A Likelihood of Confusion?

On January 10, an organization nonpareil, the US Army, filed notice with the USPTO against the new (and winning) Vegas Golden Knights hockey team asking the board to refuse to register the franchise's mark, the “Golden Knights.” The Army bases the request on, among other things, the classic legal concept of “likelihood of confusion." This concept holds that a reasonable person is likely to be confused between the two products the trademarks represent and therefore the less established (newer) mark should be denied registration. Which in this case is a professional hockey team in sin city versus the US Army’s Golden Knights parachute team.

We’ll leave that quarrel for the lawyers to argue but as Uppercase wrote in 2016, the compelling issue with the Golden Knights name is the money the owners have left on the table by not pursuing a cool, contemporary, and evocative moniker with long term branding legs. $30.00 tee shirts and $130.00 jerseys emblazoned with an inspiring name to encourage a rabidly loyal fan base is the easy revenue stream.

The “Vegas Ace’s” is the obvious choice but something nonsensical say, the “Cactus Boulders,” or descriptively evocative such as “The Dry Heat” would have broader, not to mention more buzz-worthy, appeal.