Paul Lawrence, a veteran agent with Maximum Sports Management, has passed.

Liz Mullen of Sports Business Journal, reported that Lawrence, an Everett, Wa., resident, died suddenly today. Lawrence was stricken while he was playing basketball, something he did often.

Lawrence worked for Maximum Sports for the last 10 years. He was well respected and as one contract negotiator for an NFL team said, “Paul would do anything for his players, and he would give you the shirt off his back.”

Lawrence was just in New Orleans this past weekend for the wedding of Saints cornerback Tracy Porter, one of his clients. In a business that can have its ups and downs, Lawrence always seemed to be up. He had a positive personality and that served him well. He was also always willing to help those who had questions.

"We are devastated by today's news, and our hearts go out to Paul's family," said Maximum Sports partner Eugene Parker in a statement. "Paul was an important part of the Maximum family, and all of us will miss him dearly. His ability to work with our athletes and the relationships he built over the last decade has had a direct result in the success of our company. We will miss Paul's vision and his daily enthusiastic approach in an industry where has had such a positive effect."

Not surprisingly, there has been an outpouring of reaction to his death, even from competitors.

"In my business there are so many bad people," Priority Sports agent Deryk Gilmore wrote on his Facebook page. "Rarely is there someone who is unselfish and that I can call a friend. I lost one today. Paul Lawrence passed today. Age 44. Leaves behind a family. I spoke with him today at 1 p.m. I'm sad and angry but I know God has him in heaven."

The National Football Post sends condolences to the family and friends of Paul Lawrence.