Many people in the Mixed Martial Arts (“MMA”) community may not know this, but veteran MMA fighters Dan Henderson and Matt Lindland have been locking horns over the name TEAM QUEST since February 2011. In the lawsuit, plaintiff Dan Henderson claims that he (along with Randy Couture) own the TEAM QUEST mark and that Matt Lindland has used and continues to use the TEAM QUEST mark without permission. Lindland in turn filed a counterclaim against Henderson alleging among other things that Henderson’s use of the TEAM QUEST mark was only in Japan and that Henderson basically gave permission to Lindland to use the mark.
Well, on June, On Monday, July 16, counsel for Henderson and Lindland had a hearing on Henderson’s motion for summary judgment (a motion asking the judge to basically say that Henderson wins and there is no way a jury could find otherwise, given the facts). The hearing was taken under submission (avoiding pun here) and we’ll see anywhere from 1 day to several months from now whether Dan Henderson wins without having to go through more discovery and possibly a trial.
I continue to wonder the extent to which this trademark battle has helped (or hindered) Henderson’s and Lindland’s training. Since this case began, we’ve seen Hendo rally off 3 amazing performances while we’ve seen Lindland falter in his most recent fight. I can’t imagine this lawsuit is not on these fighters’ minds but Henderson certainly seems to channel it well. I will continue to monitor this lawsuit but this will likely go several more rounds before we see a judge’s decision.