Students host “A Magical Night” at the Amway Center

By second-year law student Tyler Rutledge

On March 18, Stetson Law’s Entertainment and Sports Law Society and Intellectual Property Law Society co-hosted “A Magical Night” in Orlando before the Cleveland Cavaliers and Orlando Magic game at the Amway Center in Orlando.  The special event for law students included a three-person panel discussion with leading attorneys in the sports, entertainment and intellectual property fields followed by a back-and-forth basketball game between the Orlando Magic and the Cleveland Cavaliers, led by LeBron James. Law students from Stetson, Barry, Cooley and FAMU attended the event.

The three-person panel featured General Counsel for the Orlando Magic Nyea Sturman, Associate Counsel for Minor League Baseball Robert Fountain J.D. ’12, and Senior Vice President of Player Representation and General Counsel for Life Sports Management Jaafar Choufani. Stetson property and sports law professor and Associate Dean for Faculty and Strategic Initiatives Darryl C. Wilson moderated the event.

Area law students gathered for "A Magical Night" at the Amway Center in Orlando.

Area law students gathered for “A Magical Night” at the Amway Center in Orlando. Photo courtesy Alexandra Murdocca.

“EASL and IPLS strive to provide students with the opportunity to attend events that are educational, career-driven, and fun. Because many of our students are from Orlando and return to Orlando after graduation and because we have never held an event in the Orlando area, ‘A Magical Night’ enabled students to meet with attorneys in a new geographical area who practice sports, entertainment and IP law,” said Stetson’s EASL and IPLS student president, Alexandra Murdocca.

“The event was also open to other area law students, which allowed our students to meet their future colleagues in the sports and entertainment industries. With the Cavaliers vs. Magic basketball game following the pre-game networking hour and panel discussion, students and attorneys were able to continue to get to know one another in a laid-back, relaxed environment while enjoying a basketball game,” Murdocca said.

Associate Dean Darryl C. Wilson moderated the panel discussion for "A Magical Night." Photo courtesy Alexandra Murdocca.

Associate Dean Darryl C. Wilson moderated the panel discussion for “A Magical Night.” Photo courtesy Alexandra Murdocca.

Sturman described her position as her “dream job” and spoke of her experience with corporate sponsors as the Magic built their new home in the Amway Center.

Fountain spoke of his experience spinning what began as an externship as a second-year law student at Stetson into his position today. Fountain brought a unique angle to the discussion as a representative for a professional sports league.  He also discussed the intellectual property issues within Minor League Baseball regarding team logos, names and re-branding.

Choufani, also a practicing intellectual property attorney with Allen, Dyer, Doppelt, Milbrath & Gilchrist, P.A., spoke of his experiences representing players when negotiating with teams and about the structuring of contracts after a player is drafted.

After the panel discussion, students networked with Orlando area sports, entertainment, and IP law attorneys and participated in EASL’s silent auction during the pre-game reception.

EASL held a silent auction to raise money for its new philanthropic effort to raise money for the Boys and Girls Club of the Suncoast and the Sports Business & Leadership Association, two local non-profit organizations that support underprivileged youth in the community. EASL’s auction items featured an opportunity to present the game ball to both team captains at the Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Orlando Magic basketball game, Tampa Bay Rays baseball game tickets, and O’Maddy’s Bar & Grille merchandise.

“I had a great time, the panelists were very informative and I would love to do this again” said second-year Stetson law student Jaime Reitz.

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