Today’s NBA Players, Tomorrow’s NBA Executives
By: Talia Bargil
Amid the array of basketball clinics and tournaments, summer league competition and USA Basketball practices that blanketed Las Vegas this summer, one driven group of NBA players were planning for their lives after basketball…in basketball.
The Leadership Development Program, established by the National Basketball Players Association (NBPA), offers current and retired NBA players who are interested in pursuing a post-playing career in an NBA front office with the knowledge, resources and tools to follow that very path.
This past July, numerous players attended the four-day program, which is tailored to provide hands-on training and education about the inner workings of an NBA team’s front office. With topics ranging from building a team to salary cap information, free agency, scouting, the draft and more, the participants were treated to a number of panel discussions featuring high-profile NBA and team executives.
In its second year, this year’s program featured the likes of current and retired players including Jason Collins, Chris Dudley, Maurice Evans, Adonal Foyle, Mike James, Richard Jefferson, Roger Mason, Jr., Corey Maggette, Eduardo Najera, Chris Owens, Theo Ratliff, Sean Rooks, Malik Rose, Awvee Storey, Etan Thomas and Luke Walton.
“The Leadership Development Program gave me a great base of understanding about all of the different jobs and roles in an NBA front office. We learned about all kinds of different paths and careers, and what has worked for successful front office people. The days were long, but fun, and we were always learning something new,” said Luke Walton, two-time NBA Champion.
Equipping themselves with the ability to further impact the league and its future, the Leadership Program is helping NBA players stay in the game long after their playing days are over.
“If knowledge is power, then I am much more certain of my path. This program has inspired, transformed and fortified my skills in forging a path in the business of an NBA front office,” said Adonal Foyle, 13-year NBA veteran. “I now have much more knowledge of the different positions available to me in and the work involved in these positions. Thank you for the knowledge, NBPA.”