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Sunday, May 19, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

NFL’s Merriman Wins Big in Suit Against NBA Star

(CN) - NFL linebacker Shawn Merriman won $3.8 million judgment from former NBA player Christian Laettner, after Laettner failed to repay a loan related to several real estate ventures in 2007.

Laettner, who also played for Duke University, and one of his former Duke teammates, Brian Davis, were ordered to return Merriman's $3 million loan plus $800,000 in interest by U.S. District Judge Roger Titus in Maryland.

Merriman, a former first-round pick out of the University of Maryland, sued the two former Blue Devils and their company, BD Ventures, saying the loan was supposed to be paid back in full by March 2009.

Titus granted Merriman ownership interest in three real estate ventures undertaken by Laettner and Davis, and ordered the basketball players to cover Merriman's attorneys' fees, costs and expenses.

Merriman, a three-time NFL Pro Bowl selection and 2005 Defensive Rookie of the Year, recently inked a two-year deal with the Buffalo Bills.

Merriman was a force at linebacker for the San Diego Chargers, compiling 43 1/2 sacks in 60 career games with the Bolts. But injuries have hampered his production, as he's tallied only four sacks in the past three seasons.

Laettner, perhaps best known for hitting a game-winning, buzzer-beating shot against Kentucky in the 1992 NCAA tournament, was also a member of the original Dream Team which won the Olympic gold medal in Barcelona. Before retiring, Laettner spent the 2004-05 season with the Miami Heat.

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