It is billed as the most important patent case of the decade, and the companies on each side, eBay Inc. and MercExchange, a one-time online auction site, have fought tooth and nail. Both hired top counsel to fight the case, but when they needed to move to the Supreme Court, eBay wasn’t taking any chances.

The question, how easy it should be for a patent holder to win an injunction against an infringer, was too important. Too important, apparently, to leave only to Jeffrey Randall, a veteran litigator now with megafirm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom.

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