The criticism of Judge Berman begins

AP

Privately, the NFL and its lawyers undoubtedly are blaming the outcome of the Tom Brady litigation not on their own mistakes but on the proclivities of a liberal, activist judge, appointed to the federal bench by a Democratic president. But that won’t resonate well with the public; even though Judge Berman was randomly assigned the case from a much broader pool of potential jurists, the NFL chose to file suit in the court that randomly assigned the case to Judge Berman.

Besides, why complain about the impact of judicial philosophies on the outcome of civil cases when there’s a basis or two for suggesting that the judge may be corrupt?

Via the New York Post, Judge Berman “mingled” with Patriots owner Robert Kraft at a weekend party at the Hamptons. Which is causing some to suggest that last week’s ruling was some sort of an inside job, engineered behind the scenes by Kraft.

“It was a chance encounter at a social event with hundreds of guests,” a Patriots representative told the Post. “There was a brief introduction and an exchange of pleasantries that lasted no more than a couple of minutes.”

Also present at the party, according to the Post, was Giants co-owner Jonathan Tisch. It’s unclear whether Tisch and Berman mingled or exchanged pleasantries or otherwise engaged in any behavior that someone could have used as convoluted evidence of corruption if the NFL had managed to win last week.

Mingling and social encountering with parties having direct or indirect involvement in litigation is irrelevant to the question of whether bias exists. Judges aren’t locked in dungeons. They have actual, mostly normal lives.

Sometimes, those lives lead to questions about potential conflicts of interest. As conflicts of interest go, Kraft and Judge Berman bumping into each other at a party is as close to meaningless as possible. To create a true cloud over Judge Berman’s objectivity, something far more tangible is needed.

It’s possible that the league has tried to float something more tangible. But not all that much more tangible.

Last week, Bart Hubbuch of the Post noted as an “[i]nteresting factual nugget” on Twitter that “Richard Berman’s former law-firm colleague Stephen Case is on Columbia’s BOT Emeriti with … Robert Kraft.”

So I did some research. (For a change.) And it turns out that, indeed, Case and Kraft both belong to the 38-member Board of Trustees Emeriti at Columbia. (That group is separate from the 24-member Board of Trustees that governs the school.)

Case currently serves as Managing Director and General Counsel for Emerald Development Managers. He previously spent more than 35 years at the law firm Davis Polk LLP. And Judge Berman did indeed work for that firm.

For four years. From 1970. To 1974.

In the 41 years since then, there has been no professional connection between Judge Berman and Case. During Judge Berman’s 17 years as a federal judge, he likely presided over multiple cases involving the firm with which he spent the first four years of his legal practice. And it’s incredibly unlikely that anyone has ever raised a single question about the potential for bias regarding Judge Berman and his former firm.

Still, only one day after Judge Berman ruled against the NFL and in favor of Kraft’s most important on-field employee, a report emerged that subtly questioned Judge Berman’s objectivity over a professional relationship that ended more than four decades ago. At the risk of violating the notion that reporters shouldn’t wonder aloud about other reporter’s sources, this feels like something the NFL’s lawyers knew about throughout the pending litigation, something they never raised in court (because Judge Berman would have laughed at them if they had), and something they planned to leak to a sympathetic ear in the media if/when Judge Berman ruled against them.

Ultimately, it’s an attack on the credibility of a federal judge. Possibly put in motion by a league office that became indignant when CNN’s Rachel Nichols questioned whether former FBI director Robert Mueller had a conflict of interest when investigating the Ray Rice situation given other connections between his law firm and the NFL.

Another federal judge probably should get ready for some of the same. The Honorable José A. Cabranes is one of the 22 judges sitting on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. And Judge Cabranes also serves on the Columbia Board of Trustees Emeriti with Robert Kraft.

Moving forward, let’s see whether the league files a motion to disqualify Judge Cabranes before the case is submitted, or whether someone leaks to the media the connection after Cabranes gives the NFL a ruling it doesn’t like.

175 responses to “The criticism of Judge Berman begins

  1. So it turns out the judge was a buddy of Kraft. You’ve got to hand it to that organization. They’re dirty top to bottom.

  2. Judge Berman “mingled” with Patriots owner Robert Kraft at a weekend party at the Hamptons
    ====================================

    Well then. Yeah. That doesn’t look good.

  3. This apparent campaign speaks volumes about the ethics of both the NFL office and some “journalists.”

  4. Maybe Minnesota would have been a more productive gig after all, lol.

    Goodell and the NFL have had egg on their collective face from the moment the commish appointed himself the “neutral arbitor”. Should have cut their losses before they could no longer save face.

  5. Ugh, why are you giving any credence to this incredible grasping at straws by trolls like Hubbuch. It was a media party; Kraft used to be on the board at Viacom and Berman used to be a senior VP at Warner Cable. Let ESPN do the league’s water-carrying.

  6. “It was a chance encounter at a social event with hundreds of guests,” a Patriots representative told the Post. “”””

    I’m willing to bet if the stats analysis gets crunched. Those chances are higher then the fumbling stats.

  7. Man, the NFL is showing its desperation the way Kim Kardashian flaunts her big butt. Pathetic to leak stories like this to make up for incompetence by the commissioner and the league’s lawyers. Really pathetic.

  8. Hilarious!! Now th NFL is going to tip Mortenson on Federal Judges…probably run a little slander piece on ESPN about it. Anyone still wonder how cuporrupt the NFL is now? Is that still even up for debate?

    Leaking crap on an NFL judge…who would have thunk it? I’m just going to sit back and watch the NFL make themselves look even more foolish.

  9. “So it turns out the judge was a buddy of Kraft. You’ve got to hand it to that organization. They’re dirty top to bottom.”

    I know Pats haters like you have some difficulty, you know, actually reading articles…. but maybe you at least should before you comment.

    Tell me, based on the information in this article or elsewhere, how are Berman and Kraft buddies; and furthermore, why would the NFL allow the court preceedings to be controlled by such an evidently partial authority?

  10. Claims that judges are “biased” rarely end well for the claiming party. Other judges will remember this attack on one of their own.

