New York, NY: An antitrust class action lawsuit brought against the National Hockey League (NHL), Major League Baseball (MBL), Comcast Corp. and DirecTV can move forward, according to a ruling by US District Judge Shira A. Scheindlin.
The lawsuit, Laumann et al. v. National Hockey League et al., Case No. 12-cv-01817, centers around claims that the defendants have created a monopoly over sports broadcasts that forces consumers to pay high prices to watch games. Brought on behalf of telecast subscribers, the lawsuit claims the defendants used anti-competitive practices in order to control the broadcasting market, enabling them to charge inflated prices for sports telecasts.
Specifically, the lawsuit states "The defendants have accomplished this elimination of competition by agreeing to divide the live-game video presentation market into exclusive territories, which are protected by anti-competitive blackouts [that don't allow certain games in certain markets to air]."
Plaintiffs in the class action lawsuit are represented by Michael M. Buchman of Pomerantz Grossman Hufford Dahlstrom & Gross LLP and Edward Diver, Howard Langer and Peter Leckman of Langer Grogan & Diver PC.