NBA

Kobe Bryant’s widow sues helicopter operator for deaths

By AP February 24, 2020
FILE - This undated file photo provided by Group 3 Aviation shows helicopter pilot Ara Zobayan standing outside a helicopter, at a location not provided. Zobayan violated federal flight rules in 2015 when he flew into busy airspace near Los Angeles International Airport despite being ordered not to by air traffic control, according to records from the Federal Aviation Administration obtained by the Los Angeles Times. FILE - This undated file photo provided by Group 3 Aviation shows helicopter pilot Ara Zobayan standing outside a helicopter, at a location not provided. Zobayan violated federal flight rules in 2015 when he flew into busy airspace near Los Angeles International Airport despite being ordered not to by air traffic control, according to records from the Federal Aviation Administration obtained by the Los Angeles Times. Group 3 Aviation via AP, File

Kobe Bryant’s widow on Monday sued the owner of the helicopter that crashed in fog and killed the former Los Angeles Lakers star and their 13-year-old daughter last month.

The wrongful death lawsuit filed by Vanessa Bryant in Los Angeles Superior Court said the pilot was careless and negligent by flying in cloudy conditions Jan. 26 and should have aborted the flight.

Pilot Ara Zobayan was among the nine people killed in the crash.

The lawsuit names Island Express Helicopters Inc. and also targets Zobayan’s legal representative, listed only as “Doe 1” until a name can be determined.

Vanessa Bryant’s lawsuit asserts that Zobayan was negligent in eight different ways, including failing to properly assess the weather, flying into conditions he wasn’t cleared for and failing to control the helicopter.

The lawsuit was filed as a public memorial service for Kobe Bryant, his daughter, and all the victims, including Zobayan, was being held at the arena where Bryant played most of his career.

Calls to Island Express seeking comment were not answered and its voicemail was full.

The company issued a statement Jan. 30 on its website saying the shock of the crash had prompted it to suspend service until it was appropriate for staff and customers.

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the cause of the crash into a hillside in Calabasas on the outskirts of Los Angeles County.

Related items

  • Coronavirus: Ewing released from hospital and 'getting much better' Coronavirus: Ewing released from hospital and 'getting much better'

    NBA icon Patrick Ewing has been discharged from hospital and is recovering well after contracting coronavirus.

    The 11-time All-Star revealed on Friday that he had tested positive for COVID-19 and was isolating in hospital.

    Ewing's son, Patrick Ewing Jr, gave a positive update on the Georgetown coach and New York Knicks great's condition on Monday.

    He tweeted: "I want to thank all the doctors and hospital staff for taking care of my father during his stay, as well as everyone who has reached out with thoughts and prayers to us since his diagnosis.

    "My father is now home and getting much better. We'll continue to watch his symptoms and follow the CDC guidelines.

    "I hope everyone continues to stay safe and protect yourselves and your loved ones."

    Ewing won a national championship with Georgetown in 1984 and won gold medals with Team USA at the 1984 and 1992 Olympics.

    The former Seattle SuperSonics and Orlando Magic center was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2008.

  • Coronavirus: EuroLeague season cancelled, no 2019-20 champions Coronavirus: EuroLeague season cancelled, no 2019-20 champions

    Basketball's EuroLeague season has been abandoned and there will be no 2019-20 champions, it was announced on Monday.

    The campaign was still in its regular-season stage when the coronavirus pandemic forced the league to be suspended in March.

    Five teams had already secured play-off places after 28 of the scheduled 34 rounds of games, with three more berths up for grabs.

    Anadolu Efes Istanbul sat top of the standings, ahead of Real Madrid and Barcelona, with CSKA Moscow fourth and Maccabi FOX Tel Aviv in fifth place.

    However, the EuroLeague Commercial Assets (ECA) executive board declared the season over, announcing the 2020-21 EuroLeague will start on October 1.

    It said "every possible option" had been explored before reaching that decision, also announcing the cancellation of the EuroCup campaign.

    Given the spread of COVID-19, its degrees of evolution, and the differing ways in which its spread is being controlled within Europe, the ECA said there were "no guarantees" teams would be able to travel to games.

