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Tribal Sports & Entertainment

Our Tribal Practice Group  serves as legal counsel to a diverse sports and entertainment-related client base, including: tribes and casinos, a tribal sports franchise, a Native-owned entertainment company, and several gaming and entertainment companies doing business in Indian Country.  We also represent sports leaders and broadcasters, action sports stars, horse owners and jockeys and amateur sports organizations.  Our Native perspective combined with our sports and entertainment law experience forms a natural foundation to provide sound legal direction and advice in a thriving, yet currently under-represented niche industry.

Our Tribal Practice Group is prepared to advise clients throughout Indian Country in a wide-range of sports and entertainment law matters:

  • Acquisition and sale of tribal sports franchises
  • Formation and operation of tribal athletic commissions under tribal law
  • Creation of joint sports and entertainment ventures
  • Formation of Indian-owned sports and entertainment promotion companies
  • Management and regulation of boxing, mixed martial arts (MMA), rodeo and action sports on the reservation
  • General business matters presented to tribal sports event and tournament councils
  • Contractual agreements, transactional counsel and agency for Native athletes

Tribal Sports Law & Business Seminar

Tribal leaders, business executives and aspiring Indian athletes attended Williams Kastner’s inaugural tribal sports law and business seminar, “Indian Country Goes Pro!” The seminar, hosted by the firm’s Tribal Practice Group, focused on the duel emergence of Indian athletes in professional sports and sports markets on Indian reservations, and the resulting need for tribal athletic commissions and franchise and talent agreements. The highlight of the event was the keynote speaker, Tex Hall, Chairman of the InterTribal Economic Alliance, who told the crowd of attendees,”the door has never been opened wide enough for Indian athletes.” Chairman Hall urged the support of Indian athletes nationwide, noting that “Indians can’t get to the pros competing in places like Bismarck, North Dakota.  Unless our youth have financial backing, they won’t make it.” Responding to Chairman Hall’s call, Williams Kastner donated all proceeds from the seminar to the Native American Basketball Invitational (NABI), the country’s sole national basketball tournament featuring Indian athletes. The event concluded with a trip to Safeco Field to watch one of the country’s most recognizable professional Indian athletes, Boston Red Sox Centerfielder and Navajo Indian, Jacoby Ellsbury, in action against the Seattle Mariners.

Attorneys in this Practice