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How news of the Cleveland Indians' name change put the spotlight on a local roller derby team

The Cleveland Guardians Roller Derby Team as been in existence since at least 2014.

CLEVELAND — *Editor's Note: The video in the player above is from a previous report regarding the name change. 

The Cleveland Indians made national headlines late last week with the announcement that team would change its name to the Guardians at the end of the 2021 season. 

While there were many who were disgruntled over the name's selection in general, others called into question the new name's originality, citing a local flat track roller derby league, already using the Guardians' moniker. 

The Cleveland Guardians -- the original ones -- posted a three-dimensional image of their logo to their Facebook Page on Sunday. The post garnered more than 300 reaction and more 100 comments as of Monday afternoon. 

"Congrats on your transition to the MLB hope you guys can play baseball too!" joked Marty Drexler under the team's post. 

Several people in the comments felt that the team should take legal action against the Major League Baseball team. 

Ryan Cornell shared his thoughts under the post saying, "Get a lawyer. First use in commerce is a legally sound way to defend use of a trademark. You don't have to register it for it to be a legally binding trademark. You're an athletic team, you are the legal owners of this name for use in athletics," he wrote. "Nobody else has a right to it and the baseball team simply stole it from you. Don't back down on this, because the trademark is potentially worth hundreds of millions of dollars." 

And it looks like fans are willing to help the amateur team take a swing at the legal bill. 

"Please go after them. I'll donate to the legal fund. Please ruin this for them just like they ruined our baseball team," said commenter, Matthew Maker. 

The Cleveland Guardians Roller Derby Team is open to individuals 18 years of age or older who want to "skate for fun, fitness, and competition." According to the team's website, the men's organization has been in existence since at least 2014.

As for the current Indians, news of their name change to "Guardians," as well as the team's accompanying logos and uniforms, were met with a mixed reaction on social media. The Indians said that they conducted 140 hours of interviews with fans, community leaders and front office personnel before settling on its new name.



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