In what could be the most bizarre development in the ongoing debate over the Washington Redskins nickname, TMZ reports that a neighbor of team owner Dan Snyder, Aris Mardirossian, has trademarked the name "Washington Bravehearts."
The report states that the trademark application filed by Mardirossian says that he plans to use the name for "entertainment in the nature of football games."
Mardirossian, who reportedly lives on the same block as Snyder in Potomac, Md., is an affluent patent investor who developed a relationship with Snyder a few years ago when the two men battled the county in an effort to cut down trees on their lots.
TMZ's research also reveals that both Snyder and Mardirossian attended the University of Maryland, albeit at different times.
Mardirossian reportedly registered the name on Oct. 17, the same day he developed a company called "Washington Brave Hearts, LLC."
The Redskins organization was quick to shoot down any possible connection to the trademark, according to Grant Paulsen of 106.7 The Fan:
We simply don't know enough right now to jump to any accurate conclusions as to what this news means for the future of the Redskins nickname, but it goes without saying that we haven't heard the last of this issue.
With President Barack Obama offering that he would "think about changing" the moniker, and prominent media members boycotting use of the nickname, the pressure on Snyder to rename the Redskins appears to be mounting.
Snyder, however, has not wavered, repeatedly saying that the franchise will "never" part ways with the name.
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