Access Denied: NCAA Bribery and Corruption Scandal

On September 3, 2019, U.S. District Court Judge Lewis A. Kaplan issued a ruling denying the motions by the NCAA and Yahoo Sports parent company, Oath, Inc., to intervene in the pay-for-play NCAA scandal case for the limited purpose of obtaining access to evidence that was not admitted at trial. As we have previously reported, in October 2018, former Adidas executive James Gatto, business manager Christopher Dawkins, and consultant Merl Code were convicted of fraud that arose out of a college basketball pay-for-play scandal.…

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Barclays Center and Brooklyn Nets Have New Owner

On August 16, 2019, it was announced that Russian billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov agreed to sell the Barclays Center and his controlling stake in the Brooklyn Nets to Joe Tsai, co-founder and Executive Vice Chairman of the Alibaba Group. The deal was reportedly worth $3.5 billion.

It was long anticipated that Tsai, one of the world’s 150 richest people, would purchase the Nets as he already owned 49 percent of the franchise. The change in ownership continues what has been an already transformational summer for the Nets. The …

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The “Greek Freak” Freaks over Trademark Infringement

Giannis Antetokounmpo, a member of the NBA’s Milwaukee Bucks, recently filed a lawsuit against Viral Style LLC, a clothing company. According to Antetokounmpo, Viral used the trademarks “Greek Freak” and “Greek Fr34K” without Antetokounmpo’s permission. Antetokounmpo earned the nickname “Greek Freak” and later trademarked the name and an accompanying image related to his nationality, skill, and household notoriety.

The nearly seven-foot-tall Bucks star claims Viral infringed on and counterfeited his trademarks by “designing, selling and distributing various products, including tees, hoodies and T-shirts, under the …

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Detroit Pistons and NBA Settle Lawsuit Over Player’s Death

The National Basketball Association (NBA) and the Detroit Pistons organization have agreed to an undisclosed settlement with Gene Upshaw, the mother of Zeke Upshaw, after her son suffered a heart attack on the court during a G-League basketball game with the Pistons’ affiliate, the Grand Rapids Drive. He died days later at a local hospital. Upshaw subsequently filed a lawsuit on behalf of her son against the Detroit Pistons organization, the NBA, DeltaPlex Arena, and the co-owner of the Drive, SSJ Group LLC.

The lawsuit …

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“NBA Last 90” Foreshadows the Potentially Lucrative Intersection of eSports and Sports Betting

The National Basketball Association (NBA) has, in many ways, led the way in navigating both the legal logistics of legalized sports betting and the growing industry of eSports, a recently popular form of competition using video games. The recent release of the first-ever NBA virtual sports betting game, NBA Last 90, conceivably foreshadows the future of how two of the most potentially lucrative sports-related industries could intertwine in a meaningful and profitable manner.

Since the 2018 Supreme Court decision of Murphy v. National Collegiate Athletic

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The Collective Bargaining Agreement: The Financial and Logistical Guide to the Modern NBA

National Basketball Association (NBA) fans have been glued to their phones lately wondering which players will sign where. The start of the NBA free agency period has become somewhat of a sports holiday when players announce their new (or same) destinations. Teams often resort to buying billboards, hiring celebrities, and even offering players free food for life to convince these free agents to sign with them. The contract and monetary amounts for players can be staggering. Players are accumulating generational wealth and are constantly …

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Zion Williamson’s Legal Battle with His Former Marketing Agency

Zion Williamson is surrounded by more hype than any other basketball prospect in recent memory. He has limitless potential and franchise-altering talent. With all the hype and excitement has also come some legal issues. On April 20, 2019, less than a week after Williamson declared for the 2019 NBA Draft, he signed a marketing deal with Prime Sports Marketing, LLC. Williamson’s contract with Prime Sports had a clause that the contract could not be terminated for five years.

However, only 40 days after signing the …

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NCAA Referee Appeals Dismissal of Death Threats Lawsuit

NCAA referee John Higgins asked the Sixth Circuit to accept his case against a Kentucky radio station, as well as two of its hosts, in a brief filed on Monday. Higgins alleges that the hosts deliberately incited fans to attack his roofing business and send him death threats following a March 26, 2017 NCAA tournament game between the University of Kentucky Wildcats and the University of North Carolina Tar Heels in which the Wildcats lost, 75-73, ending their season. According to the lawsuit, …

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The Impending Durant-Warriors Lawsuit That No One Is Talking About

The grumblings are growing louder that Kevin Durant will leave the Golden State Warriors with a parting gift: a bombshell lawsuit that would send shockwaves throughout the legal and sports communities.

Last week, I wrote a long-form article as to how, and under what theory, Durant could sue the Warriors based on his torn Achilles, diving into his finances and those of comparable athletes to suggest that the lawsuit could be over $1 billion. It was purely an academic exercise at that point.

Yet, since …

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The Perils of Assuming an Unknown Risk: The Anatomy of a $1 Billion Dollar Durant-Warriors Lawsuit

Willis Reed starred in the original and Kevin Durant was poised to headline the remake. Each were legends as a result, but the first was a feel-good story, while the second was a tragedy and one that may lead us to the highest value personal injury lawsuit we’ve ever seen.


Let’s jump back in the time machine. It’s game seven of the 1970 NBA Finals between the New York Knicks and the Los Angeles Lakers. The Knicks are coming off a loss in …

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