After WWE sent out a press release this morning proclaiming that CEO Vince McMahon would make a "major sports announcement" today at 3pm eastern time (8pm our time), rumours are rampant that said announcement will see the return of the infamous XFL.
— WWE (@WWE) January 25, 2018
The XFL is seen as one of McMahon's biggest failures (World Bodybuilding Federation anyone?), launched back in 2001 as a joint venture between the then-WWF and NBC after the American television network lost the rights to broadcast NFL games.
The idea was it would be a rival American Football league that would offer games