Lee Ann Herring-Olvedo MESPORTS SOUTH
Can you smell what “The Rock” is cooking? Well, it must be something pretty damn good we can now add football owner to Johnsons’ many attributes. Just hours before the league was set to be put on the auction chopping block The Rock, RedBird Capital, and Dany Garcia ( Johnsons former wife and business partner) have saved the day to the tune of $15 million.
Johnson sees a bright future and is ready to go to work even in these chaotic times making this statement on his investment, “The acquisition of the XFL with my talented partners … 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. 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.”
Perhaps the third time will finally be a charm for the XFL to be able to get a full force chance. After being revived by WWE & Alpha Entertainment Mogul, Vince McMahon in 2018 following a failed attempt in 2001 things finally seemed to be promising for their launch then 2020 struck hard. The league launched with eight teams in major cities and household football names in the front office and coaching staff.
However, only five games they were forced to cancel the remainder of the season due to the pandemic. It seemed that even this the brand and the XFL family were hopeful that they would not be hit by the curse of another shutdown. A month after the league forced to shut down the XFL filed chapter 11 bankruptcy.
With the state of everything, it is still tough to tell just what the XFL will eventually become but time is definitely on their side. I think taking the brand back with the new ownership of Johnson, Garcia, and Redbird Capital speaks volumes of the potential the XFL could with the right game plan and playbook. The business and sports game between these three partners is strong and ready to devote the resources to build the brand. I think in all this we have seen the rise of other sports take their place amidst the mainstream and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. I think Vince McMahon couldn’t have scripted a better ending to this wouldn’t you agree?
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Lee Ann Herring-Olvedo is a veteran SEC sports journalist and NFL beat writer. She is our Sr. Editor and columnist for MESPORTS digital. A Brown University graduate who loves good cigars, good games, and a smooth glass of bourbon — not necessarily in that order. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter @Misskyus2011