Saturday, May 21, 2022

UFC Fighter Lyman Good Hits Snag in Lawsuit Against Supplement Manufacturers

In October of 2016, Lyman Good was ranked as one of the top welterweight fighters in the world. He was about to fight on one of the biggest cards of all time, UFC 205 in Madison Square Garden, featuring numerous title fights and headlined by the Conor McGregor-Eddie Alvarez fight. Everything was looking great. Then he tested positive for a USADA out-of-competition doping violation. And that all changed. So Good took a novel approach to fighting these allegations.

In October of 2017, Good, a former Bellator Welterweight Champion, filed a lawsuit in a New York court. The lawsuit was filed against the manufacturers and sellers of certain supplements, that Good claimed were misleading and harmful in their communications to the public as to what the supplements contained. Thus, this conduct lead to the failed drug test, Good claimed.

As with most lawsuits, the companies responded and filed a motion to dismiss. The lawsuit contained allegations partially supporting claims of intentional emotional distress, battery and fraud. All of those allegations would require that Good show that the defendants had intentionally acted to hurt Good. Obviously, that’s a tough showing and the case was dismissed on those grounds. Any claims based upon improper advertising techniques were also dismissed, as the Judge in question opined that the defendants made no advertisements based upon misrepresentations.

However, one claim that did survive the motion is based upon the breach of an implied warranty of merchantability. This means that the Judge did agree with Good that the supplements did not conform to the expectations of reasonable buyers. At this point, the case will likely either be settled or head to trial. If any money damage awards are contemplated here, all of Good’s losses should be taken into account. Obviously, the purse on which Good lost out at UFC 205 may be factored here, but numerous other factors could act to increase the ultimate figure for which this case is resolved.

However, the case does make clear that if you fail a drug test, suing the folks who make and sell it probably isn’t the best approach.

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