In one of the most surprising twists of the sports year, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, in partnership with Dany Garcia and investment firm RedBird Capital, purchased the XFL from WWE for a reported $15M.
The league, which was set to be auctioned off as part of bankruptcy proceedings, never managed to make it to the gavel as Johnson partnered with Garcia and RedBird to purchase the league outright, according to a report from Sportico. There has been no announcement whether there is a plan to relaunch the league, or if the acquisition was simply a play for its assets. Regarding the purchase Johnson said:
“The acquisition of the XFL with my talented partners, Dany Garcia and Gerry Cardinale, 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,” said Dwayne Johnson. “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.”
RedBird has made numerous sports-related purchases in recent years, including buying part of the Yankees’ YES network, French soccer team Toulouse, as well as investments in NFL properties. However, this recent purchase will make the most waves. Not only is this now the third attempt to do something with the XFL name, but involving The Rock will undoubtedly produce more interest in the league in whatever capacity it returns.
Perhaps most importantly this represents the unification of The Rock and Ballers which was naturally going to happen. Soon a giant cinematic universe will revolve around The Rock, with him dabbling into owning everything — then he will eventually become president of the United States, because I’m sure that will be a thing in a decade or so as well.