Nike sued Reebok this week for using Tim Tebow’s name on Jets apparel after the popular quarterback was traded from the Denver Broncos to the New York Jets last week.
According to ESPN.com, Nike Inc. filed suit against Reebook in U.S. District Court on Wednesday (March 28) for using Tebow’s name on Jets-related apparel without permission since his trade.
Nike, via court documents, claims that Reebok misappropriated publicity rights, interfered with business relationships, and unjustly enriched itself before getting permission from Tebow to launch the new products.
The company seeks unspecified damages
The Tebow trade occurred just before Nike replaces Reebok on Sunday (April 1) as the supplier of NFL team uniforms.
The lawsuit said Reebok did not respond to demands to cease Tebow apparel sales after a Tebow representative sent a letter to the company on Friday (March 23); and Nike says its rival shipped large volumes of Tebow-related apparel to retailers this week, damaging its ability to capitalize on a “unique and short-lived opportunity” during a normally slow time for NFL merch sales.
Reebok has not commented on the suit as of press time.
New Nike uniforms are for all 32 NFL teams is set to be unveiled next week, kicking off a five-year deal for Nike to be the league’s exclusive provider of on-field apparel, including game uniforms and sideline apparel.
Reebok had been the supplier for the last decade.