|A District Court judge ruled yesterday that boxer Clarence ‘Bones’ Adams can wear a temporary tattoo advertising online casino GoldenPalace.com. Bones Adams will sport the controversial tattoo on his back during his televised superbantam weight title bout with Paulie Ayala Saturday night. |
In what has turned out to be the best advertisement for a cyber casino yet, the Nevada Athletic Commission tried to ban the tattoo, and all fighters in Nevada from wearing such body markings. They consider the tattoos could be distracting to judges and demeaning to the sport. But a Clark County District judge overturned the ban, finding it was an ‘ad hoc’ and ‘overbroad’ infringement of free speech in violation of the First Amendment.
Eric Amgar, the promotional division manager for the GoldenPalace.com said he was “ecstatic” about the decision. “It’s a victory for free speech really,” he said. “It’s a victory for boxers. Now they can make money for themselves with their own bodies. It also rewards companies like ours that come up with unique ways to advertise.”
Las Vegas attorney Paul Larsen, who represents Adams and GoldenPalace.com said the victory is not necessarily the end of the issue. He said the court scheduled an evidentiary hearing for March 7, when District Court Judge Valerie Vega will determine whether to issue a preliminary injunction that would that would allow all boxers to wear such tattoos in Nevada bouts.
“It doesn’t apply to anyone else but Bones Adams until after the hearing on March 7,” Larsen said. The Las Vegas attorney is confident his clients will prevail, even if the NAC, who began the ban, appeals the courts decision to the Nevada Supreme Court.
“I think it would be imprudent to appeal,” Larsen said. “I think our case is pretty strong.”
This injunction sets a favourable precedent for boxers, who can earn five to six figure paychecks for wearing henna tattoos, which disappear naturally days after they are applied.
WBA Cruiserweight Champion Virgil ‘Quicksilver’ Hill is also expected to have the GoldenPalace.com logo hennaed on his back when he fights Jean Marc Mormeck in Marseille France Saturday.