The XFL’s new ownership group has made its first big and arguably most important announcement. What does a Spring 2022 relaunch mean for the league?
The XFL is returning. The when and where is not a secret anymore. The spring of 2022 is the announced relaunch date. Now that a definitive timeframe exists. The speculation of when the next XFL season will start is over.
Here is the league’s full official statement released on Thursday morning.
XFL Announces Return to the Field in 2022
Decision allows ample time for the league and its new owners to develop and execute a strategic and innovative plan for the relaunch
STAMFORD, CT – October 1, 2020 – The XFL today announced that the league will return to the field for the 2022 season. The new ownership group and league executives are in the process of finalizing next steps for the relaunch with more details to be shared in the coming weeks and months.
The announcement was made by Dany Garcia and Dwayne Johnson through a video shared across their social media platforms and available here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2ai5RJDYUzw&feature=youtu.be
“The XFL represents the idea of ultimate opportunity; it’s a league of soul and culture, anchored by the pursuit of dreams and love for the game, that we couldn’t be more proud to lead,” said Garcia and Johnson. “Every XFL player, coach, city, and fan is our top priority and we couldn’t be more excited to champion them in an electrifying 2022 season. We are the new XFL—hungry, humble and no one will outwork us.”
“For the love of football and for the safety of our players and fans, we’ll be back on the field in 2022,” said Jeffrey Pollack, XFL President, and COO. “The opportunity in front of us, with our new ownership, is simply too big to rush back. We want to do this properly with care and thought for everyone who loves football, especially our players, coaches, partners, and fans.”
In August 2020, Dany Garcia, Dwayne Johnson, and RedBird Capital Partners acquired substantially all of the assets of Alpha Entertainment LLC, the parent company of the XFL.
So what does 2022 mean for for the league’s future, Let’s break it down.
GOODBYE 2021 SEASON
The toughest pill to swallow, specifically for many of the league’s former employees who have been waiting on standby in the hopes that the XFL would turn the lights back on and push forward.
Former players and coaches in the XFL wanted a 2021 season to happen. Now that it’s off the table. They are all left in limbo to ponder their next moves. The fans may have received clarity about the XFL’s return to the field, but for football coaches and players, the waiting game and uncertainty continue.
XFL Players received emails this morning from the league. In an effort to provide some clarity and reasoning behind the 2022 announcement.
Multiple sources have reached out to me to indicate that June of 2021 may be the timeframe when the football hiring and rehiring process can begin. If the XFL returns to action in February of 2022. It would give the league an eight-month window to get teams ready to play.
As chronicled in the past, the XFL will have a challenging task maintaining the continuity and momentum it developed. However, having XFL President Jeffrey Pollack on board will help significantly in the transition.
Not having a 2021 season doesn’t close the door on league happenings or activity, notwithstanding all the organizational and roster moves. The XFL is expected to introduce content that serves as a leadup to on-field play in the spring of 2022.
There is already talk of a documentary-styled show, chronicling the XFL’s owners and teams months before the league returns to the field. For those who want to see the TV show Ballers come to life in the XFL. You are going to get it.
Simply getting back on the field and playing is not a part of the XFL’s grand marketing plan. The entire strategy is multi-layered and complicated, and the background of Dwayne Johnson and Dany Garcia is a huge reason why the league’s overall presentation plan works for 2022 rather than 2021.
HELLO 2022 SEASON
“Too big to rush back” The statement made by XFL President/COO Jeffrey Pollack today. It’s true in more ways than one.
The 2021 season was considered and discussed but it isn’t happening for a variety of reasons. Chief among them are time, the financial aspect and most importantly, the public health crisis.
The latter ties into all of the above. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, any sports leagues in today’s landscape have to dedicate all of their efforts to keep their players, coaches, partners, and fans safe.
The top priority for every league right now is having extensive and strict medical testing and guidelines. You can’t have a league without it. Rushing into it, head-on would require a considerable amount of resources, discipline, and time and would ensure a high level of risk.
By 2022, the hope is that the current pandemic world, we are living in has improved. In the form of a potential vaccine, and advanced testing/treatment. Having fans back in the stadiums and keeping everyone safe are attainable goals in 2022.
As chronicled here at XFLNewsHub. The business side of the XFL is also a significant reason why the league is pushing towards a 2022 season. There are so many moving parts that need to be lined up correctly. The XFL will not succeed in the long-term if it doesn’t become a viable business.
Revenue streams in a 2021 season were going to be limited at best for the XFL. From ticket sales to sponsorship deals to broadcast rights. XFL 3.0 can’t afford financially to have limited revenue streams. Established leagues like the NFL, NBA, NHL and MLB can absorb the financial hits they are taking because of the pandemic. The XFL can not.
The key here is finding the right partners who share your vision and ambition to create an awesome experience for the fans.XFL Co-Owner Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson
One of the answers to why 2022 over 2021 is in the quote above. “Finding the right partners”. XFL 3.0 is not there yet. The league doesn’t have all the partnerships it will need in order to launch play the right way.
From what I have been told. What Dany Garcia and Dwayne Johnson have planned for the XFL is extensive and can’t be done in just a few months. The need for the right partners to make their plan a reality is a must.
There is still legal wrangling behind the scenes designed to ensure potential partnerships with venues and other league partners. In many ways, the XFL is starting over in this regard and because of Dany Garcia, RedBird Capital, and Dwayne Johnson’s multi-layered plans. It’s going to require more than one partner to get it all done correctly.
Time is a luxury that Vince McMahon gave the XFL from 2018-2020. The time the league had to prepare paid off in the quality of the product. The idea behind going in 2022 rather than 2021 has the same goal in mind.
The XFL is not going to be a traditional sports league. The truth is, and the charm behind supporting it in the past was because it never was. A lot will change and happen between now and 2022, but the innovative spirit of the league will remain and evolve. The road back to the XFL begins, again.
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October 1, 2020 at 6:16 pm
This is great news, it is the first sign that the ownership group is really, really serious about establishing a first rate stand alone league. The decision to restart in 2022, allows time for our nation to resolve the myriad of issues we currently face. This pause also allows the ownership group the needed time to solidify current markets and contemplate the establishment of new ones. As far as the latter is concerned, it is my hope and that of many, many other people in this state that Birmingham is in that conversation. This from a Birmingham Iron fan. ” FORGE ON “
Birmingham XFL fan
October 1, 2020 at 10:03 pm
And besides, Protective Stadium probably won’t be done by February 2021 anyway.
October 4, 2020 at 7:45 pm
Birmingham would be a fantastic XFL market!