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Tennis Agent Tony Godsick Leaves IMG Worldwide; Could He End Up At Excel Sports?

Tony Godsick, a tennis agent at IMG Worldwide for roughly 19 years, is no longer with the company.  IMG Worldwide also lost Roger Federer (who has won a whopping won 16 Grand Slam titles in his career) as a client along with Godsick’s departure.  However, IMG Worldwide still has hope that Federer will return as a client at some point.  Over the weekend, IMG Senior VP/Corporate Communications Jim Gallagher, stated the following to me. “We confirm that Tony Godsick has left the company.  Tony is a great guy and we thank him for his 19 years of service.  We wish him continued success in the future.  Our contract with Roger Federer has expired and we no longer represent him. Roger is an icon in the world of sports.  He is a great guy, a gentleman and an incredible champion.  We are honored to have represented him and proud of the work we did for him for many years.  We hope to do business with him again in the future.”

One sports industry veteran speaking on condition of anonymity said to me, “[IMG’s] golf division has imploded and now this.  The ship is sinking my friend.”  However, I am sure that IMG Worldwide would say otherwise based on the fact that their strategy has gradually shifted away from the representation of athletes over time.

Will Godsick end up joining the team at Excel Sports Management?  The sports agency does not currently represent any tennis players, but that is no reason to believe that Excel Sports has no interest.  Prior to Mark Steinberg (formerly director of Global Golf Business with IMG Worldwide) joining Excel Sports, the company had not represented any tennis players.  Now, Excel Sports represents Tiger Woods, Tiger’s niece Cheyenne Woods, Gary Woodland, and Matt Kuchar.  Jeff Schwartz and co. at Excel Sports may be interested in trying to snatch Godsick to build a strong tennis division the same way that Steinberg has grown a valuable golf division.  And as Kaplan of SportsBusiness Journal points out, Godsick is good friends with Mark Steinberg.

By Darren Heitner

Darren Heitner created Sports Agent Blog as a New Year's Resolution on December 31, 2005. Originally titled, "I Want To Be A Sports Agent," the website was founded with the intention of causing Heitner to learn more about the profession that he wanted to join, meet reputable individuals in the space and force himself to stay on top of the latest news and trends.

Heitner now runs Heitner Legal, P.L.L.C., which is a law firm with many practice areas, including sports law and contract law. Heitner has represented numerous athletes and sports agents as legal counsel. He has also served as an Adjunct Professor at Indiana University Bloomington from 2011-2014, where he created and taught a course titled, Sport Agency Management, which included subjects ranging from NCAA regulations to athlete agent certification and the rules governing the profession. Heitner serves as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Florida Levin College of Law, where he teaches a Sports Law class that includes case law surrounding athlete agents and the NCAA rules.