Former AFL star’s son claims Houston Rockets center ruined his chance at stardom with alleged bullying incident

Jesse Cinquini
3 Min Read
Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

The son of former Australian rules footballer Sam Newman believes that Houston Rockets center Jock Landale ruined his chance at stardom with an alleged bullying incident.

Newman’s son Max Jones, 25, claims he suffered serious injuries when he and Landale lived together at Geelong Grammar — which is a boarding school in Australia — back in 2013.

Jones is reportedly suing Geelong Grammar and Landale for up to $2 million. He claims that he was watching television in a common room when Landale and a friend of his came in the room with a portable speaker.

Landale allegedly put the speaker down on a table and then proceeded to pick Jones up and throw him down on the ground. The Rockets center then supposedly danced on Jones’ body, leaving him with life-altering injuries.

The situation is expected to make it to court next year.

According to court documents that were recently filed, Jones planned on playing in the AFL as his father did and believed he could make a lot of money doing so.

Jones said back in 2020 that he still hopes to work as a television personality.

“I love sport and have seen the highs and lows and good and bad sides of it through dad, both on and off TV,” he said at the time.

“I would really love to get into [TV]. That is what I am trying to strive towards.”

He believes that Landale’s alleged assault derailed his playing career and blames the school for not providing him with the protection he needed.

Landale is in his third season in the NBA and first as a member of the Rockets franchise. He is averaging 1.7 points, 1.9 rebounds and 0.6 assists per game while shooting 33.3 percent from the field across 17 appearances with Houston so far during the 2023-24 regular season. Last season, he played a bigger role for the Phoenix Suns.

The Rockets and Landale will take on the New Orleans Pelicans on the road on Saturday with the aim of earning their second win in a row. The Pelicans, meanwhile, have won seven out of their last 10 games and are fresh off a victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Dec. 21.

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Jesse is an aspiring sports journalist that has previously worked as a staff writer at SB Nation’s CelticsBlog and The Knicks Wall.