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The Man Behind the Scenes

July 15th, 2015 | by Martin Keane
The Man Behind the Scenes

Matik Magazine presents an exclusive  interview with Noah Croom: The former NBA Assistant General Manager of the Vancouver Grizzlies.

Written by: Martin Keane;

Aaron Goodwin is a sports agent who represents players in the National Basketball Association and the Women’s National Basketball Association. He was the initial agent of LeBron James, and negotiated endorsement deals paying James over $135 million, including a $90 million deal with NIKE. James later left Goodwin in favour of agent Leon Rose. He was initially Kevin Durant’s agent, but Durant moved to Rob Pelinka. Goodwin’s other clients have included Dwight Howard, Chris Webber, Gary Payton, Jason Kidd, Shareef Abdul-Rahim, Vin Baker, Damon Stoudamire, Todd MacCulloch, Nate Robinson and Candace Parker. In 2004, Goodwin Sports Agency was ranked 8th on Sports Illustrated list of Most Influential Minorities in Sports. Today our focus is on former NBA Assistant General Manager for the Vancouver Grizzlies and Aaron Goodwin associate Noah Croom.

MM: It’s an honor to be with you today Noah and thank you for taking the time out in your busy schedule to have a sit down interview with the Matik  Magazine. How are you doing today Noah?

NC: Good, thank you.

MM: Amongst your achievements in the basketball industry, can you share with us what is your biggest achievement that you have accomplished in your stellar career?

NC: My biggest achievement would have been being the Assistant General Manager of the Vancouver Grizzlies when basketball wasn’t the biggest market.

MM: Do you think that Vancouver will ever get a team again in the NBA?

NC: It’s unlikely due to the economic value of the Canadian dollar because as you know the NBA salaries are in USD. The Raptors for example is Canada’s team and in my opinion, the owner would have to take a look at that if that is to become a reality.

MM: Can you tell us Noah how you first started working with Aaron Goodwin and the Sports Agency? Were you guys childhood friends growing up?

NC: No, we weren’t childhood friends. When Abdul-Rahim was drafted to Vancouver, Aaron represented him and we first interacted. After Abdul-Rahim did his second contract, the Grizzlies left and I continued to stay in Vancouver. Aaron was born and raised in Oakland and was a big brother figure to Gary Payton when Gary was growing up.

MM: Were you a former player? What sparked your interest in getting you to be an Assistant General Manager of an NBA team?

 NC: No, I played in high school but I went onto work for a big firm in New York after I finished Law School. I had direct contact with a lot of the General Managers in the NBA and my interest progressed into working in the NBA.



MM: What was your most memorable moment during your tenure as Assistant General Manager for the Vancouver Grizzlies?

NC: Well, I would say they were two things. One being when we won our first road game in Portland and the other would be when we won our first home game against the Minnesota TimberWolves when they had Kevin Garnett.

MM: What can you suggest for the aspiring student athletes out there that want to have a career in Sports Management?

NC: I see two things…in being an intern in an unpaid position work and building yourself up through the ranks. Also experience, it would be much easier if you were a player but you have to like being in an environment.

MM: It’s obvious that winning is everything in the NBA, but aside from winning is there anything that is interesting worth mentioning to the basketball enthusiast and what they should know about being an Assistant General Manager in the NBA?

NC: Well, the toughest thing. I wouldn’t say toughest. But the most interesting thing in the industry, is it’s constantly changing landscape. There is never a dull moment. It’s never boring.

MM: This summer thus far has been crazy to say the least with trades, new contracts, coaching changes and with dramatic increase in salaries. What do you see in the next coming years in regards to Player Negotiations will go? Do you think we will be headed into another lockout pretty soon in the future?

NC: Well, midnight July 1st is when it started. What, it’s been 2 or 3 days. Owners will decide that is they are to lockout. They will be very unhappy with the inflated salaries. I don’t think there will be a lockout but revenue will increase.

MM: Noah, it’s been a pleasure visiting with you today to have a sit down and on behalf of the Matik Magazine. We are thankful for your time and look forward for another interview with you. If you get another chance to manage another NBA franchise or not, Matik Magazine will be rooting for you and would love to visit with you again soon.    

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