head Trainer and Manager of Canelo Alvarez:
“Our objective this year is win all the belts and become the first Mexican to win the all the world championships.”
JOSE “CHEPO” REYNOSO, Trainer and Manager of Canelo Alvarez:
“The moment he set foot in the gym we knew he was something special, the day he debuted he was great, but the day he retires the world will know how great of a fighter he is.”
ANDRE ROZIER, Trainer of Danny Jacobs:
“Jacobs is the best middleweight walking on this planet, his capabilities, skillset and gentleman ship will be what wins the fight on May 4.”
OSCAR DE LA HOYA, Chairman and CEO of Golden Boy Promotions:
“I guarantee this is going to be the fight of the year. You have two fighters who don’t have a quit in their game, this is a fight for the ages. The fact that Jacobs and Canelo both want to be great, there’s no other way than to make this one great for the fans, they will get their money’s worth come May 4.”
FRANK SMITH, CEO of Matchroom Boxing:
“We believe Jacobs will unify all of those belts and he’ll take on Canelo and win that fight.”
JOSEPH MARKOWSKI, Executive Vice President, DAZN North America:
“We’re deeply honored and proud to be exclusively showing this champion versus champion fight in the U.S.”
Canelo vs. Jacobs is a 12-round fight for the WBC, WBA, Lineal, Ring Magazine and IBF Middleweight World Titles presented by Golden Boy Promotions in association with Matchroom Boxing. The event is sponsored by Tecate, “THE OFFICIAL BEER OF BOXING” and Hennessy “Never Stop. Never Settle.” The event will take place Saturday, May 4, 2019 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas and will be streamed live exclusively on DAZN.
Tickets for Canelo vs. Jacobs are one sale now and are priced at $2,505, $1,505, $1,205, $805, $605, $405, $305, $205 and $105, not including applicable service charges and taxes. There will be a limit of 10 per person at the $2,505, $1,505, $1,205, $805, $605, $405, and $305 price levels with a limit of two (2) per person at the $205 and $105 price levels. To charge by phone with a major credit card, call 888-9-AXS-TIX (888-929-7849). Tickets also will be available for purchase at www.t-mobilearena.com or www.axs.com.
Devin Haney to make an appearance at the 5th Annual Box Fan Expo on May 4
Undefeated boxing phenom Devin Haney has confirmed that he will appear, have a booth and hold a Meet & Greet with his fans at the Las Vegas Convention Center for the 5th Annual Box Fan Expo on Saturday May 4, 2019 from 10a.m to 5pm, during Cinco De Mayo weekend. The Boxing Expo will also coincide with the highly anticipated fight between Canelo Alvarez vs Danny Jacobs, that will take place later that evening at the T-Mobile Arena.
Haney will make his 1st appearance at this years’ Expo, and will be signing gloves, photos, personal items and memorabilia. Haney will also have merchandise and products to sell for fans to enjoy. Boxing Fans will also have an opportunity to take pictures with this boxing sensation also known as “The Dream”.
Haney joins Earnie Shavers, Al Bernstein, Michael Spinks, WBC, Erik Morales, James Toney and Jessie Vargas as an early commitment to this year’s Box Fan Expo.
About Devin Haney
Devin Haney is quickly becoming the new sensation of boxing today, building an undefeated record of 21 fights, 13 of them by KO, since his debut on December 11, 2015. Haney has defined his aspirations to shape up and become the new star of boxing and to become world champion. A young man who has dedicated his life to the sport since he was seven years old, he has won 7 national championships as amateur, shaping a record of 130-8. He became the youngest member of the national Junior Team and was the youngest boxer to win the Junior World Championship in Nevada. On January 11, Haney took another significant step towards becoming a world champion, by defeating South Africa’s Xolisani Ndongeni by a wide unanimous decision in 10 rounds, in the main event of a card at the StageWorks in Shreveport, Louisiana and capturing the WBC International and WBO Inter-Continental lightweight Titles. Haney was born in San Francisco, and raised in Oakland, California but has been living in Las Vegas since he was 7 years old and he’s managed by his father William Haney. Devin knows that this is only the beginning of a brilliant career, hoping, planning and working hard to become the next boxing idol.
