An update has emerged on MLW’s lawsuit against WWE, with WWE filing a motion to dismiss the suit.
Brandon Thurston of Wrestlenomics confirms that WWE filed the 35 page document today in California. The filing noted the following:
NOTICE OF MOTION AND MOTION TO DISMISS COMPLAINT
PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that on September 29, 2022, or as soon thereafter as this matter
may be heard, either in Courtroom 4 of this Court, located at 280 South 1st Street, San Jose,
California 95113, or by videoconference or teleconference (if the Court prefers), Defendant World
Wrestling Entertainment, Inc. (“WWE”) will and hereby does move the Court for an order granting
Defendant’s Motion to Dismiss Plaintiff MLW Media LLC’s (“MLW”) Complaint with prejudice.
The grounds for dismissal are as follows:
First, WWE moves pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) to dismiss MLW’s
federal antitrust claim because MLW failed to plausibly plead (1) a facially sustainable relevant
market, (2) monopoly power or anticompetitive conduct, or (3) antitrust injury. WWE further
moves to dismiss MLW’s remaining state law claims pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure
12(b)(1) because the Court lacks subject matter jurisdiction over them if the federal antitrust claim
Second, WWE moves pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) to dismiss all
state law claims should this Court exercises jurisdiction over them. MLW’s claim for intentional
interference with contractual relations is unsupported by factual allegations, and what allegations
MLW pleads are entirely implausible. MLW’s claim for intentional interference with prospective
economic advantage fails because MLW does not allege that WWE knew about MLW’s
negotiations to sell a third party first-run programming, nor does MLW plausibly allege that
WWE’s alleged single communication with the third party influenced its decision not to purchase
MLW’s content. Finally, MLW’s unfair competition claim fails because (1) it is not tethered to
some other viable antitrust or tort claim, and (2) MLW lacks Article III and statutory standing to
assert such a claim.
Finally, WWE moves pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(5) to dismiss
MLW’s complaint for lack of personal jurisdiction because neither party is a resident of California,
no harm specific to California is alleged, and none of the alleged misconduct took place in
MLW is suing WWE over alleged attempts to monopolize the market, and to undermine its competition in the process, with MLW claiming:
WWE pressured third parties to abandon contracts and prospective relationships with MLW. WWE’s misconduct included disrupting every level of MLW’s business, including a major streaming deal for MLW which would have been transformative for the company.
You can read the full statement made by MLW on January 11 at this link.
We will continue to provide updates on the lawsuit as they become available.
WWE has filed a motion today to dismiss MLW's lawsuit in California, which was filed in January, alleging WWE interfered in potential MLW media deals including one with Tubi.
The filing is 35 pages. I'll be working on a summary of WWE's response. pic.twitter.com/im2HigrMB6
— Brandon Thurston (@BrandonThurston) March 15, 2022
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