The Team Name And Logo Are Sports Franchises’ Most Valuable Assets

The logo is the thing.

On April Fool’s Day 1987, Major League Baseball Commissioner Peter Ueberroth tossed out a notion looking for an answer at a function announcing that MLB had a new film partner. On that April 1st date, Ueberroth had a simple but complex question. What is the most important asset for any sports team? Any sports league? Ueberroth’s answer? The logo of the brand name. Ueberroth’s logic was simple, owners come and go, front office personnel come and go. Players, no matter how beloved or how important to a team’s success, come and go. The logo and the name remain long after everyone else comes and goes. In 2020, 33 years after Ueberroth explained the importance of the logo, the National Football League’s Washington franchise owner Dan Snyder has apparently decided to change his team’s brand name and logo. Major League Baseball’s Cleveland ownership is reviewing its brand name. The Canadian Football League’s Edmonton franchise is reviewing its brand name. The National Hockey League’s Chicago Blackhawks ownership has defended its brand name and logo saying the team is honoring a person of historic importance, Black Hawk of the Illinois Sac and Fox Nation.

Snyder apparently is going to rebrand his team the old fashion way. He will decide the name much like the original owner George Preston Marshall did when he named the Boston team the Braves in 1932 and changed the name in 1933. He kept the name when he moved the team to Washington in 1937. There doesn’t appear to be any mulling over what various focus groups think of names or logos. There will be a quick renaming and then the process begins of having a new brand and selling it to the public. Snyder won’t have to worry about the new name or logo and sales. He has a loyal fan base who will buy merchandise. Ueberroth was right the brand and the logo are the most important things a team has.

(AP Photo/Steve Helber, File)
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