    The NFL chose NYC to file figuring it would be better than Minnesota for them. Like all the decisions associated with this case it turned out to be a bad idea. But the NFL just will not admit it screwed up.

    First rule when finding oneself in a hole — stop digging.

  11. If the NFL is looking for conflicts of interest in the rulings to which they are a party, they don’t even have to leave the office. The NFL write the book on conflicts of interest.

  12. Wells likely wasn’t impartial. Perhaps judge Berman wasn’t impartial. What really bugs me is that the judge spoke at length in his ruling about the missteps of the NFL but did not mention at all Brady’s destroying of evidence or the Pats and Brady’s lack of cooperation. He certainly could have let Brady off on the technicalities he did but still addressed all the evidence which pointed to Brady’s guilt. Not sure why he didn’t? Honestly I was shocked when in the last CBA the players gave complete control over discipline to the commish. I wouldn’t be surprised if the NFLs appeal succeeds.

  13. Several yeas ago,there was a deafening silence fot eh most part when SCOTUS Justices Thomas and Scalia attended a Koch brothers wingding a few weeks before they were slated to hand down a ruling that directly involved their hosts and ultimately was in their favor.

    As much as some of us might want to start impeachment proceedings because of this, it is most likely the same kind of thing as involved Robert Kraft and Judge Berman…on a higher level and a lot more suspicious, but still pretty much the same.

  14. Thats a laugher…assigning Berman was random. Sure…If Jastremski went to court, it would have been random. If a black guy would have gone to court, it would have been random. With Brady going to court, it is definitely NOT random.

  15. There was a brief introduction and an exchange of pleasantries…
    ==============================

    “Pleasantries”… is that what they call $5 Million in unmarked bills, these days?

  16. I heard Kraft and Berman both own homes………I hope there isn’t some sort of ‘homeownership’ angle at work here……maybe they both financed their homes…..through BANKS! They both have drivers licenses also……I’m seeing dozens of possible connections here….does anyone know if Berman has a son that’s the President of an NFL team?

  17. ..
    There’s enough independent legal eyes looking at each syllable uttered by Judge Berman, that it would be near impossible to issue a bogus opinion .
    .

  18. Please… No federal judge would risk their career to and a jail sentence to support a former acquaintance or even their best friend.

    I understand how their political viewpoint could come into play in a union case, but there is no way a friendship would someone would impact a ruling. We need to have a little more respect for what it takes to become a judge.

    Judges are there to do a job, and that’s what Berman did. You can’t argue with his ruling. It was very logical.

  19. “swagger52 says:
    Sep 7, 2015 2:12 PM
    Typical NE blow-hard hypocrite. He doesn’t think Ted Wells can be independent, yet he can be independent after mingling at party with Kraft.”

    You understand that the NFL was literally paying Wells, and Kraft never met Berman until AFTER the verdict.

    Does your brain really work this way?

  20. Why would it matter if Berman talked to the Giants co-owner? That doesn’t make any sense. It does look a bit odd that he “mingled” with Kraft. But referring to him talking to personel in the Giants organization doesn’t help the argument. Maybe if it was the Colts, or Ravens. Then you might be onto something.

  21. If this 4 year overlap from 40 years ago creates bias, then what about the prior relationships of Goodel, Kensil or Vincent?

    If the NFL has such a low hurdle for evidence of bias, the case agst Goodell as partial is even stronger.

    Very tenuous circumstantial evidence agst Brady and Berman is ok, but clear and alternative explanations for every datapoint are not.

    What a petty bunch of jerks in the league office. If the same microscope was turned inward on the NFL, they’d all be out of work

  22. abninf says:
    Sep 7, 2015 2:01 PM
    Judge Berman “mingled” with Patriots owner Robert Kraft at a weekend party at the Hamptons
    ====================================

    Well then. Yeah. That doesn’t look good.

    =========

    I guess you stopped reading at that point because you had all the info you needed to back up what you already believed. Just to fill you in, the next paragraph stated that the owner of the Giants was also there.

  23. bsandersislegend20 says:
    Sep 7, 2015 2:18 PM
    Why would it matter if Berman talked to the Giants co-owner? That doesn’t make any sense. It does look a bit odd that he “mingled” with Kraft. But referring to him talking to personel in the Giants organization doesn’t help the argument. Maybe if it was the Colts, or Ravens. Then you might be onto something.
    =========

    Umm……..Because the Giants owner is one of the most influential in the league and supported the league’s position against Brady?

    This wasn’t Brady and The Pats against the Colts and Ravens. This was Brady against the NFL.

    Giants are still in the NFL, right?

  24. I understand how their political viewpoint could come into play in a union case, but there is no way a friendship would someone would impact a ruling. We need to have a little more respect for what it takes to become a judge

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Thank goodness for some people out there with intelligence!

    For anyone to insinuate a Federal Judge is going to give a biased verdict for someone who is at best tangentially connected to them is somewhat psychotic!!!

  25. Judge Berman asked the NFL lawyers what evidence they had against Brady. They admitted, under oath, that they had no evidence.

    It doesn’t matter if Berman mingled with Kraft or was having an affair with him, the NFL admitted in court that they have no case. Any judge would have ruled the same way.

  26. Stupid is as stupid does .Questioning the integrity of a sitting federal judge in the same circuit in which you seek redress is either the height of stupidity or the height of hubris.

  27. How did the Patriots explain the firing of equipment guys if there was no wrong doing??? That alone shows guilt. If they aren’t guilty those guys should get their jobs back. Any judge with no connections should have asked himself that question. But then again he’s tied to Kraft somehow. Scumbags all the way around.

  28. Some people here are insinuating that a Federal Judge would break the law and intentionally rule in favor of an acquaintance instead of fairly judging the case.

    Have you met a judge? That’s not what they do. Their whole life is dedicated to upholding the law.

    That’s a pretty serious claim.

    The fact Kraft spoke to him when they happened to be at the same party is exactly what Kraft should have done. Why not say hi if you find out you are at the same party.

  29. “Judge Berman asked the NFL lawyers what evidence they had against Brady. They admitted, under oath, that they had no evidence.”

    Because it was destroyed by Brady and the Pats. Well played cheaters; well played.

