Joseph M. Hanna

All articles by Joseph M. Hanna

 

Online Betting Co. Sued By Former Employee

On Monday, June 18, 2018, online horse racing platform Xpressbet LLC was sued in Pennsylvania federal court by former employee John Martinez. Xpressbet allows users to bet live horse races legally online. Martinez claims he was demoted and subsequently fired because he took medical leave. Martinez brings his complaint to recover all available damages for violations under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act (PHRA). Martinez started working at Xpressbet in 2015…  

USGA Reaches Agreement with Shinnecock Indian Nation Ahead of U.S. Open

The United States Golf Association (USGA) will host the 2018 United States Open at Shinnecock Hills Golf Club in Southampton, New York on June 14-17. This will be the fifth time the national championship is held at Shinnecock, and the first time since 2004. The second ever U.S. Open was played at Shinnecock in 1896, which marked the start of a long standing relationship between the USGA and the Shinnecock Indian Nation. Shinnecock Hills Golf Club was constructed on land once owned by the Shinnecock…  

Former Athletes Say NCAA “Hiding the Ball” and Engaging in “Trial by Ambush”

On April 4, 2018 the Sports and Entertainment Law Insider discussed an ongoing lawsuit that was brought by a class of former college athletes seeking to lift the cap on student athlete compensation under NCAA rules. The case is being tried by U.S. District Judge Claudia Wilken, who previously ruled in favor of student athletes on antitrust claims against the NCAA in O’Bannon. In March 2018, Judge Wilken denied the NCAA’s motion for summary judgment and sent the current case to trial. With trial…  

NCAA Loosens Transfer Rules

On Wednesday June 13, 2018, the NCAA changed their stringent transfer rules for their student athletes. In the past, student athletes went through a “permission to contact” process. This process limited their ability to transfer as their current college coaches were able to block the athlete from transferring to certain schools. For example, many coaches would not allow a player to transfer within their own conference. The only way to get around these bars, was for the student athlete to forego receiving financial aid at…  

Over/Under: Two Steps Forward and One Step Back for Legal Betting in New Jersey

On Tuesday, May, 25, 2018 the Sports and Entertainment Law Insider discussed the Supreme Court’s landmark decision to strike down a federal statute controlling the states’ ability to regulate sports gambling. Shortly after, New Jersey became the first state to officially make wagering legal and gain access to the estimated $150 billion market by approving Assembly Bill A-411. However, America’s professional sports leagues did not respond positively to New Jerseys’ legislation. Specifically, the leagues are worried about the potential for corruption and athletes manipulating the…  

Kawhi Leonard’s Former Agent Sues Former Employer

Brian Elfus, a veteran sports agent, represented college basketball standout Kawhi Leonard as he transitioned from San Diego State to the NBA. Elfus is now suing his former boss Mitchell Frankel and his former employer Impact Sports Basketball, Impact, JS Sports Funding LLC, and J&J Sports Agency MM LLC (defendants), for wrongful deprivation of agent fees, which included the agent fees derived from Leonard as well as other professional basketball players and coaches. According to the complaint, “Elfus generated over [$5 million] in commissions…  

Update: LeBron Seeks to Dismiss Infringement Suit

As we have previously covered, LeBron James became the target of an infringement suit in April 2018, after a barbershop owner and host of a University of Alabama talk show alleged that he copied his barbershop-themed show. James’ show, “The Shop”, and the Social Club Grooming Co.’s show, “Shop Talk”, respectively, are comparably themed, and each center on interviewing celebrity guests as they get haircuts. Though the Social Club (the d/b/a of plaintiff, Adventure Enterprises, Inc.) initiated the suit, the ball was first put…  

SCOTUS Declines Opportunity to Reconsider MLB Antitrust Exemption

Major League Baseball’s immunity from antitrust violations under the Sherman Act has been called an “anomaly.” It has also been consistently upheld by courts since 1922, when it was unanimously affirmed by the Supreme Court of the United States. The exemption was codified by Congress in the Curt Flood Act of 1998, maintaining an exemption for MLB and its clubs when conducting the “business of baseball” and providing more freedom to players seeking free agency and salary arbitration. Despite striking out with lower courts, two…  

