TORONTO – Raptor president Masai Ujiri claims to have been assaulted by a sheriff’s assistant before an altercation between the two men at the Oakland Oracle Arena in the NBA Finals last year.
In a document filed Thursday in a California district court, Ujiri says that Alan Strickland assaulted him, “pushing him hard once and twice” as Ujiri tried to make his way through the field after the Toronto’s decisive victory in Game 6 against the Golden State Warriors.
The document, a joint file of Ujiri, the Raptors and the owner of the Maple Leafs Sports & Entertainment team, was filed in response to a civil lawsuit filed last month by Strickland. He claims that Ujiri only pushed Strickland after the first contact.
“In addition to the outbreaks, the two men no longer had physical contact with each other,” said the document. “The whole meeting between Mr. Strickland and Mr. Ujiri was brief. Mr. Ujiri was eventually escorted to court where he joined his team, accepted the championship trophy and gave a live interview to the camera. “
Strickland and his wife Kelly Strickland filed a civil lawsuit on February 10 asking for US $ 75,000 in general damages, as well as other compensation, including punitive damages, lost wages, current medical expenses and future and legal fees.
Strickland alleged that as a result of the altercation, he suffered “injuries to the head, body, health, strength, nervous system and person, all of which have caused and continue to cause great mental, physical, emotional and psychological pain and suffering ”.
Ujiri, the Raptors, the MLSE and the NBA, who filed a separate response Thursday, were also named defendants in the lawsuit. None of the allegations have been proven in court.
All of the accused requested a jury trial in their responses.
Strickland’s civil lawsuit was filed after prosecutors decided in October not to press charges against Ujiri.
“It’s kind of malicious,” said Ujiri last month. “For me, it’s amazing that it’s like this. I think something incredible has been taken from me and I will never forget it. This is one of the things that drives me to win another championship because I want to be able to celebrate a championship the right way.
“This thing will be settled. The truth will come out. The truth will come out of this. “