Frugal Lessons from Ballers, Season 3 Episode 3

Ballers is a HBO series show about a former football player turned financial manager (a character named Spencer, played by The Rock) that highlights the life of current and former players in regards to sports and finances and how they balance it all together.  Ballers goes in depth on a number of topics involving the lifestyle of professional athletes from players transitioning post career to handling family and friends to dealing with negotiations.

The following highlights different key financial points from the show that athletes deal with or can learn from.

Life Off the Field

This last episode was a little quiet in terms of financial gems to take, but one particular scene that stood out was when Spencer was speaking with Candace Brewer, a reporter, who Spencer was previously at odds with and looks to be a hurdle in Spencer's ambition to get an NFL team in Vegas.

Candice Brewer asks Spencer how he was able to do it,  to be “one of the few players to build a successful career post career that’s on the level, if not better, than their professional career.” 

That scene was very eye opening…If you think about it, the transition to life off the field is a scenario every athlete has to deal with. It is scary when you really think about it. You go all your life training to get to that point, then you get to that point and you fight to play as long as you can. And then all of a sudden, boom, it's gone. Whether it happens planned or abruptly, every athlete will retire from their careers and have to continue living their life.

For some athletes the transition is much harder because of many aspects. Change of pace, out of the limelight, lack of discipline, time management, no preparation, etc. In fact, many reports show that in the NFL particularly,  upwards of 40% professional football players end up bankrupt within 3 years of retiring.

For the athlete, it is important to find your passions off the field and use your network to help   your post career opportunities. You are at an advantage where you are making enormous capital at a young age. You more than likely don't have a debt or student loans. You are in contact with many high net worth individuals. For these reasons alone, there should really be no excuse for a professional athlete to falter all their earnings unless they are unprepared or not disciplined.  It's important athletes take care of themselves for the long term because your career is a small window in comparison to your whole life.