Tarnished Twenty- The FindLaw Sports Law Blog

January 2012 Archives

WWE Wrestler, Harvard Law Grad David Otunga Wins NY Pro Bono Case

He may play a lawyer on TV, but the WWE's A-List is a real attorney with a real degree from Harvard Law. And he just won a case.

David Otunga took a break from his usual shenanigans last week to help a man seeking unemployment benefits from the state. The pro bono case was such a success, the wrestler told TMZ he "smoked the witness during cross examination."

There is no word on whether he was wearing a suit or his usual bowtie and vest.

He had us at "hello," but now his creditors are demanding, "Show me the money!" The man who inspired the movie "Jerry Maguire," superagent Leigh Steinberg, has filed for bankruptcy.

Steinberg filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection in Orange County, Calif., on Jan. 11, the Associated Press reports. Steinberg's debts include $1.4 million in unpaid rent for an office he leased in Newport Beach.

The famous sports agent blamed his financial problems on a long battle with alcoholism. "I just lost track while I was in rehab," Steinberg told the AP.

A former pro wrestler known as "Gangsta of Love" made some bad moves in bed. Now Andre Davis is headed to prison for failing to tell his sex partners he was HIV-positive.

Davis, 29, was sentenced to 32 years in prison after a Cincinnati jury convicted him of felonious assaults on 11 women, The Oxford Press reports. The charges stem from an Ohio law that requires people who are HIV-positive to disclose their status before engaging in sexual conduct.

The extent of Davis' deception isn't fully known, but prosecutors contend Davis may have slept with as many as 350 women while traveling the country as a wrestler. Davis' defense: He's a sex addict.

The San Francisco 49ers' NFC title loss to the New York Giants left a lot of Niners fans heartbroken -- and angry. Now punt returner Kyle Williams is receiving death threats via Twitter.

In case you missed it, Kyle Williams' fumble in overtime led to the Giants' field goal that won the NFC Championship, 20-17. Afterwards, Niners teammates "kind of patted me on the back and said, 'It's not all on your shoulders,'" Williams gamely told reporters after the game.

But some fans felt differently, and posted death threats on Twitter. Some fans may even have crossed a legal line with their threatening tweets, for example:

Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger has settled a lawsuit that accused him of raping a hostess at a Lake Tahoe hotel in 2008.

Lawyers for Roethlisberger's accuser, Andrea McNulty, confirmed the settlement Friday but would not discuss its terms, the Reno Gazette-Journal reports. Neither party would say if the settlement included a payout.

A judge in Reno, Nev., dismissed the Ben Roethlisberger rape lawsuit on Dec. 27 after both sides agreed. The dismissal followed dueling allegations of bad behavior by both Roethlisberger and his accuser.

Penn State's legendary former head football coach Joe Paterno died Sunday after a battle with lung cancer. But JoePa may not get to rest in peace, if members of the Westboro Baptist Church get their way.

Westboro's members, who have picketed at funerals for dead servicemembers, plan to protest the late Joe Paterno's funeral as well. The group announced its intentions in a Twitter message:

"'Penn State Penn Rape' rings in Joe Paterno's ears in hell," the tweet begins, according to New York's WNBC-TV. "He partook of sin for fame & fortune. Worth NOTHING to him now. #PicketFuneral"

A college rivalry is one thing, but this is potentially criminal: New Orleans police are looking into the videotaped sexual assault of an unconscious man wearing LSU football gear. The alleged attackers: University of Alabama football fans.

The incident happened at a fast-food joint in New Orleans' French Quarter, the New Orleans Times-Picayune reports. Alabama had just dominated LSU to win the BCS title, 21-0.

Bama fans celebrated up and down Bourbon Street, but some of the rowdiness apparently got out of hand.

The Jacksonville Jaguars' Paul Vance has been fired as general counsel, and a costly typo in a series of contracts may be to blame.

Vance, the Jaguars' general counsel since 1994, also served as the team's senior vice president of football operations, ESPN reports. The team fired him Sunday.

Paul Vance's firing is apparently linked to a typo in the contracts of seven former assistant coaches, ESPN reports.

Floyd Mayweather's Jail Term Suspended So He Can Fight in May

A Las Vegas judge has agreed to postpone Floyd Mayweather's jail term so he can train for a fight on Cinco de Mayo. Though he has no opponent, his managers have reserved the MGM Grand Garden Arena and made arrangements for pay-per-view television.

Mayweather was sentenced to 90 days in jail last month after he pleaded guilty to domestic violence. He was accused of violently attacking his ex-girlfriend while two of their children watched on.

Steelers Coach Kirby Wilson Badly Burned in House Fire

Pittsburgh Steelers running backs coach Kirby Wilson's fire-related injuries will keep him away from Sunday's wild-card game against the Denver Broncos.

Wilson was burned after a fire broke out at his home at around 3 a.m. in the Seven Fields suburb of Pittsburgh.

Firefighters say the fire started in the kitchen. Wilson suffered "moderate to severe" burns, reports the AP. The injuries are not life threatening, though the 50-year-old coach was hospitalized.

Nelson Mandela's daughter plans to appeal a costly court ruling over plans for a Pacquiao-Mayweather fight that never happened.

The ruling follows a failed attempt by Mandela's daughter to organize a fight between the world's top two boxers, Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather, gossip website TMZ.com reports. The bout was supposed to coincide with Nelson Mandela's 93rd birthday bash in South Africa.

The fight fell through, and a boxing promoter sued Mandela's daughter, Zindziswa, for breach of contract. Among the promoter's claims: that Zindziswa promised him a 15% commission, and that Zindziswa failed to pay his expenses as promised -- including bills at a Los Angeles hotel where he was kicked out, the UK's The Week reports.

Will Raiders-49ers Games Continue After Spate of Shootings?

As you may have heard, the annual Raiders-49ers game has been canceled. Dubbed the "Battle of the Bay," the pre-season "friendly" is supposed to pit the Oakland Raiders against the San Francisco 49ers in a cross-bay showdown.

Unfortunately, the games are almost always marred by violence.

The most recent "Battle of the Bay" game at the start of the 2011 season was no different. The game took place at Candlestick Park in San Francisco. Violence erupted when two men, aged 20 and 24, were shot in the parking lot at separate times. And, another 26-year-old man was beaten in a stadium bathroom, reports the San Jose Mercury News.