7 Most Ridiculous Lawsuits in the World of Sports

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Have you ever thought about suing a sports star simply because he looks like you? Well someone has. And he actually went through with it.

Every now and then, international gambling news report about yet another absurd lawsuit and the world of sports is no exception. In fact, sports fans must have surely heard about some of the lawsuits we will mention in this article, because the media has promoted them more than enough.

Some of these cases are old, others are more recent; but they all have one thing in common: they are absolutely ridiculous.

Yogi Berra sued the Turner Broadcasting System after the company used his name in an advertisement for the popular TV show Sex & the City. The media company had a long-running campaign on subways and buses in New York.

One spot asked for the definition of a “Yogasm” and offered the following three possible answers: a type of yo-yo; sex with Yogi Berra; or what Samantha has with a guy from yoga class. The former Major League Baseball catcher, outfielder, and manager thought this was offensive and decided to sue TBS for $10 million. The parties eventually reached an agreement, but its terms remained undisclosed.

The previous lawsuit happened back in 2005, so let’s move on to a more recent one. A former cheerleader from the New York Jets Flight Crew recently sued the team for not paying her enough. In her lawsuit, Krystal C and her attorney claim Jets cheerleaders are only paid $150 per game and $100 for outside events.

Flight Crew members have to attend practices three times a week, from May to December, and also rehearse on their own time, without being compensated for these obligations. But the team also asked Krystal to straighten her hair on ten occasions, which ended up costing her $450, and when her employer refused to reimburse her, she decided to sue.

This January, Josh Finkelman was so outraged by the sky-high prices of Super Bowl tickets that he decided to sue the National Football League. A resident of New Jersey and a devoted football fan, Finkelman hopes he can turn this into a class action and convince the League to offer tickets at more affordable prices.

“I was upset about the price I paid for the tickets. We found out this was an illegal practice,” he told reporters. The man accused the NFL of unjust enrichment and said the league was violating state consumer fraud law, claiming that just 1% of the total number of tickets is available to the public at face value, instead of 5%, as required by state law.

After years and years of being mistaken for a basketball pro – namely NBA star Michael Jordan – in 2006 Allen Heckard decided it was finally time to take action and do something to put an end to this constant harassment.

The man sued Jordan for “defamation, permanent injury, and emotional pain and suffering”, as well as Nike for making him famous through their commercials. If you think this is ridiculous, wait until we tell you how much he asked for: $416 million! Heckard started this battle on his own, so it was pretty easy for Nike’s lawyers to track him down and convince him to drop the lawsuit. Or else!

In 1993, former New Jersey quarterback Bryan Fortay filed a lawsuit against Dennis Erickson, who was coaching the Hurricanes at that moment, for… promising his father that the young man would become the starter if he came to Miami.

What actually happened was that Gino Toretta beat Fortay and ended up being transferred to Rutgers. Three years later, the involved parties reached an undisclosed settlement and Fortay went on to play in the Arena League.

Most sports fans remember Super Bowl XLVI as the year when Eli beat Brady for his second championship. Not the NFL though. The league remembers it as the year when singer and rapper M.I.A flipped the bird during her halftime performance, a gesture that brought on a $15 million lawsuit.

The NFL is suing her for “restitution” in “tarnishing their image”, for a performance that no one really remembers or cares about. The whole thing went unnoticed, and not just by fans, but also by the Federal Communications Commission, which never even fined or sanctioned the NFL for the mishap.

The NFL has certainly had its fair share of ridiculous suits, including the one filed in 2012 against New Jersey lawmakers, over the legality of online gambling sites in the US state. The NCAA, NHL, NBA, and MLB also joined in on this one, claiming that they were looking to preserve the sanctity of the game.

There are probably hundreds of other such examples, and not just in the world of sports. Can you think of any?

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