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Vegas Golden Knights’ trademark battle with the Army still isn’t over

This legal battle may not be over yet.

Las Vegas NHL Franchise Reveals Team Name And Logo Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images

The Vegas Golden Knights aren’t in the clear yet with their team name and logo. The Department of the Army filed another notice of opposition with the United States Trademark and Patent Office over the NHL franchise’s use of the “Golden Knights” name, reports’s Chris Creamer.

The Golden Knights responded with a statement Thursday “strongly denying the allegations” that they’re violation of any trademarks, via ESPN’s Greg Wyshynski. Here’s their full statement:

“In the Patent and Trademark Office, the U.S. Army filed its opposition to the Vegas Golden Knights applications to register the trademark VEGAS GOLDEN KNIGHTS used in connection with the sport of hockey. We strongly dispute the Army’s allegations that confusion is likely between the Army Golden Knights parachute team and the Vegas Golden Knights major-leaue hockey team.

Indeed, the two entities have been coexisting without any issues for over a year (along with several other Golden Knights trademark owners) and we are not aware of a single complaint from anyone attending our games that they were expecting to see the parachute team and not a professional hockey game.

That said, in light of the pending trademark opposition proceedings, we will have no further comment at this time and will address the Army’s opposition in the relevant legal forums.”

Both the Army and The College of Saint Rose, which also filed an opposition to the trademark, needed to commit to action on the issue Thursday after a deadline was set back in October. According to Creamer, The College of Saint Rose requested an extension to its opposition, while the Army “declared war.”

The United States Army Parachute Team is referred to as the Golden Knights, with that trademark officially registered. The report says there are three grounds within the Trademark Act upon which the Army is arguing Vegas is in violation of that trademark: “priority and likelihood of confusion,” “dilution by blurring,” and “false suggestion of a connection with persons, living or dead, institutions, beliefs, or national symbols, or brings them into contempt, or disrepute.”

The filing also claims “that the Army ‘believes it will be damaged’ by the registration of the mark, that they have long used the mark (since ‘at least 1969’) in connection with its U.S. Army Parachute Team, as well as for recruiting efforts, and public relations for the U.S. Military.”

You can read the full notice of opposition from the Army here.

Part of the Army’s claim includes comments from team officials back over the summer, when they said that the team’s color scheme was inspired by those used at West Point.

“[Team owner] Bill Foley is a West Point guy, sort of using those colors,” Golden Knights GM George McPhee said to The Washington Post. “You know his history at West Point. You know about the classmates he had that he lost serving this country. So, those colors mean a lot to us, and will mean a lot to our players. And we’re really proud of the logo. It’s clean, it’s symmetrical, it’s kind of bold, and again it stands for something.”

Here’s a look at those two logos, via

This tweet of a comment from McPhee on the team name was also highlighted.

The Golden Knights had until Feb. 18 in order to officially respond to the complaints, per a schedule of deadlines included in the filing. That schedule runs through mid-2019, so it’s fair to say that this problem won’t necessarily be solved in a quick and tidy manner.

Creamer says it’s unclear how this could pan out, but it’s clear the Army isn’t simply backing off at this point. The NHL’s newest franchise could eventually be compelled to change its name, logo, and/or color scheme, not too long after opening its doors for the first time.