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#pounditTuesday, November 30, 2021

Legal Matters

Deshaun Watson’s agent suggests women are lying

Deshaun Watson

A total of seven sexual assault lawsuits have been filed against Deshaun Watson, and the Houston Texans quarterback’s agent issued a response to the allegations on Friday.

Watson’s agent David Mulugheta sent a tweet shortly after four new lawsuits were filed against his client, bringing the total to seven. Mulugheta implied that the alleged victims are taking part in an organized money grab.

Tony Buzbee, the attorney representing the women who are suing Watson, says there are a total of nine victims. All of the allegations are related to Watson receiving massages. Buzbee shared screenshots of text messages on social media Thursday that claim to show Watson apologizing for making one of the massage therapists feel uncomfortable. You can see the text messages here.

Mulugheta has had a busy offseason with Watson, as he is also trying to help the Pro Bowler force his way out of Houston. The agent ripped the Texans in a tweet earlier this offseason that he later deleted.

Watson adamantly denied the allegations after news of the first lawsuit surfaced on Tuesday and said he is looking forward to clearing his name.

Four more sexual assault lawsuits filed against Deshaun Watson

Deshaun Watson

Deshaun Watson is now facing a total of seven sexual assault lawsuits, and at least two more are expected in the coming days.

Four more sexual assault lawsuits have been filed against Watson, according to ESPN’s Sarah Barshop. Tony Buzbee, the attorney representing the alleged victims, has said there will be nine total cases against Watson that all include similar allegations.

All of the suits are civil in nature, and it’s unclear at this point if law enforcement is planning to get involved. Houston police declined to comment to ESPN when asked if they are investigating any of the allegations against Watson.

Watson adamantly denied the allegations after news of the first lawsuit surfaced on Tuesday and said he is looking forward to clearing his name. The Houston Texans quarterback has not issued further comment as the cases continue to pile up.

Buzbee shared some screenshots of text messages on social media Thursday that claim to show Watson apologizing to a masseuse for making her feel uncomfortable. You can see the alleged conversations here.

The NFL is investigating the claims, and it’s possible Watson could face disciplinary action even though the suits are civil.

One of the women who is suing Watson says she was forced to perform oral sex on the quarterback. You can see the details from the one of the latest lawsuits here.

Deshaun Watson text messages allegedly show QB apologizing to masseuse

Deshaun Watson

The attorney representing the alleged victims in several lawsuits against Deshaun Watson shared some screenshots of text messages on Thursday, and he feels the texts will help prove that the Houston Texans quarterback is guilty.

Tony Buzbee, who represents three women who have filed lawsuits against Watson, posted the screenshots on Instagram. In one of them, Watson allegedly apologizes to a woman who gave him a massage for making her feel uncomfortable. The other claims to show Watson asking a masseuse if she is “comfortable with the glute area.”

You can see the exchanges below:

Buzbee said in his Instagram post that he will be releasing more text messages on Friday.

The messages, if legitimate, hardly incriminate Watson. Apologizing for making someone feel uncomfortable is not an admission of sexual assault, but Buzbee indicated the screenshots are just a sample of what he has.

There have been three lawsuits filed against Watson, but Buzbee says there are several more women with similar allegations. The NFL is investigating the claims, and it’s possible Watson could face disciplinary action even though the suits are civil in nature.

One of the women who is suing Watson says she was forced to perform oral sex on the quarterback. You can see the details from the latest lawsuit here.

Kellen Winslow II being sued over disturbing gym incident

Kellen Winslow

Kellen Winslow II was recently sentenced to 14 years in prison for multiple charges related to sexual assault and rape. The former NFL tight end is now also being sued by one of his victims.

An elderly woman who accused Winslow of lewd conduct at a gym in 2019 has filed a civil lawsuit against Winslow, according to TMZ. The suit lays out some of the graphic allegations against Winslow, which contributed to his 14-year jail sentence.

