NEW YORK, N.Y. - The NHL Players' Association says it hasn't seen a lawsuit reportedly filed by the parents of late enforcer Derek Boogaard seeking $9.8 million from the union.
TMZ reported Friday night that Boogaard's family is suing the union to collect the $4.8 million remaining on the contract for their son, who died last year, and an additional $5 million in punitive damages.
According to TMZ, the suit says the players' association failed to take proper steps to help them receive the money left on Boogaard's deal with the New York Rangers when he died May 13, 2011, from a mixture of drugs and alcohol.
"We are saddened to read reports that the parents of the late Derek Boogaard have filed a lawsuit against the NHLPA," the union said in a statement sent to The Associated Press. "We have not been served with or seen a copy of the complaint, but we are confident that there is no meritorious claim that can be made against the NHLPA in regard to Derek's tragic death.
"It is not appropriate to comment further at this time."
Boogaard's parents claim the 28-year-old player was addicted to prescription pills at the time of his death, TMZ said, partly because he had been prescribed "a multitude of narcotics and sleeping pills by both the team doctors, physicians, trainers, and dentists of the New York Rangers and the Minnesota Wild."
Because they believe the clubs are partly responsible for Boogaard's death, his parents went to the players' association, which according to the report promised to help them file a grievance to get the Rangers to pay out what was left on the contract with the team.
According to the lawsuit, the NHLPA failed to file the grievance by the required deadline, leaving the Boogaards unable to collect the remainder of the money, TMZ reported.