Report: Hornets rookie P.J. Hairston's agent is not certified

By James Herbert | NBA writer

More Offseason Analysis: Coaching changes, news | Free Agency | Draft

Charlotte Hornets rookie swingman P.J. Hairston's agent, Juan Morrow, is not certified by the National Basketball Players Association, according to the Sporting News' Kami Mattioli:

In fact, Robert Gadson, director of the NBPA's Security and Agent Administration Department told Sporting News on Thursday that there is “no record of a Juan Morrow in (the NBPA's) files, nor is there record of an applicant by that name.”

According to the NBA's Collective Bargaining Agreement, “(p)ersons who wish to represent NBA players in individual contract negotiations must comply with the Regulations and become certified as an NBPA Player Agent before they are eligible to participate in such negotiations.”

To become a certified agent, individuals must submit an application and are subject to a background check. The NBPA office said background checks typically take between two weeks and 30 days, and investigators are searching for red flags such as embezzlement, theft or fraud.

Once approved, annual agent fees are due no later than the first of July for the upcoming season. Gadson has no record of Morrow submitting payment for those fees.

Yeah, that's not good. And the team might be fined for it:

Article XXXVI of the CBA states: “The NBA shall impose a fine of $50,000 upon any Team that negotiates a Player Contract with an agent or representative not certified by the Players Association in accordance with the Players Association's Agent Regulation Program if, at the time of such negotiations, such Team either (a) knows that such agent or representative has not been so certified, or (b) fails to make reasonable inquiry of the NBA as to whether such agent or representative has been so certified.”

Also per the CBA, each team is supplied an updated list of certified agents every two weeks. It is the responsibility of teams to confirm agents as being in good standing with the NBPA office.

The Hornets haven't commented on this, and there's no word yet on if they've started negotiations on Hairston's rookie contract. Still, this is obviously a bad look for Hairston, and it doesn't help that the news is surfacing on the heels of an altercation with a high school player. It also follows Hairston saying that he swapped cars with Cleveland Browns receiver Josh Gordon before Gordon was pulled over and charged with DWI.

Hairston has already apologized to Charlotte fans for creating a distraction, but it seems the distractions are not over.

 
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