About Box Fan Expo
Box Fan Expo has been a huge success with fans and boxing industry people. Many boxing stars have attended the last four Expos such as Floyd Mayweather, Mike Tyson, Roberto Duran, Tommy Hearns, Juan Manuel Marquez, Marco Antonio Barrera, Erik Morales, Roy Jones Jr., Marcos Maidana, Andre Ward, Errol Spence Jr., Sergio Martinez, Keith Thurman, Danny Garcia, Tim Bradley, Deontay Wilder, Amir Khan, Shawn Porter, Fernando Vargas, Zab Judah, James Toney, Vinny Pazienza, Mikey Garcia , Mia St.John, Leo Santa Cruz, Abner Mares Maricela Cornejo, Badou Jack, Terry Norris , Riddick Bowe , Earnie Shavers, Leon Spinks, Danny Jacobs, Jorge Linares, Brandon Rios and many more…
Exhibitors such as boxing gear, apparel, new equipment’s, energy drinks, alcohol, supplement products, broadcasting media, sanctioning bodies and other companies who wish to participate will once again have a chance to showcase their brand to fans, media and the boxing industry.
Tickets to the Box Fan Expo are available online at:
Box Fan Expo is the ultimate boxing fan experience event, which allows fans to Meet and Greet Boxing Superstars of today, current and former world champions, Legends of the sport and other boxing Celebrities at their booth. On Site, fans will experience different activities from Autograph Sessions, Photo Sessions, FaceOff with your favorite boxers, as well as a chance to purchase merchandise and memorabilia from their booth, plus so much more… you won’t want to miss this must-attend Expo!
Box Fan Expo will also feature top boxing organizations, promoters, ring card girls, famous trainers and commentators as well as boxing gear companies “ALL UNDER ONE ROOF”.
Throughout the next couple of months leading up to the event, there will be weekly updates on the many stars that will commit their appearance at the Boxing Expo. And for anyone in the Boxing industry or other Exhibitors (non-industry), who would like to be involved and reserve a Booth, contact Box Fan Expo:
Telephone number: (514) 572-7222 or Las Vegas Number (702) 997-1927
For any inquiries please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
For More information on Box Fan Expo visit: http://www.boxfanexpo.com
Follow Box Fan Expo on Twitter and Instagram: @BoxFanExpo
Follow Box Fan Expo on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/BoxFanExpo
March 16: Arlington, Texas (Fox PPV)
Errol Spence Jr.(24-0) Vs. Mikey Garcia(39-0) For Spence’s IBF Welterweight Title- For starters, I would like to point out that I really admire Garcia for daring to be great in jumping up 1 or 2 weight classes(depending on who you ask) to face the much bigger Spence.
Thing is though, that there are weight classes for a reason and in this bout, Mikey may have bitten off more than he can chew. I mean on paper, Mikey is the sharper more technical boxer, yet thing is that no fight is ever fought on paper.
Mikey is a brilliant boxer that takes subtle steps towards his foe in which doing so it places him at all times within striking distance. So in short, Mikey never over extends himself so he never wastes punches or motion.
Spence on the other hand is a big and strong welterweight that is known to carve up his opponents mid section. Spence also has a hard stiff jab that he employs often and very well.
In this clash I am expecting Spence to hurt Mikey with right hook body shots and short left hooks upstairs. Mikey will need to box in and out and must look to keep Spence turning.
I see Spence taking this in a 8 rounds to 4 comfortable unanimous win. But I also would be far from shocked if Spence lands something nasty to stop Garcia in his tracks late in the fight around the 9th round.
Bonus Pick: David Benavidez(20-0) over J’ Leon Love(24-2-1) by a brutal 8th round TKO.
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