Red Wings could use slogan ‘Baddest Bowl’

Louis Aguilar
The Detroit News

The phrase “Hockeytown” may get some competition. Owners of the Detroit Red Wings have applied to trademark the phrases “The Baddest Bowl” and “The Baddest Bowl in Hockey.”

The phrases most likely would be used as slogans, just as “Hockeytown” is used now, and not the name of the new arena. The naming rights of the new arena is a very lucrative separate deal.

“The Bowl” is the $627 million future home ice of the Wings that’s being built now along Woodward Avenue just north of downtown. The venue is expected to open in fall 2017. The Wings owner often touts the bowl-like structure of the massive venue as among its many innovative features. Center ice will be 40 feet below street level.

Olympia Entertainment filed to trademark the phrases “The Baddest Bowl” and “The Baddest Bowl in History” in October 2014 with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. How the phrases may be used is broad, as most trademark applications are. Olympia Entertainment is part of the billionaire-dollar empire owned by Mike Ilitch, owner of the Red Wings.

The trademark applications state the phrases can be used for “entertainment in the nature of professional hockey games,” and about a dozen other types of events that could take place in the new venue.

On Tuesday, officials confirmed the corporate name of the venue will be revealed in two months or less, indicating a company has won the multimillion dollar contest to put its name on the new arena.

Scoring the naming rights of a professional sports venue is one of the most sought-after goals in corporate America. The price tag for such a deal can range from $400 million for 20 years — in the case of the Barclays Center in New York City — to $66 million for 30 years, the price tag for Comerica Park in Detroit.

The Red Wings have recently shown a commitment to spotlighting local and state companies in a variety of sponsorships.

Last year, General Motor’s Chevrolet became the official vehicle of the Red Wings and the Fox Theatre in Detroit. The deal ended five years of corporate sponsorship of the Red Wings by Ram Truck that included Red Wings limited-edition pickups, a Ram-branded mural of goalie Jimmy Howard, on-ice sponsorship and other major branding inside Joe Louis Arena.

The deal expanded a longstanding relationship between Chevrolet and Olympia Entertainment. Chevrolet has long held the rights to showcasing its vehicles at Comerica Park, home of the Detroit Tigers, which also are owned by Ilitch. Chevy’s sponsorship includes putting two vehicles atop the fountain at Comerica.

Also last year, Meijer and Saint Joseph Mercy Health System were named as the first major sponsors of the Red Wings’ future home.

The two Michigan entities have signed on to “the highest level of commitment” for multiple years at the new venue, Olympia Entertainment said at the time of the announcement. Financial terms of the deals were not disclosed.

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