Cleveland Guardians roller derby team sues Cleveland MLB team in federal court over name change


In July, the Cleveland Indians introduced that the franchise can be known as the Cleveland Guardians following the conclusion of the 2021 MLB season. On Wednesday, a Cleveland-based curler derby group, additionally named the Cleveland Guardians, sued the MLB franchise in federal courtroom in an effort to dam their use of the title.

“Main League Baseball would by no means let somebody title their lacrosse group the ‘Chicago Cubs‘ if the group was in Chicago, or their soccer group the ‘New York Yankees‘ if that group was in New York – nor ought to they,” Hunton Andrew Kurth lead legal professional Christopher Pardo stated in a press release on behalf of the plaintiff. “The identical legal guidelines that shield Main League Baseball from the model confusion that may happen in these examples additionally function in reverse to stop what the Indians are attempting to do right here.

“By taking the title ‘Cleveland Guardians’ in a single day, the Indians knowingly and willfully eviscerated the rights of the unique proprietor of that title – the actual Cleveland Guardians.”

The Cleveland baseball franchise used the title for over 100 years earlier than deciding to alter it — a choice that was rooted within the group title being offensive to Native American teams. Because of this, the group introduced that they might be transitioning to the Guardians following the 2021 season.

Based on the lawsuit, the Indians knew that the Guardians curler derby group already had the identical title months earlier than asserting the title change. The lawsuit additionally alleges that the Cleveland Indians’ legal professionals made secret trademark filings on the small island of Mauritius “in an effort to cover its intent to take the Guardians’ title, after which reached out to inform the curler derby group of its plans.”

“As a nonprofit group that loves sports activities and the town of Cleveland, we’re saddened that the Indians have compelled us into having to guard the title now we have used right here for years,” Cleveland Guardians curler derby proprietor Gary Sweatt added. “We all know we’re in the best, nevertheless, and identical to our athletes do on the monitor, we’ll put every part into this effort on the courthouse.”

The lawsuit, Guardians Curler Derby v. Cleveland Guardians Baseball Firm LLC, was filed in United States District Courtroom for the Northern District of Ohio. | Cleveland Guardians curler derby group sues Cleveland MLB group in federal courtroom over title change


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