Raptors' Nick Nurse Sued for Breach of Contract by Agent Warren LeGarie

Mike Chiari@@mikechiariFeatured Columnist IVJuly 9, 2021

Toronto Raptors head coach Nick Nurse during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Los Angeles Clippers Tuesday, May 11, 2021, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)
AP Photo/Chris O'Meara

Agent Warren LeGarie has filed a civil lawsuit against Toronto Raptors head coach Nick Nurse, seeking commission for the contract extension he signed last year.

According to Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today, the breach of contract lawsuit states the following:

"Defendant Nurse failed to do certain things required by the representation contract. Among other things, Defendant Nurse failed to abide by the terms of the representation contract, failed to pay Plaintiffs the amounts due under the representation contract, and failed to disclose to Plaintiffs the amount of the employment contract he entered into with the Toronto Raptors for the 2020-2021 through 2023-2024 NBA seasons, thus denying Plaintiffs the opportunity to be paid for commissions wed on Defendant Nurse's employment contract for the 2020-2021 through 2023-2024 NBA seasons."

Nurse, who is now represented by Andy Miller of Klutch Sports, signed a multiyear contract extension with the Raptors last year.

Shams Charania of The Athletic and Stadium reported at the time that the extension was worth $8 million per season.

The lawsuit says that Nurse's extension was for four years and worth $32 million in total.

LeGarie, who has represented several NBA head coaches, assistant coaches and executives, said he entered into an oral agreement with Nurse in 2013. At the time, Nurse was head coach of the G League's Rio Grande Valley Vipers and transitioned into becoming an assistant with the Raptors.

Per LeGarie, the agreement was that he would receive 3 percent commission on any head coaching contracts negotiated and 4 percent commission on any assistant coaching contracts negotiated.

LeGarie's attorney, Hunter Pyle, released a statement on the lawsuit, saying:

"[LeGarie] represented Nick Nurse for over seven years and successfully negotiated several contracts for him pursuant to the same agent agreement that is the subject of this lawsuit. Mr. LeGarie employed his considerable experience and relationships in the NBA to help advance the career of Mr. Nurse as he progressed from an assistant to the head coach of the Toronto Raptors. The lawsuit speaks for itself as to the facts and law on the matter. I have nothing more to say about the case at this time."

After spending five seasons as an assistant in Toronto, Nurse was promoted to head coach in 2018.

In three seasons as the Raptors' head coach, Nurse has a 138-88 record and led Toronto to the playoffs twice. That included coaching the Raptors to the first NBA championship in franchise history in 2019.

Nurse, the 2019-20 NBA Coach of the Year, missed the playoffs for the first time as an NBA head coach this season as the Raptors went just 27-45.