The victim, who was 77 at the time, said she was working out at the Crunch Carlsbad fitness center in Southern California on Feb. 13, 2019, when Winslow exposed himself to her and asked, “Do you see this, do you like it?” The woman says she immediately ran to find her husband and left the gym.

Less than two weeks later, the victim says she had another encounter with Winslow in the hot tub of the fitness center. Winslow allegedly got into the hot tub with the woman and rubbed her leg and arm without consent.

The woman is suing Winslow for unspecified damages, claiming she has “suffered and continues to suffer great pain of mind and body, shock, [and] emotional distress.”

Winslow, the son of Hall of Famer Kellen Winslow, was drafted No. 6 overall by the Cleveland Browns in 2004. He played nine seasons in the NFL. He was also found guilty of raping a homeless woman in 2019, among other disturbing incidents.

Attorney claims he has six lawsuits against Deshaun Watson to be filed

Deshaun Watson

The sexual assault lawsuit filed against Deshaun Watson on Tuesday may just be the start of further legal issues for the quarterback.

Attorney Tony Buzbee, who shared on Tuesday that he had filed a suit against the Houston Texans quarterback, says he has more suits coming.

In an initial post on social media Wednesday, Buzbee said he was filing the second of four cases “on behalf of women against Deshaun Watson.” Several hours later, Buzbee said he had filed the third of now six cases against Watson.

“Our staff has received numerous calls. We screen each one, and I personally talk with and screen any individual on whose behalf we file,” Buzbee said.

The accusations and lawsuits come amid what has been a contentious offseason between Watson and the Texans. Watson is seeking a trade from the team and reportedly is willing to miss games. The Texans have been adamant that they will not trade Watson.

You can read the details of the first lawsuit here.

Attorney Tony Buzbee claims to have been Cal McNair’s neighbor

Deshaun Watson

A sexual assault lawsuit was brought against Deshaun Watson this week, and many are questioning whether the attorney in the case has a direct link to the Houston Texans.

Tony Buzbee revealed in a lengthy Facebook post on Tuesday that he and an alleged victim have filed a lawsuit against Watson. Buzbee’s client reportedly claims Watson was getting a massage from a woman who says “Watson went too far.” After Buzbee went public about the suit, it was discovered that he once claimed to be the neighbor of Texans owner Cal McNair.

When Johnny Manziel was coming out of college at Texas A&M, Buzbee paid for several billboards in the Houston area urging the Texans to draft the quarterback. Buzbee recently posted on Instagram reminiscing about the billboards. He referred to McNair as “my neighbor” in the post.

That connection will almost certainly be of interest to Watson and his legal representatives. Watson has already issued a response to the lawsuit, but he did not go into detail about the allegations. You can see his response here.

Of course, there are now questions about whether the Texans are behind the lawsuit. One line of thought is that they could be trying to smear Watson’s name to justify trading him. Though, the allegations could also weaken the market for him.

Deshaun Watson responds to sexual assault lawsuit allegation

Deshaun Watson

Deshaun Watson responded on social media Tuesday night after an attorney filed a lawsuit against him alleging sexual assault, according to FOX 26 in Houston’s Natalie Hee.

According to Hee, Buzbee’s client alleges that Watson was getting a massage from a woman who says “Watson went too far.”

Here is what Buzbee wrote on Facebook about the suit.

“I am extremely proud to represent those who have no perceived power against those who have PERCEIVED power. Things are changing in this country, in this great state, and in this great city. And I feel like it’s for the better, for all of us!

“Today we filed suit against Deshaun Watson. Too many times women have put up with behavior that we all know no one should put up with.

“Should we make excuses for the famous? Or those who hold special positions, or quarterbacks on a local professional football team? I don’t think so! All people are equal, and all deserve dignity and respect.

“My dad was a butcher. My mother drove my school bus and worked in the snack bar. Knowing what I know now: My momma had more dignity in her pinky finger than most executives or coaches or politicians or famous athletes have in their whole bodies!

“This case we just filed against Watson isn’t about money—it’s about dignity and stopping behavior that should be stopped, NOW! Stay tuned for details. LET ME SAY THIS. I’m a Marine. I’m not easily intimidated. If you have info or have been part of this, contact my office,” he wrote.

