ST. LOUIS, Mo. – WWE star and actor Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is part of a group that has purchased the XFL for $15 million, according to Variety’s sister site Sportico. He is splitting the cost of the league with RedBird Capital investor Gerry Cardinale.
“With my trail blazing partner Dany Garcia & Red Bird Capital, we have acquired the XFL. With gratitude & passion I’ve built a career with my own two hands and will apply these callouses to our @xfl2020 brand. Excited to create something special for the fans!” writes Dwayne Johnson on Twitter.
The Batlehawks were wildly popular during their short first season in St. Louis. Fox 2 Sports Director Martin Kilcoyne spoke with Battlehawks President Kurt Hunzeker after the league folded in April. He said that St. Louis was the most successful of all of the XFL franchises.
The league said in April that it was not insulated “from the harsh economic impacts and uncertainties caused by the COVID-19 crisis.”
There were more than 3 million viewers during the league’s debut. They were drawing about 1.5 million viewers in the fifth and final week before the shutdown.
“Whoever purchases the assets you have a treasure trove of content, plans and strategies ready to go,” says Kurt Hunzeker, Former President St. Louis Battlehawks. “Even with football operations starting to build out the bubble model. Which seems to me the best way to go in 2021 given the success of MLS, hockey and basketball. Obviously, the problems baseball is having. You can execute a bubble tournament for the XFL.”
A bankruptcy court still needs to approve the sale. The proposed sale is supposed to be complete Friday.
There’s no mention of when play would return or if the beloved St. Louis Battlehawks would get a chance to play in the Dome at America’s Center once again.
The XFL’s parent company originally listed the league with assets and liabilities in the range of about $10 million to $50 million. The league was set to go up for auction today.