NBA: Leonard sues Nike in logo flap -- report

Field Level Media/Reuters

Posted at Jun 04 2019 10:45 AM

NBA: Leonard sues Nike in logo flap -- report 1
Toronto Raptors forward Kawhi Leonard (2) handles the ball against Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry (30) during the third quarter in game two of the 2019 NBA Finals at Scotiabank Arena. Dan Hamilton, USA TODAY Sports/Reuters

Kawhi Leonard is suing Nike, claiming the company is taking credit for creating the logo that appeared on his Nike-endorsed apparel, according to the Portland Business Journal.

In a lawsuit filed Monday in the United States District Court in Southern California, the Toronto Raptors star contends he designed the logo but that Nike claimed otherwise in a copyright registration.

In the nine-page legal filing, Leonard contends the "Klaw" logo derived from sketches he drew before turning pro and gave Nike permission to place "on certain merchandise" during his endorsement deal with the company. 

He said Nike did not have his OK to apply for the copyright registration.

Leonard endorsed Nike until his contract expired last fall. He signed a subsequent deal with New Balance.

The New York Times reported last week that the Los Angeles Clippers - one of several teams expected to pursue Leonard in free agency when it opens next month - had "quietly looked into the feasibility of purchasing the portion of the rights to Leonard's 'Klaw' logo that is still owned by Nike."

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