Vince McMahon held a press conference on Thursday afternoon to confirm the return of the XFL for early 2020.
McMahon emphasized that this version of the XFL would be “fan friendly” as well as “player friendly” as they would draw on the advice of medical officials, members of the media, and fans to present both an entertaining and safe product.
McMahon was vague in regards to distribution, stating that no talks had taken place for either a traditional television outlet or a digital platform but stated that interest is there. The distribution will be the biggest factor to the early success or failure of the league with sports television rights at a premium.
The league is set to begin play in late January / early February after the conclusion of the 2019-2020 NFL season with 40-man rosters, a ten-game season and playoffs.
McMahon stated this league would not be about politics or social issues, however, when pressed about players being required to stand for the national anthem he responded that the anthem is a “time-honored tradition” and indicated that players would be expected to stand for the anthem.
He was also very hardline regarding the tolerance level of players that have any type of legal infractions. He noted that “if you have a DUI, you won’t play in the XFL”.
Regarding his role within the XFL, he said this would be one of the few times he would out as the frontman for the league and would be hiring “professionals that know what they are doing” and he would be taking a background role with the league. He also added that this would not affect his duties as chairman and C.E.O. of World Wrestling Entertainment nor would there will any crossover between the WWE and the XFL.
Following the announcement of the news, the WWE stock finished the day at $34.13 after opening on Thursday morning at $33.61.
Wai Ting and I have a “Breaking News” audio show up on the site with our thoughts on the press conference and the viability of the XFL.