The Miami Herald

Ex-teen heartthrob in tug-of-war with bankers

Chances are ex-teen heartthrob David Cassidy won’t sing I Think I Love You to BankUnited bigs any time soon!

The star of The Partridge Family and the Miami Lakes bankers are entangled in a tug-of-war over a $1.35 million-condo that Cassidy bought in Fort Lauderdale in 2005.

BankUnited drew first blood by filing a foreclosure action against Cassidy when he stopped making payment on its $900,000-exotic mortgage.

“It’s a strategic default,” says Cassidy’s lawyer, Jeff Harrington. “It just so happens that Mr. Cassidy is not your typical client.”

And Cassidy’s fighting back. He’s counter-suing for fraud. Bank officials declined comment. In their court action, they claim Cassidy now owes $916,488.62.

Cassidy listed the 34th floor condo at the Las Olas River House for $1.1 million.

PEEVED AT PIVEN

Jeremy Piven’s channeling Ari Gold again!

Piven, whose portrayal of greedy agent Gold on HBO’s Entourage won three Emmys, was asked to appear at Wednesday’s South Florida celebration of Marshall Faulk’s induction into the football Hall of Fame. The wingding, at Gulfstream Park’s Playwright Irish Pub, is to benefit the running back’s youth foundation.

But, a Faulk insider tell me, Piven messaged that it’d set the charity back $10,000 for his showing up!

Piven, who didn’t respond to a text message asking for comment, wanted the money for his parent’s Piven Theatre Workshop in Chicago. Still, miffed organizers told thanks, but no thanks.

Scheduled to appear, for free, alongside Faulk: NFL legends Lawrence Taylor, Warren Sapp and Michael Irvin, and ex-Matchbox Twenty guitarist Adam Gaynor.

LAGASSE’S LAGNAPPE

Celebrity chef Emeril Lagasse’s is getting a kick in the behind on his way out of South Beach.

A racial discrimination lawsuit was filed against the Creole cuisine king’s chi-chi eatery Emeril’s as it serves its last dinners tonight. Its lease at the Loews Hotel on Collins wasn’t renewed.

Sous-chef Brian Buckner, 38, claims the Good Morning America foodie’s managers here failed to promote him because he’s black. He eventually got fired after questioning a kitchen manager’s un-Emerilesque purchases of – gasp! – FROZEN squid instead of the fresh stuff.

“The allegations speak for themselves,” said the sous-chef’s attorney, Michael Buckner.

George Ditta, Emeril’s general counsel, said the company will mount a “vigorous” defense.




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