Update: Garcia-Tatupu v. NFL Player Retirement Plan

On June 8, 2018, the Bert Bell/Pete Rozelle NFL Player Retirement Plan and the NFL Player Supplemental Disability Plan (defendants), an ERISA-governed multiemployer pension plan which provides retirement and disability benefits to eligible NFL players and their beneficiaries, asked the First Circuit not to reverse the lower court decision that the NFL’s retirement board properly denied claims made by the ex-wife of a late New England Patriots player, Mosiula F. “Mosi” Tatupu. As we have previously covered, more than four years after his 2010…  

Tennis Pro Wants Claims Bounced Back To State Court

On April 9, 2018, ten-year tennis pro Madison Brengle sued the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) and the International Tennis Federation (ITF) for physical and emotional consequences related to anti-doping blood tests. The suit was filed in a Florida Circuit Court and seeks damages for battery, negligence, and intentional infliction of emotional distress. Specifically, Brengle believes that being subjected to vein penetrating blood drawings for anti-doping tests caused her to have extreme physical and emotional pain. Brengle has a rare medical condition called complex regional pain…  

Former WWE Star CM Punk Prevails In Defamation Suit

On Tuesday, June 4, 2018, a jury in Cook County Illinois, found that former WWE wrestlers CM Punk (Phillip Jack Brooks) and Colt Cabana (Scott Colton) were not liable for the 2015 defamation and false light case brought by WWE ringside physician Dr. Christopher Amann. Amann argued that he was a victim of defamation per se, based on Punk’s and Cabana’s comments in 2014 on Cabana’s podcast “The Art of Wrestling”. After abruptly retiring from the WWE in 2013, Punk went on the podcast in…  

Former Wrestling Coach Sues Pitt Over Firing

The University of Pittsburgh was hit with a discrimination lawsuit in Pennsylvania Federal Court on Monday, June 4, 2018, by former wrestling coach Jason Peters. Peters claims that Pitt discriminated against him based on him being African-American and denied him of his fourteenth amendment due process rights during the firing process. Additionally, the complaint states that Peters was fired without just cause and that Pitt violated Pennsylvania’s Wage Payment and Collection Law by failing to pay owed wages and provide him benefits. The suit specifically…  

Pepsi Can’t Get Out of Suit Over 2016 Super Bowl Ad

In July 2016, Betty Inc, a boutique advertising agency filed a complaint for copyright infringement, breach of contract, unjust enrichment, conversion, and unfair competition against soft drink giant PepsiCo. In November of 2016, Pepsi was granted their motion to dismiss the complaint. However, this motion did not dismiss Betty Inc.’s copyright infringement claim and allowed the agency to amend their contract claim. Now, on June 5, 2018, Pepsi has lost their bid to dismiss the complaint after Judge Vincent L. Briccetti ruled that Pepsi needed…  

“Bizarre Dispute” Between Soccer Gear Company and Nike Ends at the Ninth Circuit

On June 7, 2018, Johnnie B. Rawlinson, a Ninth Circuit judge, denied Havensight Capital LLC’s appeal. In September 2014, Havensight Capital LLC, a soccer gear company and competitor of Nike, Inc., filed a lawsuit against Nike, claiming intentional interference with prospective economic relations; unfair competition and trade practices; commercial misappropriation; intentional interference with contractual relations; negligence; and invasion of privacy. According to Judge Rawlinson, the “appeal is the latest in an ongoing and bizarre dispute” where Havensight has portrayed its lawsuit as a battle between…  

Indians Pitcher Claims IP Infringement Against Louisiana Baseball Training Program

On June 4, 2018, Cleveland Indians pitcher Trevor Bauer commenced a lawsuit against a Louisiana-based baseball training program, claiming that it misappropriated his name, identity, likeness, and other interests protected under intellectual property laws. Bauer contends that the program, Top Velocity, LLC, had used his persona on its website and across its various social media accounts for its own commercial gain, leading the public to believe that Bauer and Top Velocity were associated. Bauer’s complaint asserts a total of 21 causes of action, including…  

Do NFL Players Have a First Amendment Challenge to the National Anthem Policy?

