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More NBA Legal Drama Targets the Lakers

June 6, 2014 Legal Team

The Clippers aren’t the only one who is seeing their share of legal drama. This time, the Lakers are named in the lawsuit for race and age discrimination.

Fernando Gonzalez is suing both the Lakers and Time Warner Cable in Los Angeles Superior Court for shorting him on wages, opportunities, goods, and experience.

Gonzalez, who was born in Mexico but became a U.S. citizen, has worked for the Lakers for 18 years as a Spanish language play by play announcer. He claims that he and his Latino co-announcer, Pepe Mantilla, were treated differently from their Caucasian counterparts for terms of employment.

The lawsuit names various instances where Gonzalez and Mantilla were discriminated against: (1) Neither of the Spanish speaking announcers were mentioned at the beginning of games where broadcasters were announced on the big screen; (2) When the Lakers won the championships in 200, staff and broadcaster were gifted $6,000 commutative rings that Gonzalez and Mantilla were told they would have to pay $3,000 for if they wanted one; (3) For the first seven years of employment, Gonzalez and Mantilla’s families were not permitted to use the “family room” that other families had access to; and (4) They were left out of annual NBA meetings held in New York or New Jersey.

Further, Gonzalez is alleging age discrimination dealing with an incident in 2012 where Gonzalez was passed over for a Time Warner Cable Deportes (Spanish language sports channel) position that went to an under 40, under qualified broadcaster.

After complaining about the disparate treatment, Gonzalez found his compensation was drastically cut and Time Warner Cable refused to schedule the Plaintiff for games.

Source: Los Angeles County Superior Court Case No. BC546722