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Oklahoma City Thunder star Kevin Durant is the first NBA All-Star to defect to rapper and mogul Jay-Z's Roc Nation Sports agency, sources told Yahoo! Sports.
Roc Nation is a newly formed agency that has been aggressively pursuing star players in the NFL, MLB and now the NBA.
Sports Business Journal first reported Durant's move.
"KD doesn't want a traditional NBA agent anymore," a league source with knowledge of his thinking told Yahoo! Sports on Friday night. "He wants Jay-Z to handle his branding. …He had a chance to be with his idol and couldn't say no."
League executives and agents wonder whether the move to Jay-Z and Roc Nation could eventually lead to the agency pushing for Durant to depart small-market Oklahoma City for the opportunities of New York or Los Angeles.
Durant is signed with the Thunder through the 2015-16 season.
Jay-Z is divesting his small ownership interest in the Brooklyn Nets to allow him to become an agent, but a source told Yahoo! Sports that he has yet to be certified with the National Basketball Players Association.
Durant is changing representation for the second time in two years. He had most recently been with Rob Pelinka of Landmark Sports, who also represents Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant and Houston Rockets guard James Harden.
In Durant's year with Pelinka, the first-team All-NBA star became the league's most marketed player in national television spots with the likes of Nike, Degree and Sprint. Few, if any, NBA players have been as visible on television as Durant.
"We are honored and blessed to have worked on behalf of Kevin, for a brief period of time," Pelinka said in a statement. "He is an amazing person and athlete, and we are proud of our work and service toward advancing his brand in a manner that reflects the mutual qualities we share with Kevin."
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