He had a little help, but Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, who is arguably one of the biggest stars in the world, put up $15 million of his own cash in order to save the XFL from bankruptcy, by doing this he also became one of the main shot callers in the league and we can expect he will work very hard to make it work.
Most things that he touches, even terrible movies, tend to do very well, and he is well-known for his tremendous work ethic. This could be a very good thing and the timing couldn't be better.
The XFL just can't buy some luck. Their first attempt at becoming a league was a disaster because Vince McMahon injected it with a bit too much WWE. It was kind of a joke and the amount of people interested quickly diminished and the season ended with a whimper. Basically nobody cared and the gimmicks just got worse and worse including when there was this one feature where you would be let into the cheerleaders' locker room at halftime for some saucy, staged girl on girl action. While I am sure this is something that some people would be excited by, everyone already had the internet and if you are into that sort of thing it is easy enough to fine.
People wanted to watch football because they like football, if they want to see softcore porn there are plenty of places to go and look for that. It was a dumb idea and it, like most of the other gimmicks, it was a total failure.
I'd like to believe that The Rock will not be pulling stunts like this at the helm.
When the XFL re-launched earlier this year it was actually doing very well. Much better than expected actually as the amount of viewers per week was impressive to advertisers, and the fans were pleased to have much greater (and cheaper) access to games. Then the Rona happened and squashed all the momentum.
Let's not forget that Dwayne Johnson actually played football for the Miami Hurricanes and before getting involved in WWE he was shopping around for pro football contracts as well. Imagine going back in time and telling what was probably a "feeling rejected" Johnson that he should not sweat the fact that no pro teams were seriously interested in him, because one day he is going to be the owner of an entire league that directly competes with the NFL.
I said earlier that this was a "perfect time" for the XFL to make a re-launch and here is the reason why: As fans get increasingly upset with politics getting interjected into the game, many professional sports leagues like MLB, NFL, and especially the NBA are seeing fans leave them for good and even organizing boycotts of the leagues. The XFL has the opportunity to be the league that does the opposite of that and dejected football fans who only recently booed their own team for turning the field into a political statement could very well walk away and become fans of a new league.
The NFL is treading carefully at the moment and this new addition to the NFL roster may encourage them to finally get the politics out of sports. We'll have to wait and see.
I actually was enjoying the XFL season before it ended even though I didn't know who a vast majority of the players were. The games focused on quick action with slightly modified rules meant to make the game quicker and more exciting. I would say it was working and millions of other would-be fans were starting to get on board. No one could have seen Covid doing what it did to XFL and basically every other sport, but if we can get this situation under control (I would argue it always was under control and our meddling with the process only made it last longer,) we could see very large audiences for the XFL in 2021.
Will you be watching?