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2016 Hall of Fame game class action is set for trial on June 5

The NBA’s new CBA eliminates marijuana testing and allows players to invest in NBA teams and more, which leads Mike Florio and Chris Simms to analyze how long they think it’ll take the NFL to do the same.

Nearly seven years ago, the NFL couldn’t play the Hall of Fame game between the Colts and Packers due to a bungled effort to paint the field. That sparked a class action lawsuit on behalf of those who bought tickets to the game.

The lawsuit, originally filed by Michael Avenatti (more on him in a second), has been pending for years. It’s due to go to trial on June 5.

Notice has been sent to those who are currently in the class. If those who had tickets to the game (and who haven’t accepted reimbursement from the league) don’t opt out, they’ll remain in the class. (At this point, there’s really no reason to opt out.)

The case has been certified for class-action treatment on the issue of liability only. At that point, the damages calculations would hinge on the recoverable financial losses experienced by people who showed up for a game that didn’t happen.

Some will have travel expenses. Some will have hotel expenses. Some may have used vacation leave to travel. Some bought things at the game, after they were allegedly told the game would still be played.

For now, the threshold question is whether the Hall of Fame has legal responsibility to the ticket holders for failing to play the game.

And why wouldn’t it? Someone screwed up the field. It wasn’t weather or external foul play or anything other than negligence by those responsible for getting the field ready.

More information about the lawsuit can be found here. The website includes a link to the First Amended Complaint, signed by Avenatti.

Avenatti handled the class action arising from the Super Bowl XLV seating fiasco. He later represented Stormy Daniels, when her issues with Donald Trump first came to light.

Avenatti quickly became a cable-news celebrity, and he actually flirted with running for president in 2020.

Thereafter, the wheels came off his career. He was convicted of extorting Nike, and he was sentenced to 30 months in prison. He also was convicted of stealing millions from clients and tax fraud. In December 2022, he received a 14-year prison term.

But his case against the Hall of Fame continues. Obviously with other counsel handling it.