As the NFL moves closer to resolving the most significant piece of litigation filed against it this year, the second-most significant piece of litigation continues to linger.
A class action was filed after fans who purchased tickets to the Super Bowl weren’t allowed into the game. Though the league seems to realize that something is owed to the 1,250 fans who showed up at Cowboys Stadium only to find that their seats weren’t available, the NFL and the lawyer representing the class sharply disagree as to the specific extent of the obligation.
Per the Associated Press, the plaintiffs contend in a document filed with the court on Tuesday that the class members also are entitled to compensation for lost income resulting from any employment leave used to travel to Dallas to attend the Super Bowl.
And we agree. Every year, fans take time off, buy plane tickets, rent hotel rooms, and incur all sorts of other expenses to travel to the Super Bowl. Arriving at the game with a ticket and not being allowed to enter the building justifies full repayment of every penny incurred on a wasted trip.
“The law permits the fans to receive 100 percent of their damages, and we intend on recovering just that,” lawyer Michael Avenatti said.
Though we believe that lawyers currently have no place in the ongoing negotiations between the NFL and the NFLPA*, lawyers are critical to the fair and proper assertion of the rights of fans who were lured to Dallas, under ultimately false pretenses. Absent a lawyer to fight for the affected fans, the fans would never get anything close to what they deserve. With a lawyer dedicated to holding the NFL accountable, perhaps they will.
Even more amazing to us is that the NFL isn’t bending over backwards to make things right for the affected fans. This isn’t the occasion for lowballing. The Super Bowl is, as sports go, a sacred event. The NFL should want to do everything in its power to fully reimburse every fan who made to trek to Texas under the impression that they’d be watching the Packers and the Steelers with their own eyes, and not through the lens of a TV camera.