His Honor, Judge Richard Berman
The initial volley came after Judge Richard M. Berman met for twenty minutes, alone with Goodell, followed by thirty minutes, alone with Tom Brady.
Each man waited patiently while the other was in the robing room being undressed by the judge’s innocuous questions.
When Judge Berman began his proceedings, he announced that he expected an expeditious settlement—not a protracted trial that could run two years.
He added that he saw varying strengths in both sides, though he had not yet made up his mind. That is judicial legalese for baloney. He has a fairly good idea what should be done.
The bad news, indeed the worst news, would appear to befall Roger Goodell. Not that he was given only 20 minutes to speak, but that Judge Berman sees strengths on both sides. It means that Goodell’s wish for a slam-dunk, in your face ruling that he is king and emperor ain’t gonna happen.
Yes, Brady has made some points about his case. Whether that will entail a get out of jail for free card is not clear. He may have sounded reasonable enough to the judge to make Goodell look unreasonable.
Some are speculating that he has delivered a message that each side must now digest. Whether it goes right to the colon and out, or whether it is absorbed, only the next 48 hours will tell.
Another series of filings is due on Friday, and another hearing is scheduled for Wednesday.
We suspect that next Wednesday may make one of the combatants look ashen.