NEW YORK -- Avoiding the potential of a second embarrassing
sexual harassment trial, Madison Square Garden settled a lawsuit
with a former New York Rangers cheerleader who had accused
executives of making unwanted advances.
MSG and Courtney Prince, who was fired in January 2004,
announced a settlement Wednesday of Prince's federal lawsuit.
Identical statements released by the arena and by Prince, 29, said
the matter had been resolved "with no admission of wrongdoing on
the part of any party." Both sides declined further comment.
After refusing a settlement deal with former Knicks team
executive Anucha Browne Sanders when she accused coach Isiah Thomas
and MSG of sexual harassment, the team and the Garden endured an
embarrassing trial that exposed the club's tawdry side, from its
dysfunctional clubhouse to its star player's sexual exploits with a
A jury awarded Browne Sanders $11.6 million in October; MSG
settled with her for $11.5 million before both sides were to return
to court to discuss further damages.
Prince, the former captain of the Rangers' cheerleading squad,
said in her 2004 lawsuit that she was fired by the Garden after
warning cheerleaders that at least one member of management was a
She had said a member of management tried to kiss her and asked
her to have sex with him after a postgame party in 2003, and that
other executives made disparaging remarks about the sexual morals
of a fellow skater. She said the dozen cheerleaders were told to
stuff their bras, lose weight, wear fake eyelashes and hairpieces
and be more sexually alluring.
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission had recommended
that MSG have its employees undergo sexual harassment
discrimination training and pay Prince $800,000 in damages.