HoopsHype Christian Laettner rumors

November 25, 2014 Updates

So who is responsible for choosing the memorable title of “I Hate Christian Laettner” for the upcoming documentary on one of the most polarizing college basketball players in history? Well, that would be Christian Laettner himself. ESPN announced last week it will air a 90-minute examination of Laettner’s life on March 15, 2015 at 9 p.m. ET as part of its acclaimed "30 for 30" series. The film is being directed by Rory Karpf, who previously directed “The Book of Manning” and “Tim Richmond: To The Limit,” and when Karpf met with Laettner at his home in Jacksonville a couple of months ago, Laettner showed Karpf some custom t-shirts with "I STILL LOVE CHRISTIAN LAETTNER" on the front, a humorous retort to the "I STILL HATE LAETTNER" t-shirts that float around the state of Kentucky to this day. Sports Illustrated

"This is something people don't realize about me but I can laugh, and laugh at myself,” Laettner said in an interview with Sports Illustrated on Friday. “The very first time I saw an “I STILL HATE LAETTNER” t-shirt was six or seven years ago and I thought it was so funny that Kentucky fans were selling the shirts on stores around campus. So I pointed the shirt out to Rory and maybe he got the feeling then that, hey, Christian can laugh at himself, so that's a storyline we can use in the film. Sports Illustrated

"Once people see the film some, people might see Christian differently," Karpf said. "I’m not saying everything will be viewed in rose-colored glasses but I think people will see sides of Christian Laettner they have never seen before. I feel like we have compelling material and I’m hoping it will be a captivating film for Duke lovers, haters and people who don't even know Duke basketball before this." "More than anything I hope people watch it [and] enjoy it, and to quote Fox News, it's then for them to decide," Laettner said. "I want the viewers to decide whether they like it or not. But I'm going to like it because I was honored they asked me. How many people get to say a 30 for 30 is being made about them?" Sports Illustrated

November 18, 2014 Updates

ESPN Films today announced a new 30 for 30 film that will debut in 2015 as part of the award-winning and critically-acclaimed documentary series. “I Hate Christian Laettner,” directed by Rory Karpf (“The Book of Manning,” “Tim Richmond: To The Limit”), will premiere Sunday, March 15, at 9 p.m. ET after Bracketology on ESPN. Through interviews with former teammates and rivals as well as Laettner himself, the film explores why the polarizing basketball player was—and still is—so disliked. ESPN.com

May 30, 2014 Updates

An attorney for Christian Laettner was in court in Durham on Thursday to try to win a court order to help collect money the former Duke University basketball star lent to the West Village redevelopment. Laettner loaned money to the Durham company BDV III to help with the cost of the West Village Expansion, according to documents filed in Durham County Superior Court. He originally filed the complaint against the company last July. According to the court documents, the West Village Expansion was the second phase of the redevelopment of the former downtown Liggett Group tobacco buildings into the mixed-use development known as West Village. The Herald Sun

August 12, 2012 Updates
August 9, 2012 Updates

Laettner played a similar role on the 1992 “Dream Team” as Anthony Davis does on this year’s version, going from the best player in all of college basketball to a rarely-used substitute in the Olympics. When asked which team would win in a hypothetical game, Laettner said: “Of course I am going to say that they would never beat the ’92 team. The good thing about the ’92 team is that we never played cool because all those guys wanted to go out there and show the world how good we were. So we weren’t playing the other team. We were playing [for] our identity and for our whole country to show the world we were the best. “Michael Jordan didn’t play cool," Laettner continued. "Magic Johnson didn’t play cool. We wanted to kill everybody and I wish these guys [the 2012 team] would get that little more sense of urgency.” Charlotte Observer

August 5, 2012 Updates

Christian Laettner did not shy away from answering "the Kobe Bryant question." Asked about Bryant's assertion that this year's U.S. Olympic basketball team could beat the original 1992 Dream Team in a game, Laettner provided a stout defense of his squad from 20 years ago. "Of course, there's no chance the 2012 Dream Team would beat the original Dream Team," Laettner said by phone this past week from London, where he was covering the Games as a basketball analyst for FoxSports.com. Buffalonews.com

