Category Archives: Litigation

Will Showtime Take a Blow for Streaming Issues in Highly-Anticipated Mayweather-McGregor Fight?

In August, Showtime aired the highly-anticipated fight of Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor. Customers had to pay $99.95 to live stream the event. However, some angry customers filed class actions against Showtime, NeuLion, Zuffa, Zuffa owner William Morris, and Endeavor Entertainment LLC alleging that the live streams did not live up to expectations. The cases are spread out through districts in New York, Nevada, California, and Oregon. Customers are upset because highly-anticipated live stream was disrupted because of pay-per-view issues. Specifically, customers allege that “as…

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Northwestern Bricks its Shot for Motion to Strike in Johnnie Vassar Suit

On Friday, September 29, 2017, an Illinois federal judge denied the motion Northwestern University (NU) had filed at the end of January to strike portions of a former basketball player’s complaint that mentioned settlement negotiations. “Clearly, the purpose of this allegation is not to show liability by referencing a settlement agreement but rather to allege Northwestern’s bad act in making a misrepresentation to Vassar,” the judge’s order stated.  The complaint alleged that NU offered a “cash payment” to “make Johnnie go away and free-up…

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DraftKings and FanDuel Dodge Former College Athletes’ Likeness Suit

On September 29, 2017, an Indiana federal judge threw out a proposed class action brought by college athletes against DraftKings and FanDuel for allegedly profiting off the use of their names, images, and likenesses. The judge ruled that the college athletes’ claims were barred by exemptions to Indiana’s right-of-publicity law. The case was originally brought in Indiana state court by former Northern Illinois University football players Akeem Daniels and Cameron Stingily, and former Indiana University football player Nicholas Stoner on behalf of about 3,000 former…

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WWE Might Come Out on Top in Wrestling Brain Injury Suits

Back in 2015, more than 50 former wrestlers and performers filed suit against the WEE, alleging that it hid the risk of brain trauma and failed to offer wrestlers necessary medical attention and support. The suit alleged that the former wrestlers suffer from long-term brain damage and the development of chronic traumatic encephalopathy, known as CTE, the Alzheimer’s-like neurodegenerative disease related to repeated hits to the head. The wrestler’s claimed that the WWE knew about the potential for brain injury, and was not only negligent…

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Erin Henderson Tackles the NY Jets with Wrongful Termination Suit

Erin Henderson, former New York Jets linebacker, sued the Jets on Friday, September 29, 2017, alleging the team wrongfully terminated his employment because of his bipolar disorder. He is seeking punitive damages along with $3.3 million in compensatory damages — the amount of his unpaid 2016 salary plus his non-guaranteed 2017 salary. Henderson alleges the Jets placed him on the non-football injury (NFI) list on Oct. 22 without saying why, leading other teams to shy away from signing him, thinking it was related to previous…

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Parents of Late NHL Player Derek Boogaard Request Revival of Wrongful Death Suit

On Monday, September 25, 2017, the parents of the late NHL player Derek Boogaard appealed to the Seventh Circuit, asking the court to revive their wrongful death lawsuit against the NHL. On appeal, the Boogaards claim the district court incorrectly applied Minnesota state law to the case. Derek Boogaard played in the NHL for six years and participated in 66 fights, with one of his final fights causing him a severe concussion. The Boogaards allege in their original suit that their son’s death stemmed from…

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Football Coach Immune from Brain Injury Suit, Yet Ruling May Give Hope to Future Players

Sheldon Mann, a high school football player who suffered a traumatic brain injury after a concussion during practice, will not be able to sue his coach or the school district. The Third Circuit affirmed Coach Christopher Walkowiak’s grant of immunity from a lawsuit that Mann’s parents filed in 2014. The appeals judge noted there was considerable dispute around what happened, and whether the coach knew Mann was injured when he allowed him to keep practicing. The head football coach of Palmerton Area School District claimed…

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Family of Aaron Hernandez Hits NFL and Patriots with Lawsuit After CTE Diagnosis

On September 21, 2017, Shayanna Jenkins Hernandez, as guardian of Avielle Hernandez, who is four-years-old and Aaron Hernandez’s daughter, filed a lawsuit against the NFL and the New England Patriots for their negligence that caused Aaron Hernandez to develop a severe case of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). The lawsuit seeks damages for the loss of parental consortium, alleging that the NFL’s and the Patriots’ conduct cost Hernandez’s daughter his love and affection. In a civil cover sheet for the suit the damages demanded was $20…

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Ice Cube’s Big3 Basketball League Counters Rival with Defamation Suit

On September 15, 2017, Ice Cube’s 3-on-3 professional basketball league, Big3 Basketball, filed its own lawsuit against rival league, Champions League Inc. for allegedly falsely telling investors that Big3 stole its players. Big3’s suit is in response to Champions League filing a lawsuit earlier in the month that claimed Big3 caused its failure to launch. Both companies are based on a similar business model of featuring retired NBA players. Champions League sued Big3 for $250 million in damages for breaching agreements that allowed players to…

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Reebok CCM Contests Sanction Fees from Startup Hockey-Helmet Design Company

In September of 2015, Hefter Impact Technologies LLC filed suit against Reebok-CCM Hockey alleging that Reebok contractually owed royalties on CCM helmets that were derivative of Hefter designs. Hefter is a startup hockey-helmet design company, and it asserts that it has an existing royalty agreement after CCM used Hefter’s outer shell design on a popular hockey helmet. Hefter now alleges that CCM owes it royalties on later helmet models that are also based on its outer shell design. These helmets are so popular that they…

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