The family of a Grand Rapids Drive basketball player who collapsed during a game in Grand Rapids and died two days later is filing a wrongful death lawsuit.
"When the otherwise healthy heart of a professional National Basketball Association athlete suddenly stops during a game there is absolutely no reason, in 2018, that his heart can not be immediately restarted", said attorney Bob Hilliard at news conference in New York Wednesday.
Upshaw, 26, was playing for the Pistons' G League affiliate, the Grand Rapids Drive, when he collapsed on the court in the final minute of their regular season finale.
The lawsuit said: "The NBA has known of the risk of sudden cardiac death in players since at least 1993 (and likely long before) when NBA star Reggie Lewis suffered a sudden cardiac death on the basketball court at an off-season practice at the age of 27 (a year older than the deceased, Zeke Upshaw)". "No attempts were made to save Zeke Upshaw's life".
Jewel Upshaw's lawyers say a four-minute video recording of the incident shows "not a single life-saving measure was administered".
Jewel claims when doctors finally tended to Zeke, the treatment was so poor - she later learned Zeke's body "went without oxygen for another forty minutes. leaving his brain completely oxygen deprived". "However, according to witnesses, no one ever attempted to revive him".
In her suit, Jewel says "there is simply no good reason for the defendants to have been unprepared for sudden cardiac death events such as Zeke's, and for their failure to react quickly to save a life". And I also told Zeke to do his best at everything that he did.
It lists eight steps the groups failed to take, including taking a complete and thorough medical history, using a defibrillator and performing CPR.