Upper Deck took more shots in the courtroom on Monday, but even though the case involves one of the NBA’s iconic players, these weren’t the basketball kind. An attorney for Kareem Abdul-Jabbar said they tried to settle the case out of court but Upper Deck didn’t have anyone with authority on hand to make the deal. The judge in the case also expressed frustration with the trading card maker.
At a pre-trial hearing before L.A. Superior Court Judge Michael Linfield, Attorney John Gaule, representing Abdul-Jabbar, said Upper Deck’s Chief Executive Officer Richard McWilliam didn’t show up for the settlement conference with another judge last Thursday. Upper Deck sent someone else instead.
It was the latest in a lawsuit that’s been a bit of a circus.
Last month, Abdul-Jabbar’s representatives accused McWilliam of showing up under the influence during a scheduled deposition, which was then postponed.
Judge Linfield said he was “getting increasingly concerned about Mr. McWilliam’s lack of serious participation in this process.”
Abdul-Jabbar is suing because he claimsUpper Deck didn’t have the right to include him in its ‘Greats of the Game’ set in 2010 since his agreement with the company had expired. Upper Deck claims it had every right to use college photos of the ex-UCLA and Lakers’ great.
The case is scheduled to go to trial next week, according to this story, which has more comments from the judge and lawyers.