“Physically Damaging Workouts” cited in $12M Suit Against University of Oregon and NCAA

Doug Brenner, former offensive lineman for the University of Oregon, has brought suit against the school, the NCAA, and two coaches for $11.5 million. Brenner contends that the “extreme” workouts players were forced to endure resulted in such “serious, lifelong injuries,” and that his body is “ruined.” Coach Willie Taggart and strength and conditioning Coach Irele Oderinde were recently added to the complaint, and Brenner alleges that the coaches implemented “physically impossible and unreasonably repetitious” routines for Brenner and the other football players. Brenner…
Continue reading...

NFL and Players Union Defends Drug Testing of Eric Reid

A joint statement co-authored by the National Football League and its players union defended the decision to administer a series of drug tests to the Panthers’ Eric Reid, reiterating the organization’s ban against performance-enhancing drugs and stating that Reid was not singled out in the testing process. Reid had claimed that the NFL and its team had colluded against him in an effort to dissuade him from protesting the national anthem. Reid, a former San Francisco 49er, was one of the first players to kneel…
Continue reading...

Mother of Deceased NBA Minor Leaguer Seeks to Keep Suit in Eastern Michigan

The mother of deceased minor league basketball player appeared before a Michigan federal court, arguing to keep her case in Eastern Michigan. The mother, Jewel Upshaw, is pursuing litigation against the Detroit Pistons, the NBA, the owners of the arena where the incident occurred, and a group of Pistons investors, contending that the defendants are liable for negligence and the wrongful death of her son, Zeke Upshaw. As we have previously reported, Upshaw was playing during the March 24, 2018 game, defending his player man-to-man,…
Continue reading...

NFL Withdraws Controversial Appeal Just Before Hearing

On January 9, 2019, one day before a scheduled hearing, the NFL withdrew its appeal that previously outraged attorneys representing former NFL players in concussion class-action litigation. As we have previously reported, in April 2015, the NFL entered into a settlement agreement with almost 22,000 former players. The settlement established a 65-year uncapped monetary fund for players who could prove certain neurological diagnoses. The settlement provided a $75 million “baseline assessment program” that provided eligible retired players with neurological examinations, a $10 million education…
Continue reading...

Concussion Suit Brought by Former Chiefs Player’s Ex-Wife Dismissed

A suit brought by a former Chiefs player’s ex-wife has been dismissed in Pennsylvania federal court. U.S. District Judge Anita B. Brody ruled that the plaintiff, Anita Martin,could not pursue her claims alleging that the concussions sustained by her former husband, Christopher Martin, hurt their relationship. Judge Brody explained that Ms. Martin failed to opt-out of an uncapped, multi-district settlement that the NFL had reached with roughly 5,000 players back in 2015. The settlement concluded allegations that the players sustained concussions and degenerative brain diseases…
Continue reading...

Michael Peluso Sues New Jersey Devils

On January 3, 2019, former New Jersey Devils’ enforcer, Michael Peluso, sued the New Jersey Devils and various team officials, claiming that the team concealed his risk of long-term neurological problems. According to Peluso, the Devils hid the full extent of a head injury that he suffered, on December 18, 1993, in a fight with Tony Twist, a member of the Quebec Nordiques. During the fight, Peluso allegedly suffered a concussion. According to the complaint, the Devils “intentionally, deliberately, fraudulently, and with callous disregard…
Continue reading...

Nirvana Says Stay Away, Demands All Apologies in Lawsuit Against Marc Jacobs

On December 28, 2018, Nirvana LLC brought suit against Marc Jacobs International, claiming copyright and trademark infringement. Nirvana LLC was formed back in 1997 by Dave Grohl, Krist Novoselic, and the Cobain Estate controlled by Courtney Love. Per the complaint, Nirvana argues that the Jacobs fashion brand has taken advantage of its image in misleading customers to believe Nirvana has endorsed or is otherwise associated with Jacobs’ “Bootleg Redux Grunge” collection. In particular, Jacobs has allegedly re-purposed the infamous “Smiley Face” logo created by Kurt…
Continue reading...

NFL Reaches Limited Sponsor Deal with Caesars Entertainment

On January 3, 2019, the National Football League announced its inaugural league-wide sponsorship deal with a casino company, Caesars Entertainment. While the financial terms have not yet been disclosed by Caesars or the NFL, it has been reported that the partnership will run for three years, costing $30 million per year. Previously, seven NFL clubs – the Atlanta Falcons, Baltimore Ravens, Chicago Bears, Indianapolis Colts, New Orleans Saints, Oakland Raiders, and the Philadelphia Eagles – maintained relationships with Caesars. This new deal also comes prior…
Continue reading...

Former NFL Players Face Uphill Battle in Painkillers Appeal

On December 19, 2018, a lawyer representing six former NFL players had difficulties persuading a panel of Ninth Circuit judges to revive a lawsuit claiming that the NFL illegally dispensed painkillers and pushed athletes to return to the field, ending their careers early. The lead plaintiff, Etopia Evans, widow of the late Minnesota Vikings and Baltimore Ravens player Charles “Chuck” Evans, filed her federal class action lawsuit back in May 2015. Back in 2008, Chuck Evans died a jail cell, two days after being imprisoned…
Continue reading...

MLB Strikes Deal with Cuban Baseball Federation

On December 19, 2018, MLB and the MLB Players Union (MLB PA) announced that they reached an agreement with the Cuban Baseball Federation. The agreement will allow MLB teams to sign Cuban baseball players without requiring the players to “defect” from the Cuba. Further, the MLB also agreed to give the Cuban Baseball Federation a percentage of signing bonuses that Cuban players receive. The move comes amid slowly easing tensions between the United States and Cuba and was made with the hope of ending player…
Continue reading...