Oct 29, 2022; Miami, Florida, USA; A general view of the pin flag on the 16th green during the second round of the season finale of the LIV Golf series at Trump National Doral. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

A California federal judge rebuked a New York Times attorney for making late arguments about unsealing documents from LIV Golf’s antitrust litigation with the PGA Tour.

In the wake of the PGA Tour announcing a merger with LIV and Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF), the organizations have since settled their antitrust and counterclaim litigation. This week, however, attorneys from The New York Times and LIV argued whether documents from the lawsuit should remain sealed.

According to Law360, during the hearing, LIV’s legal representative, John Bash accused the Times attorney Dana R. Green of loading up their reply brief. U.S. District Court Judge Beth Labson Freeman agreed and chided the Times’ late argument to unseal the documents.

“I feel that LIV has been sandbagged a little bit, because Mr. Bash is exactly right, that he has the right for LIV to provide briefing on if the standard can change, and if it does change the right to provide me with the arguments,” the judge said, per Law360.

LIV Golf and PIF previously maintained disclosure of certain documents from the antitrust litigation could cause “competitive harm,” but the Times argued that stance is no longer valid based on the since agreed-upon merger with the PGA Tour. LIV, however, believes the “competitive harm” claim still holds because they’re competing with other sports.

According to Golf Channel’s Rex Hoggard, the Times noted more than 60 documents it believes should be unsealed under the “compelling reason” standard. LIV was instructed by the judge to file a brief within two weeks on whether the sealing standard should change.

[Law360, Golf Channel]

About Brandon Contes

Brandon Contes is a staff writer for Awful Announcing and The Comeback. He previously helped carve the sports vertical for Mediaite and spent more than three years with Barrett Sports Media. Send tips/comments/complaints to bcontes@thecomeback.com