Toronto Raptors president Masai Ujiri labeled a civil lawsuit filed against him as “malicious” and said “the truth will come out” about what happened the night he is alleged to have assaulted a sheriff’s deputy in Northern California, according to a report from the Canadian Press.
Alameda County deputy Alan Strickland alleges Ujiri assaulted him following Toronto’s Game 6 victory over Golden State in the NBA Finals on June 13 and filed suit against him last Friday in federal court.
Strickland and his wife, Kelly, are seeking a jury trial and asking for damages greater than $75,000, along with medical and incidental expenses (both accrued and in the future), loss of earnings, prejudgment interest, property damage and legal fees.
According to previous reports, Strickland stated that Ujiri did not show proper credentials to enter the area of the court he was trying to access and struck the deputy in the face and chest when asked to produce them. Strickland was part of the security detail for Game 6.
No criminal charges were filed against Ujiri.
“To me it’s incredible that things play out like that,” Ujiri told the Canadian Press on Wednesday while traveling in Dakar, Senegal, where he spoke at an event to promote the 2022 Youth Olympics. “I think something incredible was taken away from me and I will never forget it. It is one of the things that drives me to win another championship because I want to be able to celebrate a championship the right way. This thing will be settled. The truth will come out. The truth will come out of this.
“It’s incredible that this malicious kind of claim, if I’ve been dismissed with the criminal case, then I really don’t know what this means for me. There is no case there and I look forward to whatever is coming.”
The Raptors, Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment and the NBA also were named as defendants in the lawsuit.