The NFL and the NFLPA were back in court in Minneapolis this morning. US 8th District Judge David Doty was hearing the arguments from both sides as he tries to decide what exactly to do with the frozen $4 billion that the NFL received from the networks as 'lockout insurance'. The judge had already previously ruled that the stipulation in the contract that paid the league even if no games are played, was definitely the owners attempting to fund themselves and freeze the players out.
It's been my impression that any money awarded to the NFLPA could be a bad thing for the lockout ending. It is unprecedented waters, this current labor strife, but it could be within the realm of reason that the players side (after being awarded damages) would be less inclined to take whatever deal the owners put on the table. The danger of missing paychecks would be lessened greatly with millions to billions to divvy up. Not a legal expert, but I'd imagine that is at least being mapped out if possible.
As you know, I'm now a full-fledged twitter addict. In my youth, I always seemed to find myself on the cutting edge of things, getting on board before the masses. In my old age, I now tend to make sure something isn't a fad before I devote any energy towards it. Twitter is now one of those things. I'm going to try out this idea for a potential recurring series (and because I love coming up with catchy article titles).Today's featured tweeter is Albert Breer of NFL.com, @AlbertBreer.
Follow the jump for the Tweet Beat from today's legal proceedings, and don't forget to follow us @BloggingTheBoys or me @KDP10For10.
Back in front of the federal courthouse in Minneapolis, awaiting the 9 a.m. damages hearing in the networks rights fees case.
Walked in the courtroom ... Here's an interesting person in here: Panthers WR Steve Smith.
Hearing is over. Judge Doty takes arguments "under advisement". So no ruling today.
Kessler argues that injunction to keep league from accessing the $4 billion in tv money should be ruled on expeditiously.
NFLPA lawyers: $707 million as baseline for damages, with more subjective factors (i.e. Digital rights) pushing figure significantly higher.
To be clear on NFLPA lawyer Tom Heiden told all us: The $707 million figure is a jumping-off point on damages. They're asking for much more.
Heiden said $707M in damages, "In addition to the damages for the exchange of Red Zone rights, digital rights and the extra game for NBC."
@SBJLizMullen @AlbertBreer @SportsLawGuy It's my impression the $707M is what the NFLPA feels its owed in rights fees re: TV contracts
@SBJLizMullen $707 Million, plus damages from Red Zone rights, digital rights and the extra game NBC got in 2010.
@AlbertBreer Thanks Albert. But my question is, is the $707M number after damages are trebled or before? Or can those damages be trebled?
@SBJLizMullen I'm told the players are seeking "compensatory and punitive damages" to punish/deter future behavior. Generally awarded 4:1.
@SBJLizMullen So the number is $707M, plus RZ, digital, extra NBC money. Then, the damages would be 3x that on top of the original number.
NFL lawyer Gregg Levy on Doty ruling, whenever it comes: "However he resolves them, they're likely to be appealed to the 8th circuit."
Noun 1. treble damages - three times the amount that a court would normally find the injured party entitled to exemplary damages, punitive damages, smart money - (law) compensation in excess of actual damages (a form of punishment awarded in cases of malicious or willful misconduct
Random note: There were some tweets out there that the Judge may wait until the appellate court rules on June 3rd for the overall lockout legality, before making his determination in this case. They have since been removed from the tweetosphere, so I'll be looking for further confirmation.
@ProFootballTalk This a joke?: Vegas bookmakers have installed Doty as a 1:2 favorite to make a ruling before 8th Circuit Court of Appeals.