  30. a1b24312 says:
    Sep 7, 2015 2:31 PM

    just a matter of time – he will be overturned

    ———-

    That’s not even how it works. The appeal court would review the case and send it back to Berman if there were any considerations that they felt needed to be changed. It’s not another separate ruling.

  31. It’s been previously been reported that Goodell’s father had a friendly relationship with Berman.

    I dunno messing with a Federal Judge in the Court they chose is not very smart. Then again Goodell could have been found in Contempt of Court in MN. They’ve lost every case that has gone to Federal court so the NFL does mind being above the law.

  32. And here comes the corporate machine, trying to smear an “activist” judge who thinks (because he has a brain) that management should NEVER have carte blanche.

    The NFL interpreted its CBA with the players association as granting infinite latitude in disciplinary matters. Their arrogance is astounding. Berman was morally and legally right, absolutely right, absolutely American, to inform them that such is not the case.

    I hope they get crushed, 3-0, in the appellate court.

  33. There was a brief introduction and an exchange of pleasantries…
    ==============================

    “Pleasantries”… is that what they call $5 Million in unmarked bills, these days?
    ===

    Slanderous.

  34. floratiotime says:
    Sep 7, 2015 2:36 PM

    “Judge Berman asked the NFL lawyers what evidence they had against Brady. They admitted, under oath, that they had no evidence.”

    Because it was destroyed by Brady and the Pats. Well played cheaters; well played.

    —————–

    Did you know Wells reviewed all emails and texts to and from Brady to every single Patriots employee including Belichick? Bet you didn’t.

  35. Wow! So when all fails they blame the Judge. Judge Berman protected an individual against an unfair process and the lack of evidence connecting Tom Brady to deflating footballs in the AFC Championship game. The public had to listen to the NFL’s rhetoric on Tom Brady being guilty, the smearing of his reputation etc….now we have to hear about how the political background of Judge Berman motivated him to rule against the corrupt NFL.

    I just wonder if Goodell and his Lawyers would ever consider that they made a mistake in judging an issue that did not have precedence. Ryan Smith an Attorney who gave his opinion on ESPN clearly saw a possibility for this decision based on the merits. Lester Munson also an ESPN legal analyst thought he was smarter than anyone else in the room in stating that the NFL would prevail. Well I guess he was just wrong about this unprecedented case. The NFL and Roger Goodell should suck it up and walk away from this quietly. However they will not which allows me to believe that many of the NFL franchise owners want the Patriots punished and given an unfair advantage on the football field.

  36. Brady destroys every single phone he’s ever had. He destroys this phone AFTER Wells says he doesn’t need it and still provides documented proof of every single text and phone call, you know, the texts that were NEVER GOING TO BE RELEASED because they were private, and besides, they ‘only keep the ones concerning deflate gate and the others will be destroyed! But hey, wait, let’s release this one about the swimming pool cover to the media’…….WTF….is there really some cement head moron out there who believes one of the ball boys videotaped themselves removing the air and sent it to Brady?

  37. Just reading the posters comments. You either have no reading comprehension, or really hate Brady. Where does this hatred come from?

    The NFL just can’t help themselves. First slander Brady now they are going after a judge? Smh, doesn’t this league preach taking responsibility for your actions and fine many players because of it?

    Be careful NFL you aren’t just going after a football player any more the is a federal judge.

    This is such a sad, pathetic attempt, but it’s actually working when you read the comments.

  38. Well well kraft & berman exchanged pleasantries(a large duffle bag with unknown contents). If appeals court overturns this & brady misses games in december it’s going to be hysterical.

  39. How did the Patriots explain the firing of equipment guys if there was no wrong doing??? That alone shows guilt. If they aren’t guilty those guys should get their jobs back. Any judge with no connections should have asked himself that question. But then again he’s tied to Kraft somehow. Scumbags all the way around.

    ———————————–

    It’s in the Pash-Wells report, Vincent told them to suspend the two. They can’t be re- employed with the Patriots until Vincent tells them they can. Can people please try to up with something that isn’t pure drivel?

  40. Wait…..

    This party happened two days ago (Saturday night). Judge Berman wrote his decision no later than four days ago (Thursday). How can something that happened Saturday night possibly influence something that happened earlier in the week? The only people who think this is a big deal are the people who think that Spygate invalidates the first three NEP Championships. They think this because they don’t understand the unidirectional nature of the arrow of time.

  41. If the NFL wants to know if Berman was on the take, maybe they should demand his phone … if he hasn’t destroyed it yet.

    Judge Sherman showed bias. alright. The man is a football fan and he did anything he could to help save the sport. Lord knows you or I would do the same if anything we did had influence over the league.

    Personally, I’d put Goodell UNDER the jail.

  42. Well well kraft & berman exchanged pleasantries(a large duffle bag with unknown contents).
    ===
    You need to be careful and refrain from slandering a federal judge. The internet isn’t nearly as anonymous as you think.

  43. lunar2013 says:
    Sep 7, 2015 2:24 PM

    So the NFL thinks a Federal Judge will risk his career over a deflated football case?

    Really?

    And the NFL is risking a lot by insinuating malfeasance by a federal judge when such judges colleagues will hear the appeal. Boy that NFL office is sure an airtight environment, huh?

  44. So let me get this straight, from some of the comments here…the Patriots knew all along that this was going to end up in the courtroom of a judge that would be on the take and would overturn the NFL’s ruling, even though the NFL picked their own venue in an anticipatory move against the NFLPA filing elsewhere.

    Wow. And they say us Patriots fans are delusional conspiracy theorists…

  45. ronnyw9 says:
    Sep 7, 2015 2:34 PM

    How did the Patriots explain the firing of equipment guys if there was no wrong doing??? That alone shows guilt. If they aren’t guilty those guys should get their jobs back. Any judge with no connections should have asked himself that question. But then again he’s tied to Kraft somehow. Scumbags all the way around.

    ———-

    The only thing that shows guilt is actual evidence. Opinions on other events that happened doesn’t show innocence or guilt or anything else. No judge could even consider who fired the equipment guys and why. That is completely irrelevant in the case against Brady which was related to the players CBA.

