Bernie Parrish on John Madden’s ‘Retirement’
Subject: Madden not paying retired players while collecting over $100 million in royalties off the retired players’ backs – Did Madden scramble your identity to keep from paying you?
The retired NFL players who were used in Madden EA video games will be suing Madden and EA for using us in those games without compensating us. Madden’s agent Sandy Montag boasts he and Madden collected over $100,000,000 in royalties while paying the retired NFL players used in those games absolutely nothing. Madden knows that the ugly truthful litigation is coming and is probably factoring that into his retirement. I doubt he wants to answer all those fans who will be asking, “Why, John Madden? Why did you screw all those retired players over, you seemed like such a friendly, good-natured buffoon?”
We probably won’t use Manatt Phelps and Phillips and McKool Smith, the attorneys who obtained a $28.1 million verdict for us against the NFLPA for “scrambling retired players identities” in those video games. The jury found it a “grossly fraudulent” action taken so they wouldn’t have to pay the retired players. That case Parrish v NFLPA Case No. 07 0943 WHA carries $21 million in punitive damages and is being appealed to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, which doesn’t mean the decision has been overturned nor does it lessen the verdict found by the jury. In my opinion, Madden should have been included in our licensing suit against the NFLPA and so should Electronic Arts.
Irregularities in the trial may even bring about a retrial that will allow the award to be in the $100+ million range where it should have been instead of only $28.1 million. The case is already being retried in the media by Richard Berthelsen and Jeffery Kessler. Regardless of their propaganda, the case has nothing to do with the issue of the number of high profile players not signing what the Judge William Alsup calls a “masterpiece of obfuscating.” That “masterpiece of obfuscation” is the Group Licensing Agreements (GLA) drafted by the NFLPA’s Richard Berthelsen and Jeffery Kessler. The “grossly fraudulent obfuscation” – that GLA – is the issue that lost the NFLPA the $28.1 million. Our side of the trial was warned by Judge Alsup that if we talked to the press about the case he would hold us in contempt. On the other hand, Berthelsen and Kessler seem to be exempt from spinning their previously defeated arguments to try to win them in media articles before the 9th Circuit Court hears the case. Worse yet, they’re now using publications where they have spent over $281,000 over the last several years for NFLPA advertising. So they’re not only retrying the case in the media, they’re actually paying the media to retry the case as an advertisement in the court of public opinion to try to influence the 9th Circuit Court. Are those actions contemptuous? It seems to me that most of what they do is contemptuous. Rigging a union election is contemptuous and it is also illegal.
2,062 retired NFL players participated in our lawsuit with only 12 retired players opting out, 10 of whom work for the defendant – the NFLPA. That’s an amazing vote of endorsement by the retired NFL players.
I am asking each of those 2,062 retired players to leave $1,000 apiece of their now estimated $13,000 settlement from Parrish v NFLPA Case No. 07 0943 WHA in a litigation War Chest to pursue all of the legal issues still exploiting the retired players from the Retirement Disability Plan for its abuses of discretion and Aon Corporation and conflicts of interest, to NFL Ventures and its CEO, the Commissioner, NFL Films showing vintage era games, and individuals like Condon, Berthelsen and Kessler and numerous other issues. All of the retired players – 13,000 of them – will be participating, not just those who signed the “masterpiece of obfuscation,” except for the 12 who opted out. (Normally 20% or 400 out of 2,000 would opt out of any class action suit, so with only 12 opting out, that was a landslide of approval: 2,062 out of 2,074.) I believe the whole 13,000 are standing behind my plans to get justice for them now and will be in the future. They stand to recover $100’s of millions of dollars over the coming years for their children and grandchildren.
We are just now at the beginning of the appeals. No deals were made at the Katz/DeMaurice Smith meeting the Thursday before the Sunday 3/15/09 election and no deals are going to be made with DeMaurice Smith (who has been installed via a rigged Union election) to settle our case for less than $28.1 million for any reason, not because he and our attorney, Ron Katz, are old buddies and their law firms (Patton Boggs and Manatt Phelps & Phillips respectively) have such “mutual respect” for each other. And no deals are going to be made because John Madden is moving his act to his home office where he will continue to screw over the retired players without having to face the fans around the country. Madden and Montag plan to continue licensing Madden Football without compensating retired players but advertisers may not find the “dog food” quite so tasty once the suit is filed because those advertisers will probably be included in the suit.
Bernie Parrish Retired Players Advocate
(202) 386-6400 Retired Players for Justice (click for link)
NOTE: Patton Boggs is Washington D.C.’s largest lobbyist law firm, having passed out over $312 million to lobbyists in 2008 alone. Rep. James Moran is one of Patton Boggs’ recipients of contributions and Rep. Moran is NFLPA Human Resources Manager Mary Moran’s father, who now has Patton Boggs indebted to him for helping maneuver Patton Boggs’ DeMaurice Smith into the NFLPA’s Executive Director’s position by dumping political mud on candidate Troy Vincent.Bernie Parrish Cleveland Browns, Houston Oilers 1959 – 1966