July 30, 2012 Updates
June 22, 2012 Updates

David Baumann: Just found out my broadcast partner Christian Laettner will be covering the #2012Olympics in London for @FOXSports. Congrats Christian! Twitter

June 21, 2012 Updates

David Baumann: Just found out my broadcast partner Christian Laettner will be covering the #2012Olympics in London for @FOXSports. Congrats Christian! Twitter

March 9, 2012 Updates

On Sunday, a cable-TV documentary is scheduled to shower glory on Christian Laettner and Brian Davis for the back-to-back basketball national titles they helped deliver 20 years ago to Duke University. But later next week they have a court appearance in Washington, D.C. It's about a loan their real-estate company failed to repay to former Duke captain Johnny Dawkins. The judge in the case, having last year ordered Laettner, Davis and a company of theirs to pay Dawkins $671,309, will decide whether to hold them in contempt of court in regard to their failure to do so. In court documents and in interviews, Laettner, Davis and their attorney say any failure to make court-ordered payments is attributable to a lack of resources. Wall Street Journal

Court documents show that Laettner and Davis individually and their real-estate businesses are defendants in several civil lawsuits seeking repayment of loans worth about $30 million. The plaintiffs include sports celebrities like ex-Chicago Bull Scottie Pippen, who played with Laettner on the 1992 Olympic team. In August 2010, a state court judge in Lake County, Ill., ordered Laettner and Davis to repay Pippen $2.5 million. Through his attorney, Pippen said he had been paid half that amount and that litigation between the parties continues. "What they have done isn't honest—I feel cheated," said Shawne Merriman, the three-time All-Pro Buffalo Bills linebacker who had lent money to the real-estate ventures of Laettner and Davis, which operated under a multitude of names. Wall Street Journal

March 8, 2012 Updates

On Sunday, a cable-TV documentary is scheduled to shower glory on Christian Laettner and Brian Davis for the back-to-back basketball national titles they helped deliver 20 years ago to Duke University. But later next week they have a court appearance in Washington, D.C. It's about a loan their real-estate company failed to repay to former Duke captain Johnny Dawkins. The judge in the case, having last year ordered Laettner, Davis and a company of theirs to pay Dawkins $671,309, will decide whether to hold them in contempt of court for failing to do so. In court documents and in interviews, Laettner, Davis and their attorney say any failure to make court-ordered payments is attributable to a lack of resources. Wall Street Journal

Court documents show that Laettner and Davis individually and their real-estate businesses are defendants in several civil lawsuits seeking repayment of loans worth about $30 million. The plaintiffs include sports celebrities like ex-Chicago Bull Scottie Pippen, who played with Laettner on the 1992 Olympic team. In August 2010, a state court judge in Lake County, Ill., ordered Laettner and Davis to repay Pippen $2.5 million. Through his attorney, Pippen said he had been paid half that amount and that litigation between the parties continues. Wall Street Journal

In January 2011, a federal court judge in Maryland ordered Laettner and Davis to pay Merriman $3.7 million. Laettner declined to be interviewed. Speaking on behalf of their real-estate companies, Davis said, "Me and Christian took a lot of risk." Davis said he regretted alienating friends, particularly Dawkins, whom he has known for 25 years. Davis attributed their financial woes to overaggressive expansion and to the same economic downturn that toppled real-estate empires across America. "The timing of the economic collapse and our game plan was not good," he said. Wall Street Journal

In April 2010, Laettner acknowledged in a deposition in the Merriman case that he had personally guaranteed some investments. When asked why he had not paid Merriman, Laettner said: "There's not enough money available in the business to pay him back…I think the economy has a lot to do with it." In Durham, meanwhile, their successful West Village project is being sold piecemeal to satisfy creditors, according to court documents. On Tuesday, Laettner, Davis, Niemann and their attorneys and advisers held a conference call to work through a strategy for selling the balance, which Niemann says could take at least a year. "It's been tough," says Niemann, a defendant in some of the litigation. Davis still runs the duo's legal partnerships. "We just would want people to know our heads and hearts have always been in the right place," he said. Wall Street Journal

January 24, 2012 Updates
January 19, 2012 Updates

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