LOS ANGELES, Calif. — Former USC defensive end Armond Armstead won some legal points today as a judge ruled in his favor in his lawsuit alleging team doctors gave him painkillers that caused a heart attack and damaged his potential as an NFL player.

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Yvette Palazuelos said Armstead’s complaint included enough specifics to support, for now, his allegations of battery, medical negligence and negligent infliction of emotional distress against Dr. James Tibone and University Park Health Center.

The judge also denied a motion by attorneys for USC to put depositions on hold. The school lawyers said it made more sense to wait because Hospira Inc., the maker of the painkilling drug Toradol, was recently brought into the case via a cross-complaint filed by SportsPharm Pharmaceuticals Inc.

Taking the depositions too soon could require some to be repeated later, because of Hospira’s entry into the lawsuit, according to USC lawyers. Attorney Robert Bale, on behalf of Armstead, said it was important to take depositions from coaches and others before the football season begins, because scheduling them would be difficult once play begins.

Palazuelos agreed and said all the plaintiff’s depositions should be completed by late July.

Armstead filed his suit against USC and the other defendants Aug. 30. It alleges Tibone and other USC doctors irresponsibly treated Armstead while he played for the Trojans, requiring him to take Toradol several times without informing him of the possible side effects.

Armstead’s lawyers maintain Tibone battered Armstead by giving him Toradol “without limitation” and “without his informed consent.”

The suit alleges that USC knew Armstead suffered a heart attack and purposely withheld that he had been taking Toradol. SportsPharm Pharmaceuticals, also sued by Armstead, is alleged to have sold the drug to
USC.

Armstead, 22, played three seasons for USC from 2008-10, starting 17 games and making 59 tackles. He was not medically cleared to play for the Trojans in 2011 because of a training incident.

Armstead was drafted, but played last season with the Grey Cup-winning Toronto Argonauts of the Canadian Football League. The Argonauts released him in January and that same month he signed with the New England Patriots.