New York Yankees second baseman Robinson Cano has left notorious sports agent Scott Boras and signed with CAA and Roc Nation Sports, a new sports management company launched by Roc Nation founder Shawn "Jay-Z" Carter.
Roc Nation announced the launch of its sports division on Tuesday, and will partner with Hollywood's biggest talent agency to represent Cano, a four-time All-Star, as well as future clients.
Roc Nation and CAA will represent clients on and off the field, though it remains unclear if Roc Nation will represent any clients independent of CAA.
"Because of my love of sports, it was a natural progression to form a company where we can help top athletes in various sports the same way we have been helping artists in the music industry for years," Carter said in a statement.
Carter, former chief of Roc-A-Fella Records and Def Jam, founded Roc Nation in 2008 after signing a $150 million deal with concert giant Live Nation. Roc Nation both signs artists for recording, like J. Cole, and functions as a management company, representing clients such as Shakira, Rihanna and M.I.A.
A multi-platinum rapper turned mogul, Carter is a minority owner of the Brooklyn Nets basketball franchise and often incudes references to sports in his rhymes. Already a clothing line founder and clubowner, Carter adds a new enterprise to his growing list with the sports firm, and Cano is a good place to start.
The Dominican's current contract concludes at the end of the season, and he is in line for a long-term, nine-figure deal. Cano has won four Silver Slugger Awards, which honor the best hitter at a given position, as well as two Gold Glove Awards, which honor the best fielder at a given position.
"At this point in my career, I am ready to take a more active role in my endeavors both on and off the field," Cano said in a statement. "I am confident that the pairing of Roc Nation Sports and CAA Sports will be essential in helping me accomplish my short- and long-term goals. I am making this important decision now so I can keep my focus on helping the Yankees succeed in 2013, while minimizing any distractions for me and my teammates."
In partnering with CAA, Roc Nation joins forces with one of the top sports agencies in the world. Since launching in 2006, it has amassed an client list that spans most sports, representing Derek Jeter, Peyton Manning and Sidney Crosby. It has negotiated more than $1.1 billion in on-field contracts in baseball alone since the start of the 2011 season, including deals for San Francisco Giants pitcher Matt Cain and Baltimore Orioles outfielder Adam Jones.
"Jay Z and his team at Roc Nation have successfully orchestrated powerful brand and business-building opportunities for their clients," Michael Levine, co-head of CAA Sports, said in a satement.. "We look forward to combining our wide-reaching resources on behalf of top athlete clients like Robinson Cano to help them accomplish their goals on and off the field."
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