"At the 40/40 Club, ESPN on the screen," Jay-Z raps on 2003's "Dirt Off Your Shoulder." And now Shawn Carter is filing suit against one of the guys who was on ESPN all the time in 2003, Red Sox slugger David Ortiz, who owns a club of the same name in the Dominican Republic.
The lawsuit's apparently rife with the typical lawyer lingo for "Hey, that's our name/idea!" -- "marketplace confusion and damages" are alleged -- but Jay and his business connects certainly lifted their idea from the 40-homer, 40-stolen base feat in baseball. The lead-footed Ortiz, of course, has never even come close to pulling off that feat, recording his career high for single season swipes with three in 2007.
But then, there are many who would assert that something about Big Papi's renaissance as a power hitter was less honestly done, too. And surely Jay-Z, a Brooklyn-born Bronx Bombers fan, knows that a lawsuit against Ortiz is going to further solidify him as a consumer product pitched right at Yankees fans, another mark to the good after "Empire State of Mind" (which includes the line "I made the Yankee hat more famous than a Yankee can," a bit of braggadocio no one took offense to) at Yankee Stadium during last year's World Series.
Then again, the lawsuit might be more about no sane business, man wanting to be associated with a baseball player who hasn't hit better than .243 in a season since 2007 and has more than three times as many whiffs (13) as hits (four) in 2010. That's also possible.
(H/T to FanHouse)â†µ
This post originally appeared on the Sporting Blog. For more, see The Sporting Blog Archives.