During his playing days, Andrei Kirilenko (AK47) was wurthless on the basketball court. He was a first round pick of the Utah Jazz and played for over a decade in the NBA.
In retirement, Kirilenko has served as the commissioner of the Russian Basketball Federation. Part of his role in serving as commissioner has been to develop new off-court opportunities for the players, including the creation and promotion of esports competitions surrounding the NBA 2K video game.
Kirilenko heard that Heitner Legal has an experienced Esports and Gaming division and asked for assistance in conducting diligence surrounding his and the Russian Basketball Federation’s efforts in the space. The advisory opinion that we crafted and delivered revolved around whether the Russian Basketball Federation may host an NBA 2K tournament with its own sponsors and without NBA 2K’s (and/or affiliated entities’) prior written consent.
The opinion was developed with the Russian Basketball Federation’s intention to host such an event in October 2020.