• Loading stock data...
Friday, July 12, 2024

Commanders Still Face Legal Fight Over Former Name

  • Team, owner accused by non-profit of defamatory conduct
  • Lawsuit revives an issue long thought to be dead
Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

More than three years after shedding their former nickname, the Washington Commanders are still facing legal hurdles in connection with it. 

The Native American Guardian’s Association — a nonprofit organization aimed at advancing cultural and ethnic awareness — has filed a defamation lawsuit against the team in U.S. District Court in North Dakota, claiming a “coordinated and willful effort” by the team to defame and delegitimize the organization both verbally and in writing. 

NAGA previously started a Change.org petition seeking to restore the Redskins name — partly a response to what it perceived as cancel culture — that gained more than 132,000 signatures. 

The group is seeking $1.6 million in monetary damages. A key part of the lawsuit stems from a prior comment by Commanders sales manager Matthew Laux, who allegedly said in a text message that NAGA was “fake.” The lawsuit names the Commanders, Laux, team owner Josh Harris, and the National Congress of American Indians as defendants.

“NAGA’s members were huge Redskin fans precisely because they were the Redskins,” the lawsuit reads in part. “It was the only team in the NFL to honor an actual Native American. They were proud to watch professional football players engage in a different kind of battle, with the stoic face of Chief White Calf on their helmets.”

The Commanders said they “believe the complaint is without merit, and we will address the matter in court.”

Despite a home drubbing on Sunday to Buffalo, the Commanders remain in the midst of an organizational renaissance under Harris, with a wide range of commercial possibilities and potential facilities open to the franchise.

Linkedin
Whatsapp
Copy Link
Link Copied
Link Copied

What to Read

The Mississippi Department of Human Services on Monday sued retired NFL quarterback Brett Favre along with several other people and businesses to try to recover millions of misspent welfare dollars that were intended to help some of the poorest people in the U.S.

Judge in Mississippi Welfare Case Boots Brett Favre’s Lead Lawyer

The judge wrote he had a ‘pattern and practice of delicate deception.’
Oct 5, 2023; Landover, Maryland, USA; Washington Commanders owner Josh Harris with fans before the game against the Chicago Bears at FedExField.

Parts of the Commanders’ Past Finding Their Way Into Harris Era

The team is developing plans to honor former logo designer next season.
Tony Romo at the American Century Championship in Lake Tahoe

One of the Hottest Celebrity Wait Lists Is a Golf Tournament

The American Century Championship tees off Friday.
Apr 25, 2024; Detroit, MI, USA; NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell addresses the crowd during the 2024 NFL Draft at Campus Martius Park and Hart Plaza.

NFL Will Dip Its Toes in Private Equity by Year’s End

The league is likely to cap PE involvement in teams at 10%.
podcast thumbnail mobile
Front Office Sports Today

Warner Bros. Discovery Faces Final Decision on NBA Rights

0:00

Featured Today

NFLPA Report Cards Have Become the ‘Talk of the Locker Room’ Across..

NFLPA report cards have become the ‘talk of the locker room.’
July 7, 2024

The New College Sports Insiders Are Graphic Designers

Joe Tipton and Hayes Fawcett have become premier news-breakers on social media.
Oct 27, 2023; Sacramento, California, USA; A general of the Sacramento Kings logo on the court before the game against the Golden State Warriors at Golden 1 Center.
July 6, 2024

How Sports Went From Private Equity Punchline to Coveted Asset Class

Once an industry punchline, sports are now a coveted asset class.
July 2, 2024

Willie Mays’s Humility Was Key to His Genius

Mays took heat from all sides, and handled it his own way.
Jun 23, 2024; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates starting pitcher Paul Skenes (right) reacts as he talks with pitcher Jared Jones (left) after the seventh inning against the Tampa Bay Rays at PNC Park.

The Pirates Are Facing Political Pressure to Play Better

Pennsylvania state representatives call on the MLB club to boost its payroll.
July 12, 2024

Oakland Minor League Baseball Team Experimenting With Fan Ownership

The Ballers say more than 1,000 people have registered interest.
Apr 12, 2024; Sacramento, California, USA; Phoenix Suns guard Grayson Allen (8) and guard Devin Booker (1) and guard Bradley Beal (3) and forward Royce O'Neale (00) and forward Kevin Durant (35) huddle up before the final seconds of the fourth quarter at Golden 1 Center.
July 12, 2024

The Suns Have Entered the NBA’s Uncharted, Punitive Territory

The NBA’s first $400 million team between payroll and projected luxury tax.
Sponsored

TopSpin 2K25 Brings the Legends of Tennis to Your Living Room

2K sports is reviving a classic with TopSpin 2K25.
Jul 1, 2024; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; United States head coach Gregg Berhalter talks with midfielder Weston McKennie (8) during the second half of a Copa America match against Uruguay at Arrowhead Stadium.
July 11, 2024

U.S. Soccer May Go Big-Game Hunting for Its Next Men’s Head Coach

Gregg Berhalter was officially fired Wednesday.
July 10, 2024

Man United Faces Financial Struggles After Worst Premier League Season

The Premier League club sees its losses soar and revenues fall amid ongoing on-field issues.
July 9, 2024

Missouri Steps Up Efforts to Keep Chiefs, Royals From Moving to Kansas

Missouri Gov. Mike Parson is getting personally involved in efforts to retain the two local pro teams.
July 9, 2024

Celtics Owner Outlines Sale Plans and Bidding Process, Eyes Record Price

The team owner has eyes on setting a new sports industry record for a team sale.