In 2011, a court ruled that former Duke basketball star Christian Laettner and his partner/former Duke teammate Brian Davis had to pay former NFL linebacker Shawne Merriman almost $4 million after defaulting on a loan that Merriman had extended to the duo to help finance a real estate project.
The Charlotte Observer reports that two other NFL players are now seeking repayment from Laettner and they’ve joined other creditors to start involuntary bankruptcy proceedings against him. Panthers running back Jonathan Stewart says he is owed $3,629,230 and former Lions, Eagles, Colts and Cowboys linebacker Ernie Sims is seeking $1,482,730 as part of a total of $14.05 million being sought by a group of five creditors.
A company that lists Laettner as a partner received $28.3 million in proceeds from the sale of a mixed-use project in Durham, North Carolina and Laettner’s lawyer Hassan Zavareei said they hope to use some of that money to satisfy his client’s outstanding debts.
“We are optimistic that the funds from the sale of the West Village can be used to reach a global resolution with all of Christian’s creditors,” Zavareei said. “As such, the negotiations are ongoing.”
Whether those negotiations avoid further bankruptcy proceedings or not, it might be time for NFL players to find different places to invest their money.