The Madison Square Garden Company (MSG) has launched legal action against the city of Inglewood over the development of a new arena for NBA basketball team the Los Angeles Clippers.
According to the Daily Breeze newspaper, MSG has alleged that Inglewood Mayor James Butts used a “bait-and-switch” strategy to finalise a deal for the facility to be built in the city.
MSG owns The Forum concert venue in California and has also said executives at the facility were coerced into clearing the project under the impression that it was not related to the Clippers arena.
MSG alleged that Butts persuaded Forum officials to give up a leasehold on part of a parking lot to make way for a new business-technology park, before city officials later revealed that the site would instead be used for the development of a new arena that could also host concerts.
Marvin Putnam, a partner at law firm Latham & Watkins, which filed the damage claim for MSG, said: “The mayor made it extremely clear that he needed that piece of land back for a kind of ‘Silicon Beach’. They’re attempting to flat-out trick people.”
Officials from The forum also said in a statement: “We, along with the hundreds of hardworking men and women who work to bring top-flight entertainment events to the Forum, are stunned that the city is moving forward with a plan that is in direct conflict with its existing and clear-cut written commitments to our venue.”
Butts is yet to respond to the claims and there is no proof of MSG’s allegations, but documents obtained by the Daily Breeze show that the city had said the car park land would not be used for anything that would harm business at The Forum.