    As for public opinion… Regardless of why they were fired, it was stated by the NFL that the equipment guys cannot have their jobs back unless it is approved by the NFL which means that the NFL want them to be suspended right now.

    The Patriot will eventually ask to have them reinstated as they recently said, but I am sure the answer will be ‘no’ from the NFL.

    I am sure we will find out as soon as the Patriots ask.

  46. Well obviously this case of possibly deflated footballs in a blow out game is the biggest most important case this judge has been involved with in his 17 years so if ever he was going to risk being dirty this would be the case.
    Please move on people.The NFL botched this from the get go.The blame for all of this belongs to them.Not Brady and not judge Berman. Kensil,Vincent and Pash were the dirty ones and Goodell is just the dumb one.

  47. dccrescenzi says:
    Sep 7, 2015 2:34 PM

    Stupid is as stupid does .Questioning the integrity of a sitting federal judge in the same circuit in which you seek redress is either the height of stupidity or the height of hubris.
    _____________________________

    It’s both, and since you are dealing with the NFL front office staff and Goodell you can toss in “is the reaction of small minded, petty miscreants.”

  48. I know it is protocol to have Berman involved in the next step of the proceedings. But with findings like this coming out. He should be out of the equation all together.

  49. It’s still apparent most posters have not read anything but the headlines! On page 9 of his 40 page decision, Judge Berman quotes Vincent ‘s letter regarding the 2 equipment guys who can’t return to work.
    On page 7 he quotes in BOLD type from the Wells/pash report the uncertainty that there was tampering!!

    Most telling is when the NFL admits to Judge Berman they have NO evidence against Tom.

  50. While I fully side on this probably being nothing but a coincidence. I do find some rich irony in New England fans saying that this is nothing because it’s been years since these two have known each other. However they claim, non-stop, that Goodell is a Jets shill because he was an intern for them, for less than a year, back in 1983.

  51. With each story “floated by the NFL” and carried by the media, especially ESPN, I am losing interest in the NFL. Already I have stopped watching ESPN, listening to ESPN via Serius XM, unliked NFL on social media-the list goes on. With this story, I am removing the NFL app from my phone.

  52. ronnyw9, the NFL forced the Patriots to suspend those two, it wasn’t the team’s call. They also need the NFL’s permission to re-instate them.

  53. “swagger52 says:
    Sep 7, 2015 2:12 PM
    Typical NE blow-hard hypocrite. He doesn’t think Ted Wells can be independent, yet he can be independent after mingling at party with Kraft.”

    You understand that the NFL was literally paying Wells, and Kraft never met Berman until AFTER the verdict.

    Does your brain really work this way?

    ________________________

    Berman and Walt Coleman have a lot more parties to attend after their judgments.

    Does your brain really work at all?

  54. A chance encounter huh? Everything is just one big misunderstanding. A guy named The Deflator, no more fumbles, busted up phone.

  55. I haven’t seen anything suggesting Berman’s private political views had any bearing on this whatsoever. The issue is that the league’s employees can’t close their eyes and touch their noses without guided directions and a 30-minute head start. They had dozens of chances to handle this like adults, and instead they escalate it every time. It’s like watching people that secretly know they deserve to be fired, and are throwing their weight around to disguise their insecurities. Just quit already.

  56. Wasn’t it the NFL that said it was going to hire Columbia to advise as to ball pressure science but instead went to the group (Exponent) that gave Big Tobacco the second-hand smoke defense?

    Smear Brady.

    Smear Berman.

    The NFL is despicable.

  57. The whining from the NFL, the New Yorkers, ESPN, the Colts and the Ravens has become so pathetic through this farce. How can ANY of these entities have ANY credibility when they all have an ax to grind and a beef against the Patriots? It’ll be that much sweeter to stick it to all the haters if the Pats run the table this year. So much jealousy out there of winners. So sad.

  58. If Kraft and Berman were involved in some nefarious back-channel activity, surely they wouldn’t do it front of hundreds of media persons?
    Isn’t that the worst possible setting for a meet-up?

  59. Judge Berman was born and spent most of his life in and around New York city.
    If that isn’t proof that he’s a…..New England fan, I don’t know what is.

    Would it look equally suspicious that the Giants co-owner
    was at the party, if the NFL had won the case?
    Because the Giants owners were all in for the NFL against Brady case. Think, people.

    Both Kraft and Berman have separate contacts in the media world.
    This wasn’t Kraft’s party.

  60. Hypocrite just like Kraft. The court system botches the OJ Simpson trial because of shoddy work done by the investigation team. Yet the court system is fine to criticize the NFL for shoddy work done on the investigation – as if Berman would know what cheating was and the impact more than Goodell.

  61. “he likely presided over multiple cases” likely? What does that mean ” Likely” sounds “likely” Kraft is Breman’s buddy! There’s your “Smoking Gun” all you Pat fans have been crying about! Your Knuckle headed, Corrupt owner had his Righthand man as the Judge,Juror and Executioner on the Federal level! Wow, not good! Kraft and Berman should be looking at some jail time?

  62. Hilarious that the league would claim conflict of interest with an arbitrarily selected federal judge when the commissioner appoints himself as judge, juror and executioner over major CBA cases. That moron of a commissioner gave Ray Rice 2 games for punching a woman in the face and dragging her unconscious body from an elevator AFTER seeing the video taken in the elevator. Good luck trying to avoid public scrutiny on every single case from now on!

  63. It is not the job of the NFL to have to prove without doubt that Brady cheated. Brady destroyed evidence, the ball boys were not put on the witness stand, etc.. Corrupt Berman was paid off to insert his justice in something that he knows nothing about. This is going to make things more difficult for everybody else after Brady. This is just like the tuck rule.

  64. If only the NFL after admitting they did not understand how temperature impacts balls, had said we will put the penalties on hold and test balls during the next season and then affirm or exonerate the patriots we wouldn’t be in this position.

    But they didn’t , they decided to release 11 out of 12 balls under 2 Psig, putting it in every ones head that no doubt the balls were tampered with.

    Then only if wells report was amended to include any texts or calls from the 28 people Brady provided the NFL during the appeal.

