Mother of minor-leaguer who collapsed during game then died is suing NBA, Pistons, ownership of Grand Rapids Drive, arena

Zeke Upshaw
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While playing for the Pistons’ minor-league affiliate, the Grand Rapids Drive, Zeke Upshaw collapsed on the court then later died. An autopsy revealed he had sudden cardiac death.

The Pistons mourned his tragic passing.

Now, comes the real-world fallout.

Statement from a law firm representing Upshaw’s mother, Jewel Upshaw:

Attorneys Crump and Hilliard and plaintiff Jewel Upshaw, Zeke’s mother, will announce a wrongful death lawsuit that will be filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District Of New York. In the final minute of a game on March 24, Zeke Upshaw crumpled face-down on the court in full cardiac arrest. Despite this undeniable dire situation, no life-saving measures were attempted, no CPR was initiated and no defibrillator was used.

Defendants in the case will include the National Basketball Association, the Detroit Pistons Basketball Company and SSJ Group, owners of the Grand Rapids Drive, and the Deltaplex Arena, where the game was held.