*Will the third time be a charm for the XFL? After shutting down in April after COVID halted its comeback season, the league looks to be making yet another return thanks to actor and former WWE star Dwayne Johnson.
ESPN tweeted Monday morning that a group including Johnson had agreed to buy the league for $15 million after it declared Chapter 11 bankruptcy April 13. The league had been searching for a buyer ever since.
In April, the league suspended operations and laid off nearly all of its staff after canceling its season just five games in as part of the nationwide shutdown due to coronavirus concerns.
Along with Johnson, his business partner and ex-wife Dany Garcia and RedBird Capital Partners are investors in the deal, which is still subject to bankruptcy court approval.
“The acquisition of the XFL with my talented partners, Dany Garcia and Gerry Cardinale, is an investment for me that’s rooted deeply in two things – my passion for the game and my desire to always take care of the fans,” said Dwayne Johnson. “With pride and gratitude for all that I’ve built with my own two hands, I plan to apply these callouses to the XFL, and look forward to creating something special for the players, fans, and everyone involved for the love of football.”
Johnson, back when he was The Rock, did a promo for the very first XFL game (between the New York/ New Jersey Hitman and the Las Vegas Outlaws) in 2001.
The XFL first shut down after one season in 2001. Last year’s revival. after owner Vince McMahon invested $200 million, featured eight teams, including the undefeated Houston Roughnecks, the New York Guardians and the Los Angeles Wildcats.