Colin Kaepernick first gained attention for his protests of the national anthem during National Football League preseason games in August 2016. Following Kaepernick’s lead, many athletes across various sports began demonstrating during the pre-game rendition of the “Star Spangled Banner.” The protests were met with widespread debate and incited responses from nearly every sports and media commentator. President Trump took to Twitter, posting a series of tweets sharing his strong feelings on the issue, calling for players who knelt to be “fired.” Kaepernick has…  

Update: Cell Phone Evidence Upheld in NCAA Corruption/Bribery Case

As we have previously reported, former Adidas consultant, Merl Code, NBA agent, Christian Dawkins, and Adidas executive, Jim Gatto, came under fire in 2017 for alleged bribery and corruption practices relating to the NCAA. Specifically, they were accused of facilitating six-figure payments to basketball players and their families in exchange for assurance that the players would go on to attend Adidas-sponsored, NCAA Division I colleges, using Dawkins as an agent. Further accusations indicate that college coaches were similarly bribed in the scheme and encouraged…  

Marlins Move Former Employee’s Wage Suit to Federal Court

In April 2018, a former marketing manager for the Miami Marlins filed a lawsuit against the team, claiming lost wages and violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act. On Friday, June 1, 2018, the Marlins filed a notice of removal, moving the case to federal court pursuant to the club’s contention that the former employee’s complaint raises substantial questions of federal law. Boris Garcia Menier started as an intern with the Marlins in 2006 and later became a marketing coordinator, supervisor and then manager…  

Vikings Owners Granted Massive Reduction in Damages in RICO Suit

On June 1, 2018, a three-judge appellate panel in New Jersey reviewed a 26-year old racketeering case against Minnesota Vikings owners, Zygmunt, Mark, Leonard Wilf, and other defendants, determining that a nearly $103 million award must be reconsidered. In its 90-page decision, the panel upheld Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) claims, as well as some non-RICO claims, including fraud and breach of fiduciary duties. In doing so, however, it decided that the total award required reexamination because it improperly included RICO and non-RICO…  

Update: MLB Player’s Libel Suit Against Al Jazeera

On May 31, 2018, Al Jazeera filed an opposition motion in the Ryan Zimmerman and Ryan Howard libel lawsuit. As we have previously reported, MLB player’s, Zimmerman and Howard, sued Al Jazeera after a 2015 documentary called “The Dark Side: The Secrets of Sports Dopers” aired. The documentary accused the Zimmerman and Howard, and other professional athletes, of using performance-enhancing drugs (PED’s). While the two sides continue to battle over discovery, Zimmerman and Howard previously filed a motion to compel. In their motion, Zimmerman…  

Jamaican Relay Team Loses 2008 Gold Medals with Dismissal of Doping Appeal

On May 31, 2018, in its Lausanne, Switzerland headquarters, the Court of Arbitration for Sport decided the appeal of doping allegations pinned against Olympic gold medalist Nesta Carter.  Carter competed in the 2008 Beijing Olympics alongside teammate Usain Bolt and others in the Jamaican relay team, winning a gold medal. Immediately following the win, the International Olympic Committee took urine samples from the competitors in order to determine whether they had been in violation of any anti-doping rule at the time of their participation. Although…  

Adidas Settles Trademark Infringement Case Against Skechers

On June 16, 2017, the Sports and Entertainment Law Insider discussed an appeal made by Sketchers to lift a preliminary injunction granted in favor Adidas, which had alleged that the Skechers Onix sneaker was violating the trademark of the iconic Adidas Stan Smith tennis shoe. The injunction was later affirmed by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. While affirming the injunction and continuing to prevent Skechers from manufacturing or selling the Skechers Onix, the appeals court noted its belief that Adidas would likely succeed at…  

Under Armour Seeks Arbitration in Data Breach Case

On May 21, 2018, the Sports and Entertainment Law Insider reported a putative class action suit filed against Under Armour, relating to a March 2018 data breach of the company’s MyFitnessPal app. On June 28, 2018, Under Armour filed a motion to compel arbitration, along with a motion to dismiss or stay litigation. In the filing, Under Armour alleges that the named plaintiff, Rebecca Murray, expressly agreed to “a conspicuous arbitration provision” when she registered and used the MyFitnessPal app. The Terms and Conditions of…  

College Football Right of Publicity Lawsuit: Player Unions Support College Athletes in Fantasy Sports Suit

On January 25, 2018 the Sports and Entertainment Law Insider discussed a lawsuit filed by former NCAA football players, Akeem Daniels, Cameron Stingily, and Nicholas Stoner, who alleged that daily fantasy sports (DFS) providers had violated an Indiana state right-of-publicity statute when the DFS companies used names, images, likenesses, and statistics of student-athletes in online fantasy sports contests. In September 2017, the case was dismissed by the United States District Court based on a finding that the use of the names, images, and likenesses were…  

UPDATE: Dismissal of Late NHL Player’s Wrongful Death Suit Affirmed by 7th Circuit

