Tom Brady, Kim Clijsters join star-studded list of Major League Pickleball team owners

Tom Brady can’t keep away from sports — as evidenced by his short NFL retirement this previous offseason — and is discovering brand-new methods to remain included. Brady is now signing up with the pickleball fad by purchasing among the Major League Pickleball growth groups, together with four-time significant tennis champ Kim Clijsters, as part of an ownership group led by Knighthead Capital Management. 

The news comes simply a couple of weeks after the league revealed that the NBA champs trio of LeBron James, Draymond Green and Kevin Love were signing up with a currently outstanding list of MLP owners. Other widely known names associated with the league consist of Drew Brees, co-owner of the Milwaukee Bucks Marc Lasry and business owner Gary Vaynerchuk.

“Look, I’ve been trying to find a way to extend my professional sports career beyond my 40s. Even in my 50s, 60s, 70s. As long as I can, right? And I think I got the answer. Seems like everybody else has the answer too. Pickeball,” Brady stated in an Instagram video.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback has actually currently made 7 Super Bowl rings through his NFL profession that began with the New England Patriots in 2000. Vaynerchuk, who has actually stated numerous times that his life objective is to purchase the New York Jets, began teasing the principle of competitors versus Brady. 

“Welp I thought it would be on the football field but looks like we will start on Pickleball” he composed on Twitter. 

In the main news release, MLP stated the brand-new group will be 50% female-owned, which they explained was a “testament to the league’s foundational mission of gender equality.” While there are guys’s and ladies’s doubles classifications, the sport likewise has actually co-ed groups playing in blended doubles. 

Clijsters, a previous tennis world No. 1, frequently plays pickelball with Wall Street bond saleswoman Callie Simpkins and monetary consultant Kaitlyn Kerr, who are likewise part of the ownership group. 

“Of course, I’m excited at the investment opportunity,” Clijsters stated on a declaration. “But what excites me the most about becoming an MLP owner is that I get to help shape the future of pickleball, a sport I have come to love, with great people – who also happen to be some of my best friends. I’m thrilled to help showcase professional pickleball and make an impact on the sport through my experience gained in the top levels of professional tennis.”

Pickleball resembles tennis in a great deal of methods, however it is more available to professional athletes of all group as it relies less on physical capability and more on psychological ability. MLP Founder Steve Kuhn stated his objective is to reach 40 million pickleball gamers by 2030.

MLP debuted in 2021 with 8 groups and broadened to 12 groups this year. The league is including 4 more clubs for the 2023 project. 

The 2022 season is finishing up this coming weekend in Columbus, Ohio with 48 gamers completing for a reward handbag of $319,000. CBS Sports Network will relay the finals on Sunday at 7:30 p.m. ET.

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