This article appears in the April 19 issue of ESPN The Magazine.
Who is the most powerful person in the NBA? David Stern? No. LeBron James? No. Kobe Bryant? Nope. It's Wes Wesley. Most fans don't know who he is. Most players, agents and GMs can't figure out who he works for. (More on that in a minute.) But we all know this: Wes is the greatest connector of players, coaches, GMs, agents, celebrities and big-time sponsors in sports. Need tickets to a Jay-Z concert, a new sneaker deal or the phone number of a general manager, he's your man. There's a reason we call him Uncle Wes.
The first time I met him I was in college, and I was like, "Who is this guy?" He was advising a teammate, which made me skeptical. Then I noticed he had his name on his Jordans, which was pretty cool. I'd never seen that before on anyone who wasn't in the NBA, so I knew Wes was legit.