    But Noooooo

  65. The NFL chose the venue. If they didn’t like the judge they got try have no-one to blame but themselves.

    If you mess with the big dogs you get bit.

    🙂

  66. This guy Hubbuch is like the rest of the consipiracy theorists–maybe worse. The “interesting factual nugget” was not interesting or concerning. He’s just trying to stir up controversy, when again, there is none.

  67. ihavenoeyedeer says:
    Sep 7, 2015 3:21 PM
    It would be funny if Judge Berman heard the NFL’s appeal of his decision.
    ======

    If the NFL wins it’s appeal with the Second Circuit in New York, the case would be most likely “reversed and remanded”, which means it would be returned to Berman’s court for a retrial.

  68. The job of the NFL is to create entertainment on an even field of play. It is not their job to substantiate justice in a courtroom for all the players. Walt Berman decides NOT to blow up the CBA, but only that it was too harsh on Tom Brady. In other words, screw the black players who might be punsihed, but Brady that is different rules.

  69. “It’s unclear whether Tisch and Berman mingled or exchanged pleasantries or otherwise engaged in any behavior that someone could have used as convoluted evidence of corruption if the NFL had managed to win last week.”
    __________________________

    What’s unclear is why you would think Tisch mingling with Berman would be viewed as corruption. Mara, not Tisch, is the chairman of the NFL Management Council. Tisch would be no greater influence on the judge than Jerry Jones.

  70. The court system botches the OJ Simpson trial because of shoddy work done by the investigation team. Yet the court system is fine to criticize the NFL for shoddy work done on the investigation…
    ===

    “The court system” didn’t botch the OJ trial. The LAPD did, because the LAPD screwed up the investigation. The “court system” worked exactly as its supposed to. Similarly, the court system worked exactly as its supposed to here. If you try to prosecute someone and you mangle the investigation, then you cannot expect the prosecution to succeed, nor can you expect the courts to uphold any verdict that depends on the mangled prosecution.

  71. For those of you that continue to claim the Patriots fired the two equipment guys. That is wrong. They were ordered to suspend them by the NFL.
    Also do you even know that the excerpt of a text conversation between these two guys were the word deflator came up was from May of 2014. It was also a conversation that was over 20 text messages long regarding a party they were going to attend that day. The NFL conveniently only showed you 4 lines of the exchange which was done to make both look guilty. Also why didn’t the Wells report have anything in it regarding the interview it conducted with Jastremski. Probably because there was nothing and he explained the text exchange which they don’t want you to see because they wanted to nail the Patriots.
    The Wells report also left out other messages of text conversations between the two that changed the tenor of the printed conversation on the Wells report. This was nothing but a corrupt railroad job by the NFL.

  72. ikeclanton says:
    Sep 7, 2015 3:27 PM

    This guy Hubbuch is like the rest of the consipiracy theorists–maybe worse. The “interesting factual nugget” was not interesting or concerning. He’s just trying to stir up controversy, when again, there is none.

    ————–

    True… but if it is perceived by the 2nd circuit judges that the NFL has anything to do with poking holes in the Judges background I don’t think it will not be favorable for the NFL.

  73. ikeclanton says:
    Sep 7, 2015 3:27 PM

    This guy Hubbuch is like the rest of the consipiracy theorists–maybe worse. The “interesting factual nugget” was not interesting or concerning. He’s just trying to stir up controversy, when again, there is none.

    ————–

    True… but if it is perceived by the 2nd circuit judges that the NFL has anything to do with poking holes in the Judges background I don’t think it will not be favorable for the NFL.

    ———-

    Meant, “I don’t think it will be favorable for the NFL”

  74. The job of the NFL is to create entertainment on an even field of play. It is not their job to substantiate justice in a courtroom for all the players. Walt Berman decides NOT to blow up the CBA, but only that it was too harsh on Tom Brady. In other words, screw the black players who might be punsihed, but Brady that is different rules.
    ===
    Uh… No. That’s not what was held at all. The main holding by judge RICHARD Berman was that the NFL gave no notice – thus it acted outside the CBA. Additionally, it violated 9 U.S. C. § 10(a)(2) and 9 U.S. C. § 10(a)(3).

    And you know that several black players have had their suspensions overturned or reduced due to due process issues, to right?

  75. floratiotime says:
    Sep 7, 2015 1:59 PM
    So it turns out the judge was a buddy of Kraft. You’ve got to hand it to that organization. They’re dirty top to bottom.

    ————-
    Did you bother to read the article? They’re not buddies, they were introduced at a party….at which one of the co-owners of the Giants was also at……next you’ll be saying that Kraft brazenly handed Berman an envelope stuffed with cash in full view of another owner and the press! This borders on ridiculous.

  76. dccrescenzi says:
    Sep 7, 2015 2:34 PM
    Stupid is as stupid does .Questioning the integrity of a sitting federal judge in the same circuit in which you seek redress is either the height of stupidity or the height of hubris.
    ————————————-
    I hope you’re not discounting the very real possibility that it could be BOTH stupidity and hubris.

  77. “The court system” didn’t botch the OJ trial. The LAPD did, because the LAPD screwed up the investigation. The “court system” worked exactly as its supposed to. Similarly, the court system worked exactly as its supposed to here. If you try to prosecute someone and you mangle the investigation, then you cannot expect the prosecution to succeed, nor can you expect the courts to uphold any verdict that depends on the mangled prosecution.

    _______

    Wrong the Court System and the LAPD work together to protect citizens. The police are trained and get paid to not botch evidence, etc. Nobody in the NFL is paid to collect evidence on Brady cheating. Yet Berman wants to hold the NFL to some standard that he and his group botch? The NFL had a CBA that gave Goodell judgement and discretion. It did not say..Goodell has judgement and discretion, except if the Patriots get penalized then the evidence must be there even if Brady destroys it.

  78. lukedunphysscienceproject says:
    Sep 7, 2015 3:26 PM
    Hmm….Let’s see, I am a Federal Judge who has built a long and distinguished career on my integrity.

    But, hey! Robert Kraft said hi to me at a party! No way I am ruling against THAT guy!

