This week the federal dockets were full of opinions, orders, and lawsuits concerning retired NFL players in both the disability and concussion settlement spheres as well as cases concerning other athletes.
We’ll try to recap as many as possible over the weekend so check back in when you can. The first story details an order in which Judge Brody sends a retired player to arbitrate his funding contract with Thrivest Specialty funding.
“Hit or Miss?” Litigation Funding Issues in NFL Concussion Settlement take an Odd Turn
On Thursday, Judge Anita Brody ordered former Rams and Redskins safety Toby Wright to arbitration with Thrivest Specialty funding. That she ordered the player to arbitration isn’t surprising considering an April 26 ruling by the Third Circuit, vacating her ruling that enjoined Thrivest from pursuing arbitration against a different player and her dismissal of Thrivest’s complaint against him, the tone of her order is somewhat curious.
Cognitively Impaired Player files Lawsuit Against NFL, NFLPA After 18 Years of Stonewalling
The NFL is inconsistent in many ways—player discipline, domestic violence, concussion protocols, and even enforcement of their on-field rules. Has anyone figured out what a catch is yet? The one area in which the NFL is the epitome of consistency is how they battle former players who seek to collect for disabilities resulting from their NFL careers. In both the CBA bargained disability plan and the concussion settlement, damaged players face an uphill battle to find recompense. “Delay, deny, and hope they die,” should be engraved on the cornerstone of every tax-payer subsidized NFL stadium. Such is the story of Andre Royal, as documented in a recently filed lawsuit against the NFL, the NFLPA and the Bert Bell/Pete Rozelle Retirement Plan.
Tenney v. FaZe Clan Proves Esports Can No Longer Be Ignored
A high-profile lawsuit between one of the most successful Fortnite streamers in the world and the esports company that signed him to a promotional deal has brought new attention to the industry. The lesson is that esports can no longer be treated as a fringe extension of the entertainment industry but rather as another component just as legitimate as film and theater.
Tfue, whose given name is Turner Tenney, is a popular Fortnite player whose live and recorded streams of himself playing the game draw millions of viewers. Tenney is able to monetize that content via Twitch and YouTube Gaming revenue share programs along with third-party endorsement deals for products endemic to his art.
NFL Concussion Settlement Atty Says “Release the 5 Percent”
In a motion filed on June 4, attorney James Acho, implores the court to release the 5% holdbacks that have been deducted from every paid award since claims processing began for the NFL Concussion Settlement.