Since May of 2013, the Sports and Entertainment Law Insider has been tracking a wrongful death suit filed on behalf of the late NHL player, Derek Boogaard. The suit may have reached the end of its long road with the Seventh Circuit affirming the dismissal of the case. In the midst of ongoing litigation against the NHL for their conduct relating to the risks of head injuries, the result in the Boogaard case is temporary victory for the league which is seeking to avoid the…  

Update: Arguments Heard on Special Investigator in NFL Concussion Settlement

As we have previously reported, the NFL continues to sort through the claimants involved in its billion dollar concussion settlement. The claimants are former NFL players and families of deceased players seeking to recover against the NFL for concussive injuries resulting from their time spent playing for the league. On May 30, 2018, counsel for the NFL, Richard Tarlowe, asked a Pennsylvania federal judge during arguments to bolster the investigation of legitimate claims by supplementing the process with an additional investigator. Recent audits completed…  

Mother Sues the NBA, Pistons, and Others after Her Son Died During a Game

In the final minute of a game on March 24, 2018, Zeke Upshaw was playing for the Detroit Pistons’ minor-league affiliate, the Grand Rapids Drive, when he suddenly collapsed on the court and later died. An autopsy of the then 26-year-old basketball player revealed that Upshaw suffered a “Sudden Cardiac Death” (SCD). Now Upshaw’s mother is suing on her sons behalf. According to a statement from the lawyers representing Upshaw’s mother, “Upshaw crumpled face-down on the court in full cardiac arrest. Despite this undeniable dire…  

Arkansas Tech Sues NCAA Over Vacated Wins

The NCAA imposed sanctions on the Arkansas Tech athletic program for violations revolving around the school’s failure to monitor its housing operations from 2009 to 2013. Tech waived or paid $14,250 in housing security deposits for 57 prospects during this time period and also reserved on-campus apartments and dorms for student-athletes, which is a NCAA violation. Arkansas Tech believes the sanctions imposed by the NCAA are excessive and that the organization abused its discretion in the disciplinary process. Arkansas Tech contends the NCAA has failed…  

UPDATE: Former Professional Golfer Sued

On January 24, 2018, drink and dietary supplement company, Organo Gold International Inc., sued 62-year-old former professional golfer Greg Norman, Aussie Rules Marine Services, Ltd., and ABG-Shark, LLC, in Washington federal court. Norman controls Aussie, a foreign company organized under the laws of the Cayman Islands. Also, Norman has an existing partnership with ABG. Back in March of 2017, Norman partnered with, and gave, ABG the right to control “the direction of the consumer products division of The Greg Norman Company.” In their…  

Chicago Cubs Have to Produce Original Emails in Former Scout’s Lawsuits

On October 18, 2017, a former professional baseball scout with the Chicago Cubs Baseball Club, Dennis Henderson, sued the Cubs for violating the California Labor Code, California Family Rights Act, and for discriminating against him on the basis of his age and disability. Henderson is over 40-years-old and had hip surgery while employed with the Cubs. While Henderson worked for the Cubs, he was responsible for scouting three professional baseball organizations; however, according to the Cubs summary judgment motion, scouts who were performing well…  

Former Division I Athletes Seek Reduction of “Grossly Excessive” Fees Awarded to NCAA in Antitrust Suit

As we have previously reported, former Division I football and basketball athlete plaintiffs won a settlement of $208.7 million from the NCAA for the NCAA’s antitrust practices capping student scholarships at values less than the actual cost of attendance. In a recent brief, class member Darrin Duncan articulates that the “central issue in the case is that [the NCAA] violated the antitrust laws by agreeing to and enforcing restrictive NCAA bylaws that cap the amount of athletically related financial aid and other benefits”. Since…  

Former Houston Texans Cheerleader Files Class-Action Wage Suit

A former cheerleader for the Houston Texans has filed a putative class action suit against the Texans and the team’s cheerleading coach, Altovise Gary, claiming unpaid wages, wrongful termination, and other labor violations including a failure to remedy reports of physical abuse by fans. The named plaintiff, identified as P.G.G., has sued under the Fair Labor Standards Act and Texas Labor Code, seeking remuneration for hours spent working “off-the-clock” and unpaid overtime. P.G.G. worked as a Texans cheerleader from April 2017 to April 2018. In…  

