Zion Church Cries Foul In Trademark Dispute With Adidas

ZION, Ill. (CBS) —  There’s a legal battle underway between church and court — the basketball court, that is.

And Bulls star Derrick Rose is being drawn into the middle of it.

CBS 2’s Derrick Blakley reports on the dispute between a small, Lake County congregation and an international sportswear giant.

Rose plays for the Bulls but plays in Adidas shoes. His Rose Two line of shoes are promoted under the Adidas “Adi-Zero” trademark.

That’s where Pastor E. James Logan of Christian Faith Fellowship Church comes in.

His logo — the words “add-a-zero” inside a Christian cross — was intended to boost fundraising. It’s featured on caps, T-shirts and sweatshirts.

Even though the church used the slogan first, but Adidas wants them to give it up.

“The church went and they registered the trademark in the patent and trademark office exactly as they should,” church attorney Richard Young says. “Adidas started using the mark after that. Then, about two years ago, Adidas decided they wanted to register it. And so they went to the patent office and the patent office said no.”

The corporation is asking the patent office to cancel the church’s trademark altoghether, arguing it doesn’t use it enough.

Not so, says the pastor. And he’s fighting back, making a direct written appeal to Rose.

“I kind of hoped he’d intervene, intercede so to speak, and be a voice of reason with Adidas and say, ‘Let’s just kind of resolve this with the church,’” Logan says.

So far, there’s been no response from Adidas or Rose, even in the wake of his new, $95 million dollar contract.

Adidas has offered to pay the church to drop the logo, but it’s only offered $5,000.  So, unless Adidas adds a zero or two of its own, the pastor says, he has no intention of abandoning a logo that was inspired by God.

More from Derrick Blakley
  • Zatso

    Our football forefathers definitely wanted a separation of church and footwear’

  • JeanSC

    “Adi-Zero” doesn’t mean anything catchy to me. I’m on the side of the church, whose exhortation makes sense and did come first. $5,000 from Adidas to wrest it? That’s like buying Manhattan for $24 worth of beads.

  • The Dark Lord of Grammar

    ‘Even though the church used the slogan first, but Adidas wants them to give it up.’ This is not a proper sentence. You need to remove either the ‘Even though’ or the ‘but’

    Also, altogether is spelled incorrectly.

    • Pamela Kneeland

      So what if it is ot the proper spelling? It is the fact that a big company wants the church to give it them ,why should they?

      • The Grammar Jew

        Pamela, The Dark Lord of Grammar never said there was a spelling issue. The sentence is grammatically incorrect.

  • dskofstad

    As a fellow believer, I would caution the pastor that this kind of publicity may be giving the impression that the church is just about getting into peoples’ pockets. Plenty of people already use that as an easy excuse to stay away.

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