Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 27, 2012 10:39 AM
While Kobe Bryant just passed Michael Jordan's All-Star scoring mark, it won't diminish Jordan's stature or legacy. When most people think of Jordan, they think of his six championships with the Chicago Bulls, his five NBA MVP awards, and his leaping image that’s been immortalized by Nike as Jordan Brand.
Many today think of Jordan and see dollar signs around one of the biggest sports brands and athletes of all time. Inevitably, that leads to legal tussles to protect the Jordan cash cow. That's why the represent the majority owner of the worst team in the NBA, the Charlotte Bobcats, has sued Chinese sportswear and shoe manufacturer Qiaodan Sports for wrongful use of his trademark.
As Bloomberg notes, "Qiao Dan" is Chinese for Jordan and the basketball star is not happy that somebody else is using it. Not by a long shot.
“I am taking this action to preserve ownership of my name and my brand,” Jordan said in a statement on his website, where he also elaborates on the reasons why he's taking legal action against Qiaodan and posted a video statement, at top.
China isn’t the easiest place to fight intellectual-property rights, Microsoft's battles to stamp out piracy in the market attests. But things may be changing.
Former NBA star and Chinese-born Yao Ming recently won a victory over the Chinese company Yao Ming Era and the company had to fork over around $48,000 to the 7'6" star. That may not be a lot of cash for a guy who used to make millions annually, but the point — that NBA stars won't play ball with trademark trespassers — is much more important.