    —————–
    There’s the problem–as Goodell and his minions have no concept of integrity, they cannot imagine anyone actually having any.

  79. Never occurred to Walt Berman that socializing with Kraft would look bad….hmmm..to most people that is common sense. However, most people don’t realize how arrogant and corrupt these judges are.

  80. The point is the system is set up for due process with appeals to help offset an individual judge’s bias. It’s ironic that Brady’s main defense was lack of due process yet the world wants the NFL to stop their appeal and declare Brady the “victor.” We all knew this would wind up in the courts so let’s let it play out in appeals behind the scenes and we’ll eventually find out which side the law is actually on.

  81. swagger52 says:
    Sep 7, 2015 3:47 PM
    Never occurred to Walt Berman that socializing with Kraft would look bad….hmmm..to most people that is common sense. However, most people don’t realize how arrogant and corrupt these judges are.
    ——————————
    Why do you keep referring to him as Walt? His name is Richard Berman. Kraft probably didn’t know that Berman was going to be at the party and probably Berman didn’t know that Kraft was going to be there…..do you know everyone who will be at parties you’re invited to——-if you’ve ever been invited to one, that is?

  82. If Roger Goodell seriously wants to realize his well known ambitions for elective office in New York, I’d advise him to dispense with the “judicial activism” rhetoric. That sort of right-wing pap is anathema to the average New Yorker.

    Poor Charles Goodell must be spinning like a helicopter rotor in his grave. His son has turned out nothing like him (an honourable public servant of the old patrician class), but more like the lunatic who defeated him, “brother” James Buckley.

  83. I sure hope someone has given notice to Judge Berman that taking money/gifts from parties in his court could subject him to a suspension. We wouldn’t want him to only find out later like Brady that cheating can lead to a suspension.

  84. Everyone brace yourselves for the NFL Public Relations machine.

    If the NFL Office was in charge of Watergate…Nixon would still be president.

    Goodell should be fired just for the reason of hiring the bafoons around him.

    Again, get ready for the PR machine!!

  85. I think the NFL commissioner, the NFL disciplinarian, and the NFL arbiter are friends.

    Someone should look into that.

    Maybe the NFL should do an investigation and use an independent lawyer so it’s fair. I wonder if Ted Well$ is busy. He probably needs another yacht.

  86. stealthjunk says:
    Sep 7, 2015 4:18 PM

    I sure hope someone has given notice to Judge Berman that taking money/gifts from parties in his court could subject him to a suspension. We wouldn’t want him to only find out later like Brady that cheating can lead to a suspension.
    ——————————–

    I wouldn’t put it past the NFL to try it. Everyone already knows they have no scruples.

  87. I bet had the judge upheld Brady’s suspension and it was Roger Goodell who happened to rub into Judge Berman, the tone of this story would be completely different as would the comnents.

  88. craigruby20 says:
    Sep 7, 2015 3:49 PM

    The point is the system is set up for due process with appeals to help offset an individual judge’s bias. It’s ironic that Brady’s main defense was lack of due process yet the world wants the NFL to stop their appeal and declare Brady the “victor.” We all knew this would wind up in the courts so let’s let it play out in appeals behind the scenes and we’ll eventually find out which side the law is actually on.
    ———————————

    No one wants to deny the NFL their due process, they all just think it is a colossal waste of time and money, since they literally have no case.

  89. swagger52 says:
    Sep 7, 2015 2:13 PM
    I bet Jastremski wasn’t at that party
    ______________________________________
    Wrong again swagg. Jastremski threw the party. You know, a sort of entrance party to his new high society friends after coming into his new found fortune. Geez, are you saying you weren’t invited? Pity, it was fun.

  90. If I was an owner of an NFL team I would be insisting that several people in the NFL offices be fired right now. They’re acting like children who didn’t get their way after they acted like children while trying to get their way. This league needs adults running it who are both intelligent and impartial. That’s not what they have right now.

  91. The irony to this is that it was the NFL who filed to have the case “confirmed” by a New York district court. Trying to beat the NFLPA to the appeal courts. And Judge Berman was a random pick from a pool of Judges…LOL, NFL….now your gonna whine about it. Oh, who deflated the Colts footballs as it was documented in the Wells Report? Is that why they stopped measuring all 12…and they only measured 4 of the Colts footballs, because the realized that the Colts footballs were deflated too???? 3 of the 4 were below the sacred 12.5 PSI..Did Andrew Luck cheat too? He must have known….

  92. Never occurred to Walt Berman that socializing with Kraft would look bad….hmmm..to most people that is common sense. However, most people don’t realize how arrogant and corrupt these judges are.
    ===
    It has already been pointed out by Daniel Wallach that Richard Berman’s actions are well within the applicable codes of ethics. You may go read his tweets on the subject if you wish.

  93. I sure hope someone has given notice to Judge Berman that taking money/gifts from parties in his court could subject him to a suspension. We wouldn’t want him to only find out later like Brady that cheating can lead to a suspension.
    ===
    I’m sure the Federal Judge is well aware of his ethical responsibilities and guidelines.

    For what it’s worth: Kraft is actually an NFL owner and on the NFL Management Council, so he technically lost the recent lawsuit before Berman and is appealing it.

  94. Wrong the Court System and the LAPD work together to protect citizens.
    ===
    If you believe that, then there’s no point in trying to explain it to you.

  95. Wrong again swagg. Jastremski threw the party. You know, a sort of entrance party to his new high society friends after coming into his new found fortune. Geez, are you saying you weren’t invited? Pity, it was fun.
    ===
    Yeah. Everyone from the 501st Legion of the New England Internet Warriors was there. It was fun because we won.

  96. Anyone that takes this as a serious story reveals a lot about themselves. This is one of those “ok, the trolls are self-identifying” stories…

  97. Seriously you people are going to question the integrity of a federal judge simply because he wouldn’t join in your witch hunt. Trust me down the line the Mortensens Kensils, Goodells and Hubbuchs Grigsons Harbaughs Irsays et al will have heck to pay when this explodes even more in their faces.

