According to trademark attorney Josh Gerben, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are attempting to block the New Orleans Saints from trademarking the phrase “Saints Cheer Krewe,” which is the name of their cheer squad.
The Buccaneers claim they have long used the word “krewe” for various purposes, including their loyalty club, promotion of the team, marketing services, clothing, trading cards, posters and calendars, not to mention their original ring of honor at Tampa Stadium, which was founded in 1991.
The Saints, meanwhile, only applied for the trademark in December 2021, shortly before they announced they were renaming their cheer squad from the “Saintsations.” The Buccaneers believe this gives them priority to trademark the word “krewe.”
The word “krewe” – defined as a private organization or social club that stages balls, festivals or parades – is best known for its association with Mardi Gras celebrations in New Orleans. However, it is also used in other celebrations along the Gulf of Mexico.
That includes the Gasparilla Pirate Festival, an annual event held in Tampa since 1904 that honors apocryphal Spanish pirate Jose Gaspar, who allegedly terrorized the coast of Spanish Florida in the late 19th and early 20th century and is a popular figure in local folklore.
Founding owner Hugh F. Culverhouse obviously leaned into the pirate theme when he and local sportswriters selected the Buccaneers’ nickname over more than 400 other submissions for a name-the-team contest in 1975.
That said, it’s likely the Buccaneers are attempting to block the trademark to avoid any potential legal action from the Saints over their use of the word “krewe” in the future should the latter ultimately be granted the trademark. Gerben believes the teams could settle the matter out of court, however.