A three-year-old lawsuit against a man once thought to be the savior of the Nashville Predators moved forward this week, albeit only slightly.
A hearing in the case of Predators part-owner David Freeman against William “Boots” Del Biaggio in Bankruptcy Judge Marian Harrison's courtroom was the latest step in the ongoing legal battle between Freeman and the now bankrupt and fraud-convicted Silicon Valley venture capitalist. Freeman's goal is to build a claim against Del Biaggio.
To that end, Freeman has subpoenaed a number of documents from the Predators hoping to bolster his claim against Del Biaggio. But attorneys for the rest of the Predators owners have filed a motion to quash, saying that producing the information Freeman is seeking will be too onerous. Additionally, attorneys for the other Preds owners have asked that the subpoenas be stayed pending further rulings in the Del Biaggio bankruptcy, which is being handled in California.
The local court entered an order into the docket today holding over the proceedings until May 24, when more rulings are expected to come down from California court.
Freeman’s overarching claim is that, due to Del Biaggio’s misrepresentations concerning his own wealth and financial stability, Freeman was unwittingly drawn into an investment he would have otherwise avoided. As such, Freeman is seeking relief in the amount of $38 million he invested in the deal.
After Craig Leipold's 2007 attempt to sell the Predators to Research In Motion honcho Jim Balsillie, a number of prominent local investors spearheaded by Freeman pushed to step in and keep the team from being moved to Canada. At the time, Del Biaggio swooped in  to lead the group, giving the impression he was the financial anchor. That illusion crumbled after clients accused Del Biaggio of financial misconduct and he was convicted in 2009 and sentenced to eight years in prison.
Despite the setback, the local group scrambled and carved up Del Biaggio’s stake between them in 2010, though many weren’t pleased. In fact, many members of the group filed lawsuits against Del Biaggio similar to Freeman’s. Per agreements reached with the bankruptcy trustee, however, all but Freeman’s case have been dropped.
Attorneys for Freeman declined to comment for this story. Attorneys for the ownership group also declined to comment.