By David Beasley
ATLANTA, March 12 (Reuters) - Lawyers for an Atlanta woman who says basketball legend Michael Jordan is the father of her 16-year-old son asked a judge Tuesday to order Jordan to immediately take a DNA test.
Pamela Smith, 48, filed a paternity suit against Jordan last month seeking child support. Jordan denies he is the father of the child and has also filed a counterclaim seeking sanctions against Smith for making false claims.
Smith acknowledged in a divorce proceeding that her now ex-husband is the father of the child, according to Jordan's lawyers.
"It is unfortunate that well known figures are the target of these kind of claims," Jordan's spokeswoman, Estee Portnoy, said in a statement.
However, Smith attorney Randy Kessler said Tuesday that a simple $300 saliva test will prove or disprove the paternity question.
In a court filing Tuesday, Kessler asked Fulton County Superior Court Judge Wendy Shoob to order Jordan to submit to "immediate genetic testing." There was no immediate ruling from Shoob following a 20-minute hearing Tuesday in the judge's chambers, Kessler said.
"My son has the right to know who his father is," Smith told reporters after the hearing. "He has had an issue with it over the years."
If Jordan is ordered to pay child support it would only be for about two years until the 16-year-old graduates from high school, Kessler said.
"If this was about money, she would have filed suit 10 years ago," the attorney said.
Jordan's attorney, John Mayoue, declined to comment following Tuesday's hearing. Jordan himself did not attend the hearing.
Jordan, 50, is widely hailed as the best basketball player of all time and was a member of six NBA championship teams with the Chicago Bulls. He is majority owner of the NBA's Charlotte Bobcats team. (Editing by Tom Brown. Editing by Andre Grenon)