Right after Ken Turkel’s nearly 90 minute speech to the jury, Gawker’s attorney Michael Sullivan took over to defend his client.
Sullivan went immediately on the offensive and questioned why Hogan’s team did not opt to show the video to the jury. He tells jurors to watch it during their deliberations as he feels that Hogan left a good piece of evidence that is critical to the case. He said that no one is going to pay $5 to watch 9 seconds of sex, which is how much actual sex was in Gawker’s edit posted online. Hogan’s team came with the $5 price and that’s how the $50 million figure came up, factoring in traffic.
Gawker’s attorney tells jurors that Hogan went on TMZ to probably get more attention after the sex tape was released as no celebrity would use TMZ to send a serious message. He shot down the differences between the man Terry Bollea and the character Hulk Hogan, saying that not even Hulk himself knows when he’s Terry or Hulk. He said that if the jury awards Hogan the victory, celebrities will have a precedent and will start suing websites for things that they don’t like.
Sullivan thinks that Hogan wasn’t really upset about the tape and instead of filing an injunction immediately, he went around in a media tour. Sullivan once again brings up the spoof of Miley Cyrus’ wrecking ball video where Hogan swings in a thong on a wrecking ball, saying he was upset about the video but still went ahead with this commercial.
Sullivan questioned the fact that if there’s anyone who knows the “dark and twisted” things that Bubba “The Love Sponge” is into, it’s Hogan and he still went to his house and had sex with his then-wife Heather Cole in his bedroom. He asks if all this was a publicity stunt but there are only two people in this world who knows – Hogan and Bubba and Bubba is not testifying.
Gawker’s legal man said that his client had a harder case to fight as it was easy for Hogan’s team to make the jury feel sympathetic for him and make them dislike Gawker for what they do.
Judge Pamela Campbell then sent the six jurors, 4 women and 2 men, packing to start deliberating and ordered them not to talk about the case outside the room.