Name sound familiar? It should.
He is also the lawyer that former New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady used during his deflategate cheating scandal in 2015-2016.
Kessler & Brady
Brady hired Kessler in May of 2015 just prior to taking the NFL to court.
Brady’s first appeal to the NFL took place on June 23, 2015, but it did not do much as the NFL upheld Brady’s four game suspension.
However, in early September of 2015, U.S. District Judge Richard Berman erased the four game suspension, allowing Brady to play the season.
Kessler and Brady’s downfall began in March of 2016 in the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in New York.
After more days of testimony in which “judges peppered Brady’s attorneys (Kessler),” the quarterback’s four game suspension was reinstated on April 25.
Brady and Kessler then filed an appeal for a second hearing, but the appeal was denied.
On July 15, 2016, Brady dropped the case.
Deflategate lasted an absurd 544 days and resulted in Brady and Kessler losing.
Beyond his work with Brady, Kessler’s bio on the Winston & Strawn website reads like a who’s who of sports-related court cases.
From Ray Rice to NFL Free Agency and more.
His bio is as follows:
Jeffrey is one of the most prominent lawyers in the country regularly engaged in high-profile sports litigation.
He has litigated some of the most famous sports-antitrust cases in history, including McNeil v. the NFL, the landmark antitrust jury trial which led to the establishment of free agency in the National Football League (NFL), and Brady v. NFL, which led to the end of the 2011 NFL lockout.
Some of Jeffrey’s clients in the sports law area have included the NFL Players Association (NFLPA), the National Basketball Players Association, the Arena Football League (AFL) Players Association, the National Hockey League Players Association, the Major League Baseball Players Association, the National Invitation Tournament (NIT), Wasserman Media Group, SCP Worldwide, MVP Sports, the Women’s National Soccer Team, the NFL Coaches Association, Players, Inc., the Women’s Tennis Benefit Association, Excel Sports, Endeavor, Super Slam Ltd., Activision Blizzard, and Adidas. Jeffrey has also represented various classes of Division 1 basketball and football players – NBA, NFL, AFL, and MLS players, the North American Soccer League, the United States Football League, and the Cities of San Diego and Oakland, as well as Alameda County, in various sports law disputes.
Jeffrey negotiated the current free agency/salary cap systems in the NFL and NBA, and successfully represented Latrell Sprewell in his controversial suspension arbitration.
In the area of NFL discipline, he represented the Union on behalf of Ray Rice, Tom Brady, Ezekiel Elliott, and the “Bountygate” players.
He also represented pro bono Oscar Pistorius, the double amputee athlete, in his successful arbitration to obtain the right to compete against able-bodied athletes around the world.