The Houston Texans quarterback responded in a note posted on social media. He accused Buzbee of being a “publicity-seeking” lawyer. Watson says Buzbee made a six-figure settlement demand, which the QB rejected, before the attorney filed the lawsuit.

Watson, 25, has been the quarterback of the Texans since they drafted him No. 12 overall in 2017. He is seeking a trade away from the team.

Melvin Gordon has DUI charges dismissed

Melvin Gordon

Melvin Gordon was cited for driving while under the influence back in October, but the Denver Broncos running back will not be charged.

Gordon had his DUI charge dismissed on Wednesday, according to Mike Klis of 9News. He pleaded guilty to reckless driving for excessive speeding.

The Broncos chose not to suspend Gordon following his DUI citation. The team was said to be satisfied with the way he handled the situation after he apologized to his teammates, coaches and management. There was some talk that the Broncos could void the $4.5 million Gordon is guaranteed next season, but it does not appear that is going to happen.

Gordon was pulled over by the Denver Police Department for driving 25 and 39 mph over the posted speed limit. He reportedly admitted to police that he had some drinks during dinner at a friend’s house. You can read more details from the incident here.

Gordon, 27, rushed for 986 yards and nine touchdowns in his first season with the Broncos last year.

Judge makes key ruling in Vanessa Bryant’s lawsuit over crash photos

Vanessa Bryant

Vanessa Bryant filed a lawsuit last year over unauthorized photos that were taken at the site where her husband Kobe and daughter Gianna died in a helicopter crash. On Monday, a judge ruled in her favor on a key issue related to the case.

Some of the photos in question were taken by Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputies. Lawyers for the department had filed a motion to keep the deputies’ names under seal, arguing that releasing the names would make the deputies’ addresses and personal information accessible and that hackers could target them. According to Richard Winton of the Los Angeles Times, U.S. District Judge John F. Walter ruled against the Sheriff’s Department on Monday.

Bryant’s attorney Luis Li argued that “transparency promotes accountability,” and Walter agreed. The judge said “the public has a vested interest in assessing the truthfulness of the allegations of official misconduct” when the case involves police officers.

Further, the L.A. County Sheriff’s Department has insisted that the photos that were taken at the crash site have been disposed of and/or deleted from electronic devices and no longer exist. Walter said in his ruling that the department’s concern that hackers could locate the photographs if they learned the identities of the deputies is “totally inconsistent with their position that such photographs no longer exist.”

The lawsuit filed by Bryant seeks damages for negligence and invasion of privacy. The suit alleges that deputies and two LA firefighters took and shared photos of the victims of the crash, which took place on Jan. 26, 2020.

You can read more details from the lawsuit here.

Oliver Luck accuses Vince McMahon of firing him for ‘sinister purpose’

Oliver Luck

Oliver Luck has filed a response to Vince McMahon and Alpha Entertainment over his firing by the XFL.

McMahon’s XFL shut down last year, which was the first season of its revival. They shut down during the middle of the season, citing the pandemic as their reason.

Luck, who was the commissioner of the league, was on a 5-year, $35 million contract. The XFL fired him, so he responded with a lawsuit last year. The two sides are engaged in a legal battle, with the XFL arguing Luck was fired for cause.

In his latest legal filing in Connecticut district court, Luck alleges that McMahon and XFL parent company Alpha Entertainment, fired him for the “sinister purpose” of avoiding paying him. They said the XFL had no cause or grounds to fire him.

“McMahon violated his duty of good faith . . . to ensure that Alpha did not manufacture spurious or dishonest grounds on which to terminate Mr. Luck for the sinister purpose of avoiding payment of all compensation to which he was entitled upon a termination without cause,” Sportico’s Michael McCann reports.

Luck, 60, worked at the NCAA prior to the XFL. He has also served as the athletic director for West Virginia.

Luck was also mentioned as a candidate to be the next Pac-12 commissioner.