Fisher files to move Hunter lawsuit
by Jeff Zillgitt, USA TODAY Sports
The lawyer for National Basketball Players Association President Derek Fisher filed a change of venue motion in Billy Hunter’s lawsuit against Fisher, Jamie Wior and the NBPA, claiming a conflict of interest between the superior court judge and stating none of the defendants live in Alameda County.
“Plaintiff Billy Hunter filed his Complaint in the wrong court. … No amount of creative pleading can justify the Alameda County filing,” the attorney for Hunter and Wior, Andrew Kassof, wrote in the motion.
The motion was filed Monday in Superior Court of California in Alameda County, where Hunter, the former NBPA executive director, and his attorney originally filed the lawsuit on May 16.
“Under the circumstances, defendants respectfully submit that this ex parte discussion provides an independent reason for the Court to transfer this case to Los Angeles County,” Kassof wrote.
Kassof’s motion states both Fisher and Wior, Fisher’s business manager and publicist, live in Los Angeles County.
The issue of the residence of the defendants is a boring legal move, but the relationship between Hunter and C. Don Clay, the Presiding Judge of the Superior Court of California, County of Alameda, is far more intriguing.
In April of 2012, Clay and Hunter exchanged e-mails with Clay expressing his support for Hunter regarding Hunter’s NBPA fight with Fisher, who wanted to an independent review of NBPA business practices.
In an e-mail on April 23, 2012, Clay wrote to Hunter: “This guy and his advisors still think they can out think you! They will never give up. You know always to be on alert. Keep up the fight! Will continue to pray for you.”
In an e-mail on April 27, 2012, Clay wrote: “Billy, Don’t let any of this get you down. You will come out of this. You have always known that you are a moving target. If there is any anything I can do please let me know. I know this must all be uncomfortable but it will run its course when all the facts come out. Best wishes to everyone.
Hunter responded that same day in a e-mail sent from his iPhone: “C Don thanks so much for … [For more on Derek Fisher files to move venue for Hunter lawsuit, click here.]