I spent some time with agent Bill Duffy to speak about one of his new endeavors, MakeitPro.com. We also got his thoughts on the expectations he has this season for two of his clients, Anthony Randolph & Andris Biedrins.
Let our readers know about Makeitpro.com and what it fully entails.
It’s a progressive website which is fully immersed in sports along with a social component. We also wanted to be a site which was informative for athletes and parents as well as entertaining for fans. It’s a space that really hasn’t been attended to real comprehensibly. For instance, if a young inspiring athlete wants to create exposure for themselves and be recognized for their achievements this platform allows them to have diverse avenues to do so.
The plight of Steve Nash who came from Victoria British Columbia and was a great young talent but didn’t get the exposure he wanted as he only had one scholarship offer. If someone like Steve when he was 14 or 15 years old could have put his tapes and achievements in a chronological fashion for coaches and others to see it would have generated more interest in him.
There’s a global component to the site which allows a soccer player from Brazil or a baseball player in Japan to join the site and allow their work to be seen. There will also be information available about injuries, sports psychology, diet, nutrition and we hope it’s a machine that allows people to get all the information they want. There’s a premium services component which will allow members to get in depth personal training and guidance as well as a commerce component where you can purchase products from our sponsors.
How important was it to include sports not deemed mainstream and to not forget about the sports which are often overlooked or put on the backburner?
Sports play a huge role in people’s lives and the popularity of Sports is something we’re targeting. We’re focused on not only mainstream sports but also sports which are off the traditional mainstream path. It’s important that we address paintball, lacrosse, surfing and all kinds of other sports where we can provide help and exposure for those athletes as well.
We wanted to make sure everyone had the ability to share their skills regardless of the type of sports they choose or enjoy to participate in. Everyone is different and enjoys or excels in different sports so to be able to cover all sports was essential.
Social networking is quite popular nowadays which has created a large amount of sites offering new ways to communicate. What makes MakeitPro.com different than other sites?
With the emergence of MySpace, Facebook, Twitter and other new media outlets we wanted to make sure we addressed the population through sports. Sports are one of the commonalities across the globe where there are fans and athletes participating in their favorite pastime every day.
Another important aspect of this project is the safety of it as Sports are healthy and wholesome and the common worries and threats that parents face with social networking sites aren’t prevalent with this project. We want parents to know that this site is a great tool for their children and most of all it’s in a safe environment.
You can basically create a chronology from the age of 5 playing t-ball all the way up to your collegiate career. Parents can upload and share their child’s games, skills and achievements so not only coaches or trainers can view them but also relatives and family members who may be living elsewhere which limits their ability to normally see their family members play. Having the ability to share their content at one central location for so many viewers is another key aspect of our site.
One of the most overlooked aspects of youth sports is the fitness and nutrition side of it. How essential was it to bring in experts, trainers and other professionals to the site to serve as educators to the members?
That is a very good question and that might be one of the most important aspects as many young kids don’t know how to prepare, eat and get themselves in the right condition to perform to the best of their abilities. To address the needs at every level is a very intriguing aspect of the city and incorporating general health & fitness is essential. We feel very positive about being able to improve their quality of life away from the playing field.
Which athletes can members expect to interact with and see on the site?
Steve Nash, Gretchen Bleiler, Ryan Sweeney and many more athletes who are on board. As we continue to move forward we’ll have athletes representing every sport on our site to maximize our ability to engage and interact with our members.
What can Warrior fans expect from Anthony Randolph this season?
I think this will be his coming out party as he had a great summer as evidenced by his performance in summer league and team USA camp. He continues to work hard and I expect him to be an impact player this year as the strides he’s made on and off the court have been phenomenal.
Anthony’s a really good kid with a great supporting cast around him in life which keeps him grounded and it’s a pleasure to work with him.
How glad were you to have Randolph join your agency after initially choosing a competing agency?
I’m glad he came back because I was fond of him from our first meeting. It’s a blessing to be able to work with him and watch him more so than my other clients’ as he plays right in my backyard in Golden State.
What can Warrior fans expect from Andris Biedrins this season?
Andris also had a productive summer as he spent time playing with his National team as he has been for the past few years. I was telling him that he should pursue the All-star game as Yao Ming is out for the season and Shaquille O’Neal is no longer in the Western conference so there is a great opportunity for Andris to showcase his abilities.
Biedrins is one of the more underrated players as a lot of what he does doesn’t show up in the box score.
He does a lot of the dirty work which isn’t really recognized or appreciated. He’s a great rebounder, shot blocker, shoots a high percentage and continues to improve his free throw percentage. Anthony Randolph is going to help him out on the boards as the past few years he hasn’t had much help in that regard.
Thoughts on the Warriors?
Like all teams, they want to win. There has been some transition as of late but they have a pretty solid core group of players who enjoy playing in this market and appreciate the great fan support. They need to catch a break because they play an exciting brand of basketball but are a few pieces away from being a contending team.