Referee Recommends Probation for Attorneys Who Gave Judge Baseball Tickets

In March 2016, the Sports and Entertainment Law Insider wrote about a Florida judge who resigned after coming under fire for accepting tickets to a Tampa Bay Rays baseball game from a law firm contemporaneously arguing a case in front of him. On Tuesday, May 22, 2018, the attorneys who provided the tickets to the judge were subjected to probation and admonishment penalties by a referee in the Supreme Court of Florida. The Florida Bar Association will now review the report and recommendations to determine…  

College Student/Start-Up Business Owner Sues New Era Cap Co. for Trademark Infringement

On May 22, 2018, God’s Era, a small start-up casual apparel company in Massachusetts, filed a trademark infringement lawsuit against New Era Cap Co. According to the complaint, New Era Cap Co. willfully engaged in trademark infringement, unfairly competed, injured God’s Era business reputation, and New Era Cap Co. used false and deceptive business practices. God’s Era is a small apparel company that was “wholly self-funded by its owner, Averil Hilton, who is currently a full-time college student and working full-time at another job…  

ESPN and Chick-Fil-A Move to Dismiss Copyright Infringement Lawsuit

On May 22, 2018, ESPN and Chick-Fil-A filed a brief in support of their motion to dismiss Platinum Jack Entertainment, LLC’s copyright infringement lawsuit. As we have previously covered, Platinum Jack filed a lawsuit against ESPN and Chick-Fil-A because of their allegedly impermissible use of the song entitled “Best I Had” by Drayter, from whom Platinum Jack purchased “all rights and publishing.” Now ESPN and Chick-Fil-A have moved to dismiss the lawsuit, claiming that “the complaint is a four-page pleading riddled with errors, conclusory…  

Injured Field Hockey Player Blocked From Suing School

A former high school field hockey player who sued her school district after suffering a head injury at a practice in 2012 had her case dismissed by a Massachusetts appeals court on Friday, May 18, 2018. The appeals court in Middlesex County, Massachusetts affirmed an order of dismissal made by the trial court pursuant to a sovereign immunity clause in the state’s Tort Claims Act. After being struck with a field hockey stick by a teammate, Alexandra Stahr suffered a concussion and the loss of…  

Former NFL Player Sues NFLPA for ERISA Violation

On May 22, 2018, Christopher Hudson, a former Jacksonville Jaguar, Chicago Bear, and Atlanta Falcon safety, filed a class-action lawsuit against the NFL Management Council, the National Football League Players Association, and the retirement board (defendants), alleging that a class of players suffering from various injuries were denied crucial information on how to request disability benefits under their retirement plan. Hudson’s lawsuit seeks recovery, under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA), for a class of players who were beneficiaries of the Bert…  

UPDATE: Former USC Coach Losses Defamation Suit Against the NCAA

On May 21, 2018, a jury returned a verdict of 9-3, found that the NCAA did not defame former University of Southern California assistant football coach Todd McNair in its 2010 and 2011 statements. As we have previously reported, McNair accused the NCAA’s Infractions Committee of ending his coaching career in June 2010 when it found him guilty of unethical conduct in connection with the impermissible-benefits scandal involving the Reggie Bush scandal. The Reggie Bush scandal, also known as the Bush/O.J. Mayo scandal, arose…  

NFL Issues Statement on Regulation of Sports Gambling

On Monday, May 14, 2018, the Supreme Court struck down a federal law that prohibited states from authorizing gambling on sports. The ruling opened the door for states to legalize and regulate the gambling industry within their borders. However, the ruling also leaves open the possibility that Congress will act to set national standards in the regulation of sports gambling. Indeed, shortly after the ruling was handed down, Sen. Orrin Hatch (Utah) said that he will introduce legislation to regulate sports gambling on a federal…  

Putative Class Action against NCAA and Universities Dismissed for Untimeliness

On May 17, 2018, a federal judge dismissed a putative class’ wage suit against the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and several universities for failing to file within the two-year period required under the statute of limitations.  Lawrence “Poppy” Livers, a former Villanova University football player, brought a claim in September 2017, asserting that the NCAA, Villanova, and other universities were violating the minimum wage provision of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).  Specifically, Livers contended that he and other college athletes with scholarships should…  

NFL Issues New Anthem Rules

On May 23, 2018, all 32 NFL team owners voted to approve a policy statement that would require players to stand during, and show respect for, the national anthem. However, if a player did not want to stand for the national anthem, then he must remain in the locker room. If a player decides to protest the national anthem by kneeling, or disrespecting the anthem or the flag in any way, then the team, not the player, will be fined. According to NFL Commissioner Roger…  

