When WWE chairman and CEO Vince McMahon launched the second iteration of the XFL this year, he sounded confident that the league could outlast the original version, which folded after a single season.
As it turns out, the new league didn’t even last that long.
The XFL suspended operations Friday morning and laid off nearly its entire staff, ESPN reported. The move comes after the league canceled its remaining regular-season games last month after five games in response to the coronavirus pandemic. At the time, the league said it was committed to returning in 2021.
But that situation appears to have changed. XFL CEO Jeffrey Pollack informed league staff members of the news during a conference call Friday morning, a source told ESPN. During the call, Pollack implied the league was going out of business. The league has no plans to return next year, ESPN reported.
Support the independent voice of Dallas and help keep the future of Dallas Observer free.
“It’s done,” the staffer said. “It’s not coming back.”
The Dallas Renegades finished 2-3 in the league’s pandemic-shortened inaugural season, coming in second in the West Division behind the undefeated Houston Roughnecks.
As recently as February, oddsmakers said the Renegades represented Dallas’ best hope at a pro football championship in decades.
Keep the Dallas Observer Free… Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who’ve won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists’ Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism’s existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our “I Support” membership program, allowing us to keep covering Dallas with no paywalls.
Silas Allen has been the Dallas Observer‘s news editor since March 2019. Before coming to Dallas, he worked as a reporter and editor at the Oklahoman in Oklahoma City. He’s a Missouri native and a graduate of the University of Missouri.