Pistons C Nerlens Noel, Klutch Sports Group settle legal battle after $58 million lawsuit
Detroit Pistons center Nerlens Noel has settled his legal battle with his former agents at Klutch Sports Group 17 months after suing them for $58 million, according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania.
According to a statement received by Charania, Noel has agreed to pay Klutch full fees on a $5 million deal he signed with the New York Knicks in 2020 and withdraw all legal proceedings against the agency.
In his initial lawsuit, Noel claimed that Klutch’s Rich Paul, who also represents LeBron James, Anthony Davis and Trae Young, had breached his fiduciary duty to Noel during a three year period in which the mega-agent represented the big man with little success.
After allegedly convincing Noel to turn down a four-year, $70 million extension offer from the Dallas Mavericks, Noel claimed Paul and his team regularly failed to follow up on their promises or free agent interest from teams, especially after an injury-riddled 2017-18 season that caused Noel to play on the league minimum the next season.
Noel claimed he only received that Knicks contract Knicks president Leon Rose reached out to his friend and advisor to set up a meeting. He would drop Klutch as his agent later that year, but will now pay the agency its full commission as part of the settlement.
A judge dismissed Noel’s lawsuit last September, sending it to arbitration.
Noel having to pay Klutch as part of a settlement of his lawsuit against them is a rather odd outcome, and likely speaks to the legal and financial pressures that led to the lawsuit in the first place.