Months after Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and new chairwoman Dany Garcia combined to take over the XFL, the company has entered “formal talks” with the Canadian Football League on a potential partnership as both leagues look toward a return to the field this year or next.
Both leagues had to cancel their 2020 seasons during the pandemic due to a lack of funding, with the CFL failing to secure bailout money from the Canadian government and the XFL declaring bankruptcy after mismanagement and allegations of fraud on the part of former owner Vince McMahon.
Per Kevin Seifert of ESPN, the XFL is currently making plans for a reintroduction in 2022, while the CFL already announced a 2022 calendar with preseason games set to begin in May. However, Canada remains on a more strict lockdown than the United States, making it unclear whether that will go on as planned or to what extent revenue will return if fans are not allowed into games as spectators.
The NFL has no real competitors worldwide, as no other professional American football league has gotten off the ground in a legitimate way since the NFL and AFL merged in the 1960s. A partnership between the XFL and CFL would be an interesting start, and the new Fan Controlled Football, which is based in fantasy sports and sports betting, already launched this year.