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Fans have long-complained about sports leagues' TV blackout rules, which restrict certain games from certain broadcasters. But one group of fans who decided to sue Major League Baseball and the National Hockey League over their use of blackouts got a huge boost last week.

U.S. District Court judge Shira Scheindlin granted the plaintiffs' motion to certify class-action status, finding that all consumers in the market for MLB and NHL content have the same alleged injury and can therefore sue as a group.

Here's what that could mean for fans down the road.

After Swedish prosecutors watched video of former Toronto Maple Leafs player Andre Deveaux viciously slash an opponent in pregame warm ups, they decided to file criminal charges and issued a warrant for his arrest. Which, for hockey fans, may have brought to mind an infamous incident in 2000 when Marty McSorley bashed Donald Brashear in the head with his stick (2:50 into the video), giving him a grade 3 concussion.

McSorley was charged with and found guilty of assault, only the second criminal trial for on-ice violence in a league that tacitly approves of players taking breaks from game play to punch each other in the face from time to time. Punching which, to date, has resulted in zero criminal convictions.

So when does playing a sport constitute a crime? And what kind of game behavior crosses the line from acceptable in a sporting contest to unacceptable in any context?

Blue Jackets' Jack Johnson Files for Bankruptcy: 3 Lessons

Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman Jack Johnson has earned more than $18 million over his nine-year NHL hockey career. But according to bankruptcy documents filed last month in federal court, it's almost all gone.

Not only is Jack Johnson broke, but Johnson has outstanding debts of as much as $15 million, reports The Columbus Dispatch. And while the story of a professional athlete squandering large sums of money is nothing new, Johnson's path to bankruptcy has an especially cruel twist. Many of the financial decisions that led him to this point were made by his parents, to whom he had given full control of his finances.

What can be learned from Jack Johnson's bankruptcy? Here are three lessons:

ESPN's Linda Cohn was injured when a coin change machine fell on her at an ice rink, and now she's suing.

The veteran sportscaster suffered a "real deep" wound to her right arm in March, reports The Journal News. Cohn received 25 stitches to her arm that left "a Frankenstein-like scar that looks like her hand and arm were sewn together," and she's suing the owners of the Brewster Ice Arena in Brewster, New York, to recover.

How did this coin machine fall on Cohn, and is the rink responsible?

The NCAA has reached a $75 million settlement agreement in the various concussion cases filed against it, with new guidelines proposed for each of its member schools.

According to USA Today, the proposed settlement doesn't include any damages for the individual plaintiffs named in the suits, but it allows these players to file "separate personal injury lawsuits." The $75 million instead will go toward medical monitoring for current and former NCAA players, as well as research.

What else should fans know about this NCAA settlement?

Will NCAA Concussion Lawsuits Be Consolidated?

Ten ex-football players' concussion-related lawsuits are pending against the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). But the cases may soon be consolidated to streamline the settlement process. A two-year-old concussion lawsuit against the NCAA is in settlement talks -- now nine other lawsuits may enter the mix.

But what does it mean to consolidate cases?

Former NHL players are rallying to sue the League for not doing enough to protect past players from concussions.

St. Louis Blues player Gary Leeman (1996-1997) and nine other former players have joined in a federal class-action lawsuit on Monday against the National Hockey League (NHL), seeking compensation for past and future medical costs as a result of brain trauma incurred during their careers, reports ESPN.

Will ex-hockey players follow former football stars in reaching a settlement for their injuries?