2 hours ago
Less than a week after a batch of trademark applications from the Professional Women’s Hockey League seemingly showed potential names for the new league’s six teams, another group of trademark applications has hit the United States Patent and Trademark Office database.
In addition to the original set of unique team names, the league has also filed applications for what appear to be generic city-based identifiers for each team, as follows:
PWHL New York
Much like with the previous trademark applications, the fact that PWHL Holdings, LLC, has applied for protection for these identifiers doesn’t mean they will be used. However, there had been rumors that the league might operate without team names for the first season, and this would seem to validate that idea.
Also like the set of unique team names, these were applied for on October 25. For some reason there was a delay in them landing in the database.
I am not a trademark lawyer, I’ve just found myself trademark-adjacent surprisingly often, but these applications feel unnecessary to me. My understanding is that you can’t trademark a city name on its own and the league has already applied for a trademark on “PWHL” so there’s no need to protect these identifiers individually. I could easily be wrong about that but it makes me question exactly what’s going on here.