Update: Foul Ball Leads to Lawsuit Against College and NCAA

On February 14, 2018, former Division II college baseball player Joseph Gutowski filed suit against West Chester University of Pennsylvania and the NCAA after injuries he sustained during a game in 2016. In his complaint, Gutowski alleges that a foul ball hit him directly in the head during a home game in April 2016, while he was seated on the players’ bench in the dugout. Claiming permanent injuries, he is now seeking damages for breach of contract, negligence, unjust enrichment, and negligent infliction of…  

NCAA’s Response to Legal Gambling: Rule Changes and Support for Federal Regulation

In response to the May 14, 2018 Supreme Court ruling which opened the door for states to legalize sports gambling, the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) released a statement outlining its reaction to the decision. The statement is headlined with support for federal regulation of the sports gambling industry as a “necessary safeguard to the integrity of college sports.” In addition, the NCAA Board of Governors has temporarily suspended its rule prohibiting championship events from being held in states that offer legal sports betting in…  

Misrepresentation of Baseball Bat Weight Sparks Class Action Suit

Easton Baseball / Softball, Inc. is a top manufacturer of baseball and softball products, has been subjected to a class action suit filed in United States District Court for the Central District of California. After discovering that the baseball bat he purchased for his son was heavier than advertised, plaintiff Ricky Wisdom is seeking to stop the sale of incorrectly weighted bats and recover damages for consumers paying a premium for Easton’s products. Easton has acquired a strong reputation in the sporting goods industry for…  

Under Armour Sued in Latest Data Breach Case

In April 2018, Rebecca Murray filed a putative class action suit against Under Armour relating to the March 2018 data breach of Under Armour’s MyFitnessPal nutrition and fitness app. On Tuesday, May 15, 2018 Under Armour filed a notice of removal transferring the case to federal court in the Central District of California Murray v. Under Armour, 2:18-CV-04032. The case arises from a data breach which Under Armour announced in late March 2018. Under Armour said that the breach affected an estimated $150…  

New York Giants and Quarterback Eli Manning Settle Memorabilia Fraud Lawsuit

New Jersey sports memorabilia dealer, Eric Inselberg, had established himself as a committed collector of New York Giants football mementos. He acquired countless items and donated more than $1 million worth of collectables to the team museum. However, his relationship with the team soured in the years leading up to a 2014 lawsuit between himself, the Giants, and Eli Manning. Days before the case was set to hit trial, an agreement was reached to settle the dispute arising out of the sale of Eli Manning…  

Michigan State Agrees to Pay $500 Million to Larry Nassar Victims

On, May 16, 2018, news broke of a monumental settlement that will require Michigan State University to pay $500 million to victims of Larry Nassar’s sexual assault. $425 million will be distributed to the 332 claimants seeking damages from the University for its failure to act on persistent complaints about the doctor. The remaining $75 million will be set aside for two years in the event that more victims of Nassar’s abuse come forward. The settlement is believed to be the largest ever in a…  

Retired NHL Veteran Alleging Former Teams Knew of Brain Injuries

After making his NHL debut in 1989, Mike Peluso played nine professional seasons as a bruising left winger for five different NHL franchises. He won the Stanley Cup in 1995 as an enforcer on the New Jersey Devils’ “Crash Line”. After his retirement in 1998, the long-term effects of his role as an enforcer and the resulting brain injuries formed the basis of a workers’ compensation suit against his former teams. The most recent allegations, however, have implications outside of workers’ compensation context…  

Supreme Court Bets on Federalism in Sports Gambling Ruling

On Monday, May 14, 2018, the Supreme Court of the United States struck down a federal statute controlling the states’ ability to regulate sports gambling, destroying Nevada’s monopoly and opening the door for other states to get in on the multi-billion dollar industry. In its majority opinion, the court voted to strike down the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 (PASPA). Although PAPSA did not make sports gambling itself a federal crime, the Act made it unlawful for states to promote, license,…  

Medical Marijuana Puts an NFL Player’s Career in Limbo

In 2013 NFL running back Mike James was playing for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Monday Night Football. During the opening drive of the game, James broke his ankle after an opposing player fell on his foot, causing his ankle to be twisted awkwardly. James was rolling on the ground in excoriating pain and was later carted off the field with a left ankle injury. Surgery, a metal rod, and medal wires were needed to repair his ankle, and after the surgery, James was…