Tarnished Twenty- The FindLaw Sports Law Blog

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No, this is not a new Naked Gun movie, nor is it the plot to the newest refresh of Dragnet, Police Squad, Hot Fuzz, Super Troopers, or Team America. NYPD officer extraordinaire, James Frascatore, has likely been living in a personal hell since, arguably, making the biggest mistake of his career: tackling and cuffing international tennis star James Blake.

However, now that Frascatore has hopefully been thoroughly made to regret his actions, he is filing a defamation lawsuit against the celebrity tennis star he tackled, the publisher of Blake's latest book, the city of New York, the NYPD, and others. The cop's lawsuit claims that the statements each made regarding the incident caused him reputational harm, and even led to members of the public making threats of violence against him and his family.

While Venus Williams was competing for a Wimbledon title, her lawyers were competing behind the scenes on a wrongful death lawsuit filed against the tennis star. Although police cleared Williams of responsibility in a car accident in Florida that ultimately claimed the life of Jerome Barson, Barson's widow and family sued, and discovery in the case is beginning to heat up.

The Daily Mail reports that Barson's family is requesting Williams's driving records, car insurance documents, and phone bills for the month of June, along with information regarding any and all medications she may have taken before the fatal crash.

Five-time Grand Slam champion Maria Sharapova has been banned from competitive tennis for two years by the International Tennis Federation (ITF). The ban is the result of positive tests and Sharapova's own admissions that she had used meldonium, an alleged performance-enhancing drug that was just placed on World Anti-Doping Agency's List of Prohibited Substances and Materials this year.

Here's a look at the ban, and Sharapova's options to appeal the decision.

Rafael Nadal has filed a defamation lawsuit against Roselyne Bachelot, France's former minister for health and sport, claiming that statements she made regarding doping damaged his reputation. Bachelot was on French television last month and said Nadal's seven-month injury hiatus in 2012 was "probably due to a positive doping test."

Nadal lashed back, saying, "I am tired about these things. I let it go a few times in the past. No more." The 14-time Grand Slam champion added, "this is going to be the last one because I'm going to sue her."

The highest-earning female athlete in the world admitted she failed a drug test for a banned performance enhancing substance. Maria Sharapova announced on Monday she tested positive for meldonium at January's Australian Open.

So what in the world is meldonium? How long will Sharapova be suspended, if at all? And what does that mean for her sponsorships, which have paid her in the neighborhood of $200 million?

NCAA Concussion Settlement: $75M, New Guidelines Proposed

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?

N.J. Bans Taunts, 'Trash Talk' in High School Sports

Trash talk is being taken out of New Jersey high school sports, pursuant to a new state policy that bans taunting in an attempt to curb bullying.

The New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association (NJSIAA), along with the New Jersey Attorney General's Office, announced the new policy last week. It prohibits high-school athletes from harassing others on the field or court, and takes effect this fall, reports the Associated Press.

Will this ban be the end of trash talking in New Jersey?

U.S. Open Security Guards Complain About Employment Violations

So what's it like to work behind the grandest New York sporting event -- the U.S. Open? Well, it's not as glamorous as one would think, if the claims of a group of U.S. Open security guards are true.

The U.S. Open tennis tournament just finished with one of the most exciting finals ever. But just as Andy Murray was finishing off Novak Djokovic in a five-set classic, several security guards working the event came public with allegations of the violations they had to endure working the event, reports The Village Voice.

The U.S. Open security guards made a variety of claims running the gamut of employment law. Below is a quick overview of the claims made by the guards, as reported by The Village Voice:

Lois Ann Goodman was arrested at a Manhattan hotel for allegedly killing her husband.

The 70-year-old U.S. Open tennis referee is accused of bludgeoning her husband to death with a coffee mug at their home in California, reports The New York Times.

While the tennis referee was quietly apprehended by police at her hotel, police indicate they were prepared to arrest her at the tennis tournament if necessary.

U.S. Open Tennis Umpires Illegally Denied Overtime: Federal Lawsuit

Possibly putting a damper on the annual tennis tournament currently underway in New York, a group of four U.S. Open umpires have filed a federal wage lawsuit against the U.S. Tennis Association (USTA), claiming that the organization misclassified the officials as independent contractors so that they could avoid offering overtime pay and other benefits.

Seeking class action status, the lawsuit covers all U.S. Open umpires since 2005, many of whom were only paid between $115 and $200 a day despite working in excess of 40 hours a week.