Ice Cube has reportedly been slapped with a $250 million lawsuit for supposedly poaching basketball stars and proprietary ideas from another newly formed pro league.
On Friday (September 1), Champion Basketball League filed a suit that claimed the rapper and BIG3 league co-founder, along with other co-founder Jeff Kwatinetz, got close to CBL’s administrators and players in-order to steal their ideas and players after their 2014 launch.
CBL’s founder, Carl George, says Cube and Kwatinetz did it to boost their own professional 3-on-3 venture. The two leagues originally teamed up as partners with the goal of creating a mutually-beneficial business startup. Their goal was to have this league compete with the NBA, according to George’s lawsuit.
The CLB recruited former NBA players who didn’t make their teams due to salary cap restrictions, but also didn’t sign exclusive contracts, partly so their outside activities could help promote their organization. This allowed them to play for Ice Cube on the side, which the CBL is now crying foul over because they’re claiming the BIG3 signed them to exclusive deals and broke the terms of their agreement.
"When certain players expressed their desire to participate in the CBL games, Mr. Cube confronted the players personally about playing in the CBL and threatened the players that they would be fined, not allowed to participate in the 52% of revenues bonus pool, or replaced on their teams,” papers filed in Manhattan Supreme Court claim. “These threats were also shared with the CBL. The BIG3 was aware that it signed at least 20 players who also signed contracts with the CBL."
Ice Cube, nor his attorneys, have yet responded to the lawsuit publicly.