    The ECA added in a statement: "In keeping with our continued values of sports integrity and fairness, the executive board decided not to recognise any team as the champion for the 2019-20 EuroLeague, nor the EuroCup."

    Euroleague Basketball president and chief executive Jordi Bertomeu said: "Without a doubt, this is the most difficult decision we have had to take in our 20-year history.

    "Obviously, we had many motivations to resume the 2019-20 season, but in such an exceptional situation, we have to put people's health first and ahead of any other interest: our players, our coaches, our referees, our clubs, their staff, our league staff, our broadcasters, and all of their families. By doing so, we stay true to our beliefs and what we stand for."

  • On this day in sport: Ali wins controversial Liston rematch, Liverpool pull off Istanbul miracle On this day in sport: Ali wins controversial Liston rematch, Liverpool pull off Istanbul miracle

    It is 55 years since Muhammad Ali controversially won his rematch with Sonny Liston, while Liverpool sensationally floored Milan on this day in 2005.

    Ali retained his heavyweight title with a first-round knockout but there were doubts over whether Liston should have been counted out.

    Liverpool picked themselves up off the canvas to pull off a stunning comeback and beat Milan to win a dramatic Champions League final a decade and a half ago.

    LeBron James broke one of Michael Jordan's records more recently on May 25 and Bayern Munich were crowned champions of Europe at German rivals Borussia Dortmund's expense in 2013.

    1965 - Liston contentiously counted out

    Liston was on a revenge mission after Ali, or Cassius Clay as he was then known when they fought for the first time, defied the odds to dethrone him in Miami Beach in February 1964.

    Yet the rematch was over soon after it started, proving to be a massive anti-climax for a small crowd at the unlikely venue of Central Maine Civic Center, Lewiston, Maine.

    Liston went down when he was caught by a right hand from the champion in the opening round and referee Jersey Joe Walcott attempted to get Ali back into his corner as the challenger lay on the deck.

    Although Liston rose to continue fighting, Walcott quickly stopped the fight after consulting the timekeeper, with the verdict that the former champion had not got back to his feet in time.

     

    2005 - The 'Miracle of Istanbul'

    Liverpool hauled themselves off the ropes to conjure up the most unlikely of victories at the Ataturk Stadium in Istanbul 15 years ago.

    Milan were favourites to be crowned champions of Europe for a seventh time and lived up to that billing when they cruised into a 3-0 lead in a one-sided first half, Hernan Crespo scoring twice after Paolo Maldini's early opener.

    Liverpool roared back after the break, though, with Steven Gerrard, Vladimir Smicer and Xabi Alonso on target in the space of six minutes to bring them level.

    Milan did not know what had hit them and they endured the agony of losing on penalties, Jerzy Dudek saving from Andriy Shevchenko to give Liverpool a 3-2 shoot-out victory after looking down and out at half-time.

     

    2013 - Robben downs Dortmund

    There was also drama at Wembley when Bayern beat Dortmund in the first all-German Champions League final.

    Bayern stunned their Bundesliga rivals by snatching a 2-1 victory with just over a minute of normal time remaining, Arjen Robben the hero.

    Mario Mandzukic put the Bavarian giants in front on the hour-mark, but Ilkay Gundogan levelled from the penalty spot eight minutes later.

    Winger Robben settled it with extra time looming, though, nipping in with a sharp turn of foot and slotting past Roman Weidenfeller to end Bayern's 12-year wait for European glory. 

     

    2017 - LeBron moves past Jordan's playoff record

    James has been the man for the big occasion so many times during his illustrious career and he made history on this day three years ago.

    The superstar became the all-time leading scorer in the NBA playoffs as the Cleveland Cavaliers beat the Boston Celtics 135-102 in the Eastern Conference finals.

    That victory moved the Cavaliers into the NBA Finals for a third consecutive year, with James also able to celebrate moving past Jordan's playoff points tally of 5,987.

    James surpassed that mark in his 212th post-season game, 11 years after his first.

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.