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Daniel Snyder sold the Washington Commanders to Josh Harris this offseason. But, did Snyder really sell Harris the “Commanders”?
Trademark attorney Josh Gerben tweeted on Wednesday that the United States Patent and Trademark Office denied the “Commanders” trademark application.
According to Gerben, there is an existing trademark for “Commanders’ Classic” and there are pending application by an individual.
Another lawyer, Darren Heitner, identified the man as Martin McCaulay and said he’s willing to withdraw his pending applications if the team makes a donation to a charity to support Native American students.
That potentially clears the second hurdle, but not the first.
Which means it’s possible that the Washington Commanders will need to rebrand. AGAIN.
Washington Commanders could undergo third name change in four years
If you’re counting at home, another name change means the NFL team located in Washington would be on its fourth name in five years. From 1937-2019, the team went by “Washington Redskins.”
Following public pressure, then-owner Daniel Snyder eventually agreed to change the name. However, he wanted to take his time with the name change.
Thus, the “Washington Football Team” was born. But, that was temporary until they settled on a permanent nickname.
They played under the WFT moniker for two seasons before officially becoming the “Washington Commanders” prior to last season. Now, after just one year as the Commanders, it might be time for another change.
This may be a blessing-in-disguise. The “Commanders” nickname never really went over very well.
It’s generic and so is their logo.
With Josh Harris coming in, his first move could be to name the team something else. That’s a power move, too. New owner, new team name.
Harris already owns the Philadelphia 76ers. Side note: how long until the left-wingers go after that nickname? 76ers, obviously, refers to the 1776 signing of the Declaration of Independence.
Slavery still existed in America in 1776. I’m truly shocked this isn’t brought up more by that group.
But I digress.
What options are left if Washington has to rebrand AGAIN?
In case you’re wondering, here were the other finalists before the team chose “Commanders”: Armada, Presidents, Brigade, Red Hogs, Commanders, Red Wolves, Defenders and the Washington Football Team.
Look, it’s tough to choose a nickname in 2023. Everything is offensive to someone or some group. Plus, with the hundreds of pro teams, college teams, minor league teams, etc. it’s going to be difficult to not step on a trademark somewhere.
Can you imagine if Harris’ first move were to rename the team “Washington Redskins”? Talk about the ultimate power move.
It’s not going to happen, obviously, but I’d respect the hell out of Harris for doing it.
At the end of the day, it’s more likely than not that the legal issues are sorted out and the team remains the “Commanders.”
But it’s more fun to think about that not happening.
Here’s to hoping for an unprecedented fourth new Washington NFL team in the past five seasons.
Follow Dan Zaksheske on Twitter: @RealDanZak
5 CommentsLeave a Reply
Their new name should be “The Washington Swamp Rats”
Just name them the Clowns and be done with it.
how about the Washington Bookies
an actual hat-tip to the guys who run the league (and why I don’t watch this clown-shit-show)…
… or how about:
The Washington Transgenders!!
Think of the support from Transheiser-Busch and Tar-gay! They uniforms could be “rainbow!” It’d would be “fabulous!”
I think Redskins would be fantastic just to piss everyone off.