NFL legend Drew Brees is now a co-owner of a professional pickleball group

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Retired NFL celebrity Drew Brees is the most recent main sports activities determine to get in on the pickleball craze.

Main League Pickleball introduced Thursday that the one-time Tremendous Bowl champion has joined the possession group of the Austin, Texas, Mad Drops Pickleball Club.

The group additionally contains enterprise capital agency Good Alpha Industries, Los Angeles Lakers co-owner Jim Buss and Ryan Serhant of Bravo’s “Million Greenback Itemizing New York.”

Monetary phrases of the deal weren’t disclosed.

“I’m an avid pickleball participant, fan and scholar of the sport,” stated Brees, who performed 20 years within the NFL, in an announcement. “I sit up for serving to elevate consciousness across the unbelievable gamers and competitions in MLP, serving to develop the game of pickleball and fostering total fan engagement.”

Brees, who retired from soccer in 2021, spent the previous season working for NBC Sports activities as an analyst earlier than they mutually parted methods. Previously, the previous New Orleans Saints quarterback has made jokes about “becoming a member of the pickleball tour,” however his most up-to-date transfer comes at a time when the game has seen explosive growth.

The pandemic gave the game a serious increase as individuals regarded for socially distant methods to be secure in a bunch exercise. At present, practically 5 million individuals play pickleball nationwide in response to USA Pickleball. The game noticed a participatory development fee of 39% over the previous two years, making it the fastest-growing sport in America in response to The Sports Fitness Industry Association.

The game has additionally attracted a lot of large identify gamers, from billionaire Melinda Gates to celebrities Ellen DeGeneres, Leonardo DiCaprio and the Kardashians.

Main League Pickleball was created by founder and CEO Steve Kuhn in 2021. The league consists of 12 groups of professional pickleball gamers that play in a co-ed format. Along with the previous Tremendous Bowl profitable quarterback, MLP additionally contains different high-profile homeowners reminiscent of entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk, Milwaukee Bucks proprietor Marc Lasry and former tennis professional James Blake.

“The proficient and passionate Mad Drops PC possession group will additional elevate our competitors and athletes, which contributes to our aim of rising the sport of pickleball into the world’s most enjoyable spectator sport,” Kuhn stated in an announcement.

Disclosure: NBC Sports activities and CNBC are each a part of NBCUniversal.

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