Confusion over whether or not New Zealand’s MMA fighters can use the silver fern emblem has been resolved after New Zealand Rugby (NZR) assured Auckland’s Metropolis Kickboxing that it didn’t increase any trademark issues with UFC.
Eugene Bareman, the co-founder and head coach of famed Auckland gym City Kickboxing, passionately defended his fighters’ rights to put on the silver fern when he spoke at a press convention on Thursday.
He had mentioned UFC had been contacted by NZR about trademark issues over the proposed use of the silver fern.
“The UFC is stopping us from utilizing the silver fern as a result of they’ve been contacted by the All Blacks (NZR) and requested to not use it as a result of it has been trademarked,” mentioned Bareman, whereas Adesanya displayed pictures of iconic All Black Richie McCaw carrying the silver fern adopted by pictures of his fighters battered and bruised after a bout.
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However NZR mentioned it had not been concerned in any discussions.
“NZR has not had any communications with the UFC round the usage of our logos,” the rugby union mentioned in a press release.
“We’re supportive of all sports activities folks representing New Zealand, however are protecting of our business IP together with the particularly designed NZR fern.’’
After a day of confusion, Metropolis Kickboxing issued a press release, saying the matter had been resolved after “miscommunication” between the UFC and a lawyer from the identical agency who take care of the All Blacks’ trademark rights.
“All Black administration contacted this afternoon to advise that nobody from their authorized or administration workforce has been involved with the UFC.
“The All Blacks have been very gracious underneath the circumstances and reassured us that they are very a lot supporters of our New Zealand UFC groups and different New Zealand sport groups going abroad and that is heartening for us.
“We’re additionally need to reiterate that we’re completely ardent supporters of the All Blacks and what they do for our nation.
“It seems there was miscommunication between the UFC and a lawyer from the identical legislation agency who take care of the All Blacks trademark rights.
“We’re happy to say we will probably be making our stroll to the cage as proud Kiwis with the Silver Ferns on our shoulder, as we have now for the previous 5 years.”
The UFC has not but commented publicly regardless of requests from Stuff.
As the house of middleweight champion Israel Adesanya and the remainder of New Zealand’s UFC contingent, Metropolis Kickboxing has established itself as one of many main fight sports activities gyms on the planet.
“Everyone who represents our nation internationally earns the appropriate, particularly my guys, and clearly I am biased, to characterize their nation and put on that image,” Bareman mentioned on the Thursday morning press convention.
“We put on it on our uniform, we put on it with nice satisfaction, and it does not matter whether or not you had been born in Nigeria or Samoa, it does not matter the place you come from. It is essential to us. It is one thing that we characterize.”
Bareman mentioned there was no means his fighters would stroll to the octagon with out the silver fern emblem on the shoulder of their combat attire.
Adesanya will attempt to add the light-heavyweight title to his middleweight crown against Jan Blachowicz at UFC 259 next Sunday (NZ time). Metropolis Kickboxing team-mates Carlos Ulberg and Kai Kara-France additionally function on the cardboard, whereas Brad Riddell and Shane Younger are scheduled to compete later in March.
Adesanya had mentioned earlier than Metropolis Kickboxing had introduced the matter was resolved: “We’re not making any cash from having the fern on our emblem, it does not generate me any cash. However the challenge that is behind it, it is what we fought for.
“I hope the boys on the sphere, the boys on the entrance line truly again us as properly on this, relatively than simply the fits attempting to do their little factor.”