  98. At lunch, some guy called Grigson reliably told me that about 10 years ago, he once saw the kid of one of Berman’s friends wearing uggs! Hello? What more solid proof do you need of a connection people?? Brady will walk because of those uggs…

  99. You people need to STOP using false/wrong/disproven “facts” to make your case. It makes us all dumber for being forced to read your comments. The equipment guy and ball boy HAVE NOT BEEN FIRED. They have been suspended, at the request of the NFL. They must receive NFL approval before they can return to work.

    If you have a beef with the Pats, that’s one thing, but when the entire basis for your argument against them is on untruths, what the hell is the point?!?! I am in favor of discussion, but it’s a waste of time when your statement proves you are incapable of simple understanding, or just completely biased against them.

  100. Every NFL broadcast should start out with the following:

    We have invited Roger Goodell on the set to be interviewed to address the Tom Brady framejob and the Commissioner has declined our request.

    But dont forget he is available to the media every day of the week.

  101. Bush bombed the twin towers, UFO crash in roswell was a weather balloon, Holocaust was a hoax, moon landing never happened and Bob Kraft paid off Berman. Let the conspiracy theories run rampant. People across the Country hate the Patriots so much that they will now believe in anything.

  102. I really have no question of Judge Berman’s integrity. I just thought it was a bad ruling. May still turn out to be; I don’t know.
    It isn’t over yet, and may not be for some time. We shall see.

  103. Has it ever occurred to anyone that Goodell may be intentionally botching these cases because he’s receiving payoffs from the owners who are in question but needs to save face in front of the other owners so he has to do something to make it look like he’s trying to succeed. I seriously down it’s coincidental that the one man in charge of heading entire NFL can lose 6 Consecutive Federal Court cases involving their players.

    It’s as simple as a magician slide-of-hand. Everyone’s looking at corrupt judges or faulty cases but nobody’s looking at Roger Goodell, then to talk about his incompetence. Maybe he isn’t as incompetent as everyone thinks and is just playing a part in which nobody would ever suspect.

  104. Raider, what no one gives Goodell credit for is that he has kept all these investigations out of the Feds hands to begin with. He has opened the doors to the public. Let’s be honest, players just didn’t start beating their wives or girlfriends since Goodell became commissioner. I am sure there have been deflategate and bountygates that were all dealt with behind closed doors.

  105. Ncl, I agree. I think the judge made a bad ruling and I believe it will be overturned. I don’t question his integrity. I just think he is wrong. He made calls that were not his to make.

  106. Every time the Patriots are mentioned I will tell the youth of America about the team most penalized for cheating. Then tell them they can look it up to see the fines paid and the Draft choices lost.

  107. Goodell is a bigger Moron than I thought, Try and get a lawyer to sue another lawyer NEVER Happens, Slandering a Federal Judge Will POISON the Well in every court case the NFL is in!

  108. Whew! Just when it seemed that the haters had nothing left, out comes this tidbit. I really thought all the people that have sounded ridiculous with their ” concrete evidence” argument would slowly fade away into their padded rooms. You haters will now grasp at anything, you are starting to look like Goodell junkies. I’ve witnessed drug addicts scouring their carpet on their hands and knees, hoping to find just a little bit that will make them feel better. That’s what I visualize when i try to picture the haters commenting. You have passed the point of being uninformed fools and are now teetering on the edge of complete and total lunacy. At every turn of this fiasco, you guaranteed victory for Goodell and were proven wrong. Although your unequaled stupidity has been entertaining, please stop. I’ve seen dogs that people claimed are so ugly that they’re cute. Unfortunately, haters will never be so stupid they’re smart. One last thing, being the smartest person in a room full of morons does not mean you’re actually smart.

  109. Aww, the big bad everyone is out to get the widdle NFL! They’re always picking on the NFL!

    Hey guys, when you’re shot down and lose EVERY… SINGLE… TIME that a real, Federal Judge looks at your case, maybe… just maybe, you need to hire new lawyers for yourself. Of if your lawyers are actively advising you to NOT do the things that you keep doing, you need to stop ignoring them. You pay them millions of dollars a year and what have you reaped from it? You lost the free agency case. You lost the concussion case. You lost the bountygate case (oveturned by Tagliabue). You essentially lost the StarCaps case in that the players involved delayed their suspensions for years, and they had already lost in the court of public opinion.

    Troy Vincent is not a lawyer. He’s an ex-player. He’s not stupid, but he’s also not particularly intelligent, either. Why is he making decisions on things like this over someone with actual contract law experience?

  110. Roger’s paid posters are out in force again today. Maybe the same people smearing the judge are the ones who came up with the 11 of 12 balls being 2lbs underinflated. Scumbags.

  111. I thought Goodell and the NFL looked arrogant when they thought that they were bigger than the game, the players, the teams employees and all the fans. Now we have come to find out that they believe they are bigger than the entire United States judicial system. That’s not arrogant, its borderline mentally disabled ( no disrespect to the mentally disabled intended).

    I guess the only way the NFL can get a fair judge is if Goodell himself is appointed to the SCOTUS. The laws need to be changed to say that judges must never leave the courthouse and they should not be able to talk to anyone socially.

    I would imagine that this seals the deal for Brady, no judge is going to side with anything that wages a PR war against another judge. Tread lightly, Rodger, although a long shot, if Brady decides to seek damages from the defamatory way in which he was treated, you don’t want to be known as the guy that tries to smears judges reputations. Plus there is that exception that the league receives from anti trust laws. Certainly don’t want to lose the support of government, it could ruin you and the league.

  112. redsghost says:
    Sep 7, 2015 6:04 PM
    Swagger52 isn’t even aware that Judge Berman’s first name is NOT Walt, but Richard. LOL

    ___________________

    Swagger is aware. Swagger has changed his name to Walt Berman to draw the comparison with this case and the tuck rule. Berman just like Coleman – made up his own rules that we all must now suffer thru for 10+ years.

  113. TomcheatGOAT says:
    Sep 7, 2015 5:08 PM

    Check Bermans bank account for large deposit. My god the optics on NE are just sad
    —————————-

    The optics? Huh?

