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Nets owner backing lawsuit against Russian doping whistle-blower

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Mikhail Prokhorov Biathlon (Onexim)

In news unrelated to the Brooklyn Nets, team owner Mikhail Prokhorov is finding himself in the middle of some controversy as, according to the New York Times, he is backing a lawsuit against Dr. Grigory Rodchenkov.

Rodchenkov, who has been all over the media as of late, is best known for being the Russian doctor who came forward as the whistle-blower exposing the large-scale doping scandal related to the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.

The suit, according to the Times, is related to the defamation of three Russian Olympic bi-athletes, Olga Zaytseva, Yana Romanova and Olga Vilukhina, who were “linked to the state-controlled” doping scandal.

According to the Times, the three athletes are seeking $10 million in damages.

Prokhorov, of course, as we’ve noted here before, led Russia’s biathlon federation during the 2014 Games. So, naturally, he has some skin in the game - however, this lawsuit is a bit out of character for Prokhorov as he now aligns himself with his one-time political opponent, Vladimir Putin.

From the Times:

The suit is the latest legal maneuver for Russian athletes and sports officials who have been rebuffed at nearly every turn in their effort to dispute their involvement — witting or unwitting — in one of global sports’ most notorious cheating scandals. The International Olympic Committee barred Russia from sending a delegation to this month’s Winter Games in South Korea, though about 170 athletes from Russia were given special dispensation to compete as neutral athletes.

There seems to be little to no chance of this lawsuit moving much beyond the head-scratching phase, according to the Times.

Anyway, how’s that sale of the team coming along?