Arizona Cardinals Football Club, Inc. et al v. Bryant et al

Filing 17

ORDER denying 16 Motion for Default Judgment. Plaintiffs shall have until 3/20/2009 to file a new motion for default judgment. Signed by Judge David G Campbell on 2/24/2009.(NVO)

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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 WO IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE DISTRICT OF ARIZONA Arizona Cardinals Football Club, Inc., an Arizona corporation; and National Football League Management Council, a non-profit association, Plaintiffs, vs. Wendell Bryant, an unmarried man, Defendant. ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) No. CV-08-1541-PHX-DGC ORDER Plaintiffs Arizona Cardinals Football Club, Inc. and the NFL Management Council have filed a motion for default judgment against Defendant Wendell Bryant. Dkt. #16. For reasons stated below, the Court will deny the motion without prejudice. I. Background. Bryant is a former football player for the Arizona Cardinals. Pursuant to the NFL collective bargaining agreement, the Cardinals and Bryant submitted separate non-injury grievances to an NFL arbitrator. The arbitrator denied Bryant's grievance and sustained the Cardinals' grievance, awarding the club $2,767,778. Plaintiffs filed a complaint seeking an order confirming the arbitration award pursuant to the Labor Management Relations Act, 29 U.S.C. 185 ("LMRA"). Dkt. #1. The complaint names Bryant and the NFL Players Association, a labor organization, as defendants. Id. Plaintiffs voluntarily dismissed the NFL Players Association. Dkt. #15. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 II. Motion for Default Judgment. Because Bryant's default has been properly entered (see Dkt. ##6, 11, 12), the Court has discretion to grant default judgment against Bryant pursuant to Rule 55(b) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. See Aldabe v. Aldabe, 616 F.2d 1089, 1092 (9th Cir. 1980). Factors the Court should consider in deciding whether to grant default judgment include (1) the possibility of prejudice to Plaintiffs, (2) the merits of the claim, (3) the sufficiency of the complaint, (4) the amount of money at stake, (5) the possibility of a dispute concerning material facts, (6) whether default was due to excusable neglect, and (7) the policy favoring a decision on the merits. See Eitel v. McCool, 782 F.2d 1470, 1471-72 (9th Cir. 1986). Because Plaintiffs do not address the Eitel factors (see Dkt. #16), the Court will deny the motion for default judgment without prejudice. Plaintiffs shall have until March 20, 2009 to refile the motion. In discussing the second and third Eitel factors, Plaintiffs shall specifically address the issue of subject matter jurisdiction and whether the complaint states a claim for relief against Bryant given that the claim against the NFL Players Association has been dismissed. Specifically, with the labor organization having been dismissed from the case, does the Court have subject matter jurisdiction under the LMRA, and can Plaintiffs state a claim against an individual player under the LMRA? See 29 U.S.C. 185(c) (granting district courts jurisdiction over actions "by or against labor organizations"). IT IS ORDERED: 1. 2. Plaintiffs' motion for default judgment (Dkt. #16) is denied without prejudice. Plaintiffs shall have until March 20, 2009 to file a new motion for default judgment. DATED this 24th day of February, 2009. -2-

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