Allen Ray Heckard v Nike and Jordan 2006

The $800 Million Lawsuit between Allen Ray Heckard and Nike/Jordan

In August of 2006, Michael Jordan's nearly identical brother, Allen Ray Heckard, filed a lawsuit against Nike and Jordan claiming that they had ruined his life by making his brother famous. Although Allen Ray Heckard is eight years Jordan's senior, thirty pounds lighter, and six inches shorter, this did not hinder in the least his ambitious lawsuit againt the sports' giants and seek a handsom some of money to prove he was serious. They do share the same bald shaven head, wear a single earing, are both African-American, and neither of them are successful in playing baseball. The fact remains that though similar in looks, Heckard is no match for Jordan, who can effortlessly slam-dunk a basketball after leaping form approximately the free-throw line. 

To be clear on where the line has been drawn, let's break down this financial sum of $832 million dollars:

  • $416 million each from Jordan and Nike
  • $52 million in damages
  • $364 million in punitives

The basis of the suit lies specifically in what Allen Ray Heckard was quoted in saying, "Micheal Jordian's high profile life style with the contrubution of Phil H. Knight's help has infected an injury upon his (Heckard's) life style that, according to every reasonable probability, will continue throughout the remainder of this life." He stated that continual public harassment, because of the alleged resemblance, "has troubled Heckard's nerves" and denied him peace of mind for at least 15 years, caused him trouble at work, inflicted emotional distress, and, presumably, rendered Allen Ray Heckard unable to capitalize porper names or use of the possessive form of nouns.

In the end, however, Allen Ray Heckard chose to dismiss the complaint without offering any reason. When Nike was contacted for comment, a spokesperson said Heckard had not been paid any money, and even speculated that he had "finally realized he would end up paying our court costs if the lawsuit went to trial."

As irony would have it, probably the single most successful thing this multi-million dollar lawsuit was able to accomplish between Allen Ray Heckard and Nike and Jordan was to give even more fame, notoriety, and identification between the sports' giants and Heckard. Most likely, for the remainder of his life. Which, in essence, was the foundation for the lawsuit to begin with and the cause of such alleged turmoil and stress upon his life style and any future life style he was to seek. 

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