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Bezos-Backed Overtime Adds Lawyer in Sports Shake Up Bid (1)

Aug. 5, 2021, 10:01 AM; Updated: Aug. 5, 2021, 3:22 PM

Overtime Sports Inc., a media company that’s lined up prominent financial supporters in its effort to send a jolt through U.S. college sports, has hired its first-ever in-house lawyer in Andrew Eiger.

Eiger joined Brooklyn, N.Y.-based Overtime on June 1 as vice president of legal and business affairs. He spent the past year-and-a-half as vice president of legal for Roc Nation LLC, a New York-based entertainment company and talent agency founded by hip hop mogul Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter.

Overtime’s hire of Eiger, which has not yet been publicly disclosed, comes as young athletes grapple with new name, image, and likeness (NIL) rules adopted in July by the National Collegiate Athletic Association after the governing body for U.S. college sports suffered an antitrust setback at the U.S. Supreme Court.

Overtime is looking closely at those changes, as well as opportunities in the evolving sports betting space, Eiger told Bloomberg Law.

Eiger joined Overtime just prior to the decision and after the company closed in April on an $80 million Series C fundraising round led by Bezos Expeditions—the personal investment firm of Amazon.com Inc. co-founder Jeff Bezos—and rapper and entrepreneur Aubrey Drake Graham.

Other backers included Reddit Inc. co-founder Alexis Ohanian, basketball stars Devin Booker, Kevin Durant, Klay Thompson, and Trae Young, and Micromanagement Ventures, a venture capital firm started by former National Basketball Association commissioner David Stern, a former Proskauer Rose partner who died last year.

“There’s been a lot of exciting news here in recent months, and this is definitely a general counsel-type role,” said Eiger, who started his legal career in 2013 as an associate at Proskauer, a law firm known for its high-profile sports practice.

Overtime, as reported by the New York Times, is currently planning to launch a new professional basketball league called Overtime Elite that will pay $100,000 salaries to top high school players as a means of enticing them to skip college.

While Overtime Elite announced its plans prior to the NCAA’s recent NIL changes, Eiger said the company is examining those rules as it targets 16- to 18-year-old players. Overtime Elite is building a facility in Atlanta to house those players, which include Jalen Lewis, the No. 2-ranked player in his high school class, Eiger said.

Overtime Elite is being advised by Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo. New York-based entertainment law firm Grubman Shire Meiselas & Sacks is representing the parent company. Timothy Nevius, a former NCAA investigator who went on to work at Winston & Strawn and now has his own legal practice, also advises Overtime.

Shifting Sports Gears

Eiger is currently Overtime’s sole in-house lawyer, although he’ll get some reinforcements later this month when the company adds Mauro Lilling Naparty associate Jerika Morris in Woodbury, N.Y., as legal counsel.

Overtime, co-founded in 2016 by current CEO Daniel Porter, the first president of Teach for America and a former head of digital at William Morris Endeavor Entertainment LLC, has its headquarters in Brooklyn’s Dumbo neighborhood. Eiger, who is now working remotely, reports to chief strategy and financial officer Farzeen Ghorashy. Zachary Weiner, Overtime’s other co-founder, is also a WME alum.

The company’s “sweet spot” is long-form content, not of the hours-long documentary variety, but 15- to 30-minute episodes that go behind the scenes for emerging athletes, Eiger said. Overtime first made its name by publishing clips of then relatively unknown prep school standouts like Zion Williamson, now an NBA star.

At Proskauer, Eiger did capital markets and finance work for nearly five years before jumping into the sports space in 2018. He became one of two in-house counsel at Relevant Sports Group, a sports media company and promoter of soccer events owned by real estate billionaire Stephen Ross.

Roc Nation, executive producer of the Super Bowl’s half-time show, hired Eiger in January 2020. He predominantly advised on corporate branding, live events, and transactions in his music and business affairs role, although Eiger said he also handled talent agreements for some U.K. athletes.

Eiger acknowledged twin brothers Brett and Michael Yormark, sports world veterans who became co-CEOs in 2019 of Roc Nation Unified, which supports the company’s various affiliates. “They were great to work for and are definitely well-regarded in the industry,” said Eiger, who also praised Roc Nation’s CEO Desiree Perez.

Roc Nation Reshuffling

At Roc Nation, Eiger was one of four in-house lawyers.

He worked closely with senior vice president of business and legal affairs Megan Joyce, a veteran music industry lawyer hired by Roc Nation in early 2020. Provident Entertainment, a Christian music subsidiary of Sony Music Entertainment, announced in January its hire of Joyce as vice president of business and legal affairs.

Kimberly Miale, an agent for National Football League players, also serves as general counsel for Roc Nation Sports LLC. Miale was assisted by associate general counsel and football coordinator Shauna DiGiovanni, who left Roc Nation Sports in April to join WME as a sports business affairs executive.

Roc Nation Sports hired a replacement for DiGiovanni in Kapeil Misir, who started July 8 as an associate general counsel at the company. Misir, who confirmed his new role at Roc Nation Sports, spent the past six months working for the New Jersey Attorney General’s Office. Prior to that Misir was a senior associate at Jeff Fannell & Associates, a Bordentown, N.J.-based firm known for its sports law work.

Brittany Witter, a Roc Nation spokeswoman, declined to comment on whether Eiger has been replaced at Roc Nation. The company also recently saw its chief of staff, Marilee Holmes, a former general counsel at modeling agency Wilhelmina International Inc., depart to become senior director of diversity, inclusion, and belonging for the Save the Children Federation Inc.

Jordyn Linsk Machotka, a spokeswoman for the nonprofit, confirmed that Holmes joined the organization June 21 to replace an employee who left last year.

(Adds detail on Overtime's other co-founder in 12th paragraph.)

To contact the reporter on this story: Brian Baxter in New York at bbaxter@bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Chris Opfer at copfer@bloomberglaw.com;
John Hughes in Washington at jhughes@bloombergindustry.com

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