The Detroit Red Wings logo is one of the most iconic and recognizable team symbols in all of sports. However, that same logo was recognized this weekend in a place where you would least expect to find it.
On Saturday, protesters at the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, were seen carrying signs with a slightly modified version of the Red Wings logo:
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The logo was altered to make the spokes on the winged-wheel appear more like swastikas, instead of spokes.
The team released a statement condemning the use of their logo, and threatened legal action: “The Detroit Red Wings vehemently disagree with and are not associated in any way with the event taking place today in Charlottesville, Va. The Red Wings believe that hockey is for everyone, and we celebrate the great diversity of our fan base and our nation. We are exploring every possible legal action as it pertains to the misuse of our logo in this disturbing demonstration.”
The NHL also released a statement condemning use of the logo, “We are obviously outraged by the irresponsible and improper use of our intellectual property. … We will take immediate and all necessary steps to ensure the use is discontinued as promptly as possible, and will vigorously pursue other remedies, as appropriate.”
Some mystery surrounds the question of who was using the modified logo, and why they decided to use it. However, a hockey fan site called, Russian Machine Never Breaks, believes the logo has been adopted by a Michigan-based group known as the Detroit Right Wings.
Though, the Detroit Free Press was unable to confirm that the Right Wings were in Charlottesville on Saturday. According to USA Today, requests for comment from the various social media accounts affiliated with the Detroit Right Wings were not answered.