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Terry McDonough’s $3 million victory over Cardinals includes $45,000 award against him

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Terry McDonough’s $3 million victory over Cardinals includes $45,000 award against him

Friday’s decision in the Terry McDonough arbitration requiring the Cardinals to pay $3 million to McDonough includes a requirement that McDonough make a payment to the Cardinals.

The 56-page ruling orders McDonough to pay the Cardinals $25,000 in attorneys’ fees for successfully defending against claims made based on his employment contract. It also compels McDonough to pay the team $20,000 as a sanction for breaching the confidentiality order applicable to the case.

As to the $25,000 award of attorneys’ fees, that’s another key facet of the NFL’s secret, rigged kangaroo, court. If McDonough had been able to sue in court, he would not have been required to pay for any portion of the team’s attorneys’ fees, barring proof of specific types of misconduct. But for the Cardinals’ defamation of McDonough through its bizarre and misguided attack on McDonough, which ultimately cost the team $3 million, McDonough would not have prevailed in his arbitration.

Would he have ended up with a $25,000 bill for his effort to reasonably seek justice?

As to the sanction for breaching the confidentiality order, this is precisely the kind of thing that puts the “secret” in “secret, rigged, kangaroo court.” In a normal case, the default position is that all information regarding the case is available to the public. In the NFL’s secret, rigged, kangaroo court, the default position is that no one will say anything about the case.

That’s why the NFL created its secret, rigged, kangaroo court. It’s why the NFL fights so hard in every case filed against it to pull the facts of the case from the sunlight of open court to the dark shadows of arbitration.

“Throughout the arbitration process, the number one obsession of the NFL was keeping every single detail of the proceedings from the public,” McDonough’s lawyer, Mike Caspino, told PFT by phone on Tuesday. “It wasn’t about a fair outcome. It was about keeping everything confidential.”

In this case, McDonough’s $20,000 sanction flows from “an exchange of emails” he had with “a member of the media, Mike Florio, on May 19, 2023.” The statement from the arbitrator is erroneous on its face, for one very important reason: There was no “exchange” of emails. I didn’t solicit the emails. I never responded to either message. I never even opened either message.

Although the Cardinals believe I talk to Terry all the time, I don’t. I haven’t. I didn’t. If I’ve ever even spoken to him on the phone, I do not remember it. His contact information isn’t in my phone. I’ve never sent him an email. And, again, I’ve never even opened or reviewed or examined the information he sent me on May 19, 2023.

It would have been nice for the arbitrator to consider that angle before picking $20,000 out of McDonough’s pocket. Is it really a breach of the confidentiality order if the person to whom the information was sent never even looks at it?

So why didn’t I open the emails? Because I know that the NFL’s secret, rigged, kangaroo court has an obsession with secrecy. Terry, I assumed, was mad and upset and motivated to show how he had been wronged, especially after the team’s shameful response to his filing. I didn’t want to take advantage of his potentially fragile and/or agitated state and, more than anything else, I didn’t want to get him into any trouble.

As a result, I did nothing. I didn’t open the emails or respond to them. There was no “exchange.” I didn’t seek information. I was provided information that I never accepted.

But, hey, now that Terry has been ordered to pay $20,000 for sending me a pair of emails, maybe I’ll break the seal and see what he had to say.

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