I don’t know how no one has really picked up on this so far. It appears I’ve even scooped Beckett on this one.
Our old friends at Upper Deck are finding themselves in more hot water. This time the stew is caused by Lew. Lew Alcindor, that is.
According to the TMZ exclusive (maybe this is why no one has noticed?), Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is objecting to his UCLA photographs being used in UD’s Greats of the Game release. Apparently, he’s claiming that he specifically told Upper Deck that they were not allowed and they ignored his demands by using six different photos.
In return for the hassle of having yet another card that fans will send to him to sign, he’s asking for at least $1 Million in damages.
You’d think that Upper Deck would have learned from the past couple of fiascoes and, I don’t know, maybe not blatantly defied requests/orders. Granted, the claims against Upper Deck are all alleged up to this point, but it certainly seems to be a recurring theme.
Between the two settlements that they already have to pay to MLBP and Konami, you’d think the last thing they’d want to do is rock the boat and pay out another 7-figure sum, but what do I know. They really could just be going for broke at this point. Or, UD may feel that their holograms are actually impenetrable shields that they can hide their assets behind.
The other really interesting aspect of this case — Kareem gets to control his own images? Can someone out there provide a little insight as to why he’s not subject to the rules of the group (either NBA or NCAA in this case)? Is it because he’s retired?
The TMZ post doesn’t mention anything about Upper Deck’s potential defense, but a follow-up does mention that they want the case moved out of LA so that KAJ’s popularity doesn’t factor into any decision.
On a related note, if anyone out there has any Walt Frazier Southern Illinois cards from this set, I’d be happy to take them off your hands.