Shane Mosley responsible for failure to promote MMA event ahead of Super Bowl XLIX | KFI AM 640
LOS ANGELES (CNS) — A judge has finalized a more than $450,000 judgment against former boxer Shane Mosley and a company he owned with his sister in litigation brought by a company that hoped to use the image of retired fighter in promoting mixed martial combat. art event before the 2015 Super Bowl.
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge David Sotelo issued his order on Monday, essentially mirroring an interim ruling statement he issued on May 13.
Sotelo heard evidence beginning in 2021 in the non-jury trial of a countersuit brought by Swarm Entertainment LLC against Mosley; his sister, Cerena Mosley; and the company she owned and controls, Mosley Showdown Promotions.
“This court finds that when Shane falsely asserted that he did not consent to the use of his name and likeness, Shane intentionally interfered with (the agreement) between Mosley Showdown Promotions and Swarm, and with Swarm and the pay-per-view broadcaster,” Judge wrote.
During the trial, Swarm executive Wayne Mogel said Mosley “has a huge fan base and we were hoping to capture that”, and he added that he considered the 50-year-old Mosley to have been, at his peak, one of the best boxers of his generation.
In its ruling, Sotelo tentatively granted judgment against Mosley for $179,840. and against Mosley Promotions for $278,840, for a total of approximately $459,700. Swarm received interest dating back to January 30, 2015, but was denied punitive damages.
Cerena Mosley herself was found not liable, but the judge wrote that the boxer’s brother “intentionally lied about the consent she had and was obviously negligent in misleading Swarm regarding authority from Showdown to use his brother’s name and likeness”. The judge continued, “Maybe Cerena was just hoping that Shane’s good-natured brotherhood would save her and Showdown, that Shane would see her face possible legal issues for him to come save her.”
In reality, neither Cerena nor Showdown had the authority to authorize the use of Shane’s name and likeness, but Swarm didn’t know that when they made the deal with Showdown, according to Sotelo.
Mosley had started the litigation by suing Swarm in February 2016 for allegedly using his name and likeness to promote the event, dubbed “Super Brawl,” without his permission, but Sotelo dismissed Mosley’s lawsuit in 2018 after ruling that the boxer’s participation in a promotional video as the event demonstrated consent.
The Super Brawl was held at the Phoenix Zoo on January 30, 2015, two days before Super Bowl XLIX in Glendale, Arizona in which the New England Patriots defeated the Seattle Seahawks, 28-24. Swarm hoped to capitalize on the popularity of the Super Bowl and the large number of sports fans and celebrities descending on the host city for the weekend.
Swarm intended for Super Brawl to air as a live pay-per-view event, but since the company lacked experience promoting MMA events, it struck a deal with Mosley Promotions, which had l experience in organizing and promoting MMA fights, according to Mogel.
Mosley Promotions’ most important obligation was to ensure the boxer appeared at Super Brawl and consented to Swarm using his name and likeness to promote the event, Mogel said. Swarm wouldn’t have made the deal with Mosley Promotions if Cerena Mosley hadn’t promised her brother would be in attendance and allow his name and likeness to be used to promote the event, Mogel said.
The most important promotional tool available to Swarm was to be a short video that would be released to all pay-per-view providers prior to the event, Mogel said. The video was recorded at the Pomona home of Mosley’s father, Jack Mosley, in January 2015, according to Mogel.
In the video, Mosley says, “In a family tradition of world-class combat sports, join us at the Phoenix Zoo for Super Brawl Showdown.”
A week before the event, Mosley reportedly contacted Swarm and for the first time, insisted that he had never consented to the use of his name and likeness, prompting Swarm to withdraw his ad for Super Brawl. As a result, no pay-per-view commercial aired during the days leading up to the event and viewers were unaware it was available for viewing, according to the countersuit.
“Shane’s attorneys have threatened pay-per-view broadcasters that he never consented to Swarm using his name or likeness and that any promotion using his name or likeness by broadcasters would expose them to legal action,” the judge wrote, adding, “Shane’s decision to contact pay-per-view providers directly was petty and legally unwarranted.”