The NFL Hall of Fame recently sued a contractor and two subcontractors blaming them for poor filed conditions that led to the cancellation of the 2016 Hall of Fame Game. Each year, the NFL Hall of Fame Game holds an exhibition game on the same weekend that the NFL Football Hall of Fame inducts new members. This year, the Baltimore Ravens and Chicago Bears will face off on August 2, 2018, but in 2016, the game between the Green Bay Packers and Indianapolis Colts was cancelled due to poor field conditions. At some point before the 2016 game, it was determined that a combination of the turf and the paint used on it created an unsafe playing surface. In a statement, the NFL said, “[d]ue to safety concerns with the condition of the playing surface in Canton, tonight’s game … has been cancelled. We are very disappointed for our fans, but player safety is our primary concern.”
As we have previously reported, after the game was canceled, a class action lawsuit was initiated, in Ohio State court, by ticketholders against the NFL and the NFL Hall of Fame. The ticketholders claimed that the NFL and the NFL Hall of Fame breached a contract and the ticketholders requested reimbursement for travel, lodging, tickets, concessions, and other expenses totaling $5 million.
Now the NFL Hall of Fame has sued a contractor and two subcontractors seeking more than $25,000 in damages. In the lawsuit, the NFL Hall of Fame alleged that the contractor and subcontractors were responsible for all aspects of stadium renovation, including AstroTurf. However, the contractor and subcontractors breached their agreement because the Hall of Fame Game could not be played. Also, the NFL Hall of Fame claims that it lost money and that its reputation suffered as a result of the game’s cancellation
In a statement to The Canton Repository on June 2, 2018, the NFL Hall of Fame said, “[i]n order to hold those legally responsible for installing and preparing the field for the 2016 Hall of Fame Game, it was necessary for the Pro Football Hall of Fame to file its complaint through [the contractor] in order to pursue those who were responsible for the preparation of the field for the game.”