  114. greymares says:
    Sep 7, 2015 8:37 PM

    Every time the Patriots are mentioned I will tell the youth of America about the team most penalized for cheating. Then tell them they can look it up to see the fines paid and the Draft choices lost.
    ——————————-

    What do the Broncos have to do with anything?

  115. I have a friend who lives in NJ. He has a friend who was there. His sources said that Kraft’s staff put out invites to important people from all walks. Kraft invited many but not all. The Judge was invited to this soiree BEFORE the court proceeding per my source. Kraft didn’t even know he’d be there. They saw each other Kraft thanked the judge for being fair they said something like nice weather and split apart. No one saw them together again. OK haters have at it with your lies

  116. swagger52 says:
    Sep 7, 2015 10:04 PM

    Swagger is aware. Swagger has changed his name to Walt Berman to draw the comparison with this case and the tuck rule. Berman just like Coleman – made up his own rules that we all must now suffer thru for 10+ years.
    ———————————-

    The tuck rule again? Can’t you bozos ever get over anything?

    You’d think that someone that idolizes Ray Lewis, a murderer, could, but I guess not.

  117. mmack66 says:
    Sep 7, 2015 10:46 PM
    swagger52 says:
    Sep 7, 2015 10:04 PM

    Swagger is aware. Swagger has changed his name to Walt Berman to draw the comparison with this case and the tuck rule. Berman just like Coleman – made up his own rules that we all must now suffer thru for 10+ years.
    ———————————-

    The tuck rule again? Can’t you bozos ever get over anything?

    You’d think that someone that idolizes Ray Lewis, a murderer, could, but I guess not.

    __________________

    Frankly, I don’t care about Ray Lewis off the field. I will never know Ray Lewis off the field any more than you will know Brady off the field. Ray was charged and served penalty for the only thing they had on him, which was obstruction of justice. However, that was OFF the field. Brady cheated the game ON the field, and he obstructed justice ON the field, yet he gets nothing! The off the field only matters to you because you have this false sainthood of cheater Brady. Everybody else cares about Brady even less now because he is a cheater.

  118. swagger52 says:
    Sep 7, 2015 11:04 PM

    Frankly, I don’t care about Ray Lewis off the field. I will never know Ray Lewis off the field any more than you will know Brady off the field. Ray was charged and served penalty for the only thing they had on him, which was obstruction of justice. However, that was OFF the field. Brady cheated the game ON the field, and he obstructed justice ON the field, yet he gets nothing! The off the field only matters to you because you have this false sainthood of cheater Brady. Everybody else cares about Brady even less now because he is a cheater.
    —————————-

    Lawl. Whatever you need to tell yourself to make it through the day.

    The bottom line is, you idolize a murderer.

    When it gets to the point that a Ray “Murderer” Lewis idolator is casting aspersions on a Federal judge, you know the haters have hit rock bottom.

  119. Same old, same old for Pats fans. It’s become comical how much our team lives inside the heads of other fans, franchises, and even the league. Just unreal how of the reservation people are about the Pats.

  120. swagger52 says:
    Sep 7, 2015 2:13 PM
    I bet Jastremski wasn’t at that party
    ____

    Only three more days until you can start losing money betting against the Pats this year. Too bad your gambling problem has you in such a tizzy about at all this.

  121. Haha! People at a party,say hi,gee that’s an odd tradition! And a judge that was randomly given the case out of a pool,wow.above comment is spot on,”haters have hit rock bottom”.Haha

  122. Do you people actually READ or just look at the pretty pictures? ““It was a chance encounter at a social event with hundreds of guests, There was a brief introduction and an exchange of pleasantries that lasted no more than a couple of minutes.”

    To those that say it was a bag job, do you actually think that these two established men, highly respected in their fields, would actually be DUMB enough to say “Hey, let’s meet at a party being attended by hundreds of people, so there are as many eyes on us as possible, so we can hash out some sort of game plan to get Brady off!”. You conspiracy theorists are hysterical. Bottom line is NFL had nothing, Brady wins and rightfully so and all you whiners can keep crying in your fruit loops knowing that he is going to lay a beating on your team in the very near future. Booo Hooo Hoo!

  123. The NFL has, for all intents and purposes, admitted they did NOT run an independent investigation, that reason alone should be reason to fire Goodell. Why would the NFL want anything but the truth in this matter????? They had nothing to gain or lose by the truth coming out and yet they created a scenario where the Patriots and Brady were guilty without any proof of wrong doing….#FIRE GOODELL.

  124. limakey says:
    Sep 7, 2015 5:37 PM

    The NFL had a very good chance winning on appeal.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Wrong. Every analysis has said it is a very long shot that the court of appeals will remand Judge Berman’s decision. The facts, laws, and sections of the CBA that he used in his decision are all very solid.

    But even if the 3 judge appeal court does remand it, it just goes back to Berman for his reconsideration. Based on the way Berman framed the final couple of paragraphs in his decision (well worth reading the whole thing, by the way), it appears that he would welcome that as he will really be able to dig into the inherent inequities of the CBA contract, and will also be able to consider the facts (or lack of any) that made up the Wells Report which resulted in the initial NFL penalties, which he did not feel he needed to go into in the first decison.

  125. Well, I’m a liberal and I think Judge Berman is full of BS. The league doesn’t run the league, the players do.

  126. They don’t need to find any connections. Its obvious. Just like its obvious that Brady didn’t destroy his phone because thats a habit of his. Just like a guy doesn’t call himself the deflator because of losing weight. Just like weather doesn’t suddenly cause footballs from one team to lose 1.5 pounds of pressure in a half of football. Just like how we all know that Tom Brady isn’t ignorant to how footballs even get to the game. I mean really. What part of this is confusing to anyone not living in Boston?

  127. This activist, tempestuous judge Richard M. Berman is a Senior United States federal judge of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York and well know for his erratic, emotionally charged, often unbalanced judicial decisions. But that’s ok since he’s a left wing leaning liberal Democrat. It’s ironic that this Judge Berman reminds me of the Judge in Franz Kafka’s “The Trial…” It was Lord Acton who said that “Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely…” That statement describes Judge Berman and his buddy Bob Kraft, Tom Brady and all the New England Patriots…who seems to be giddy and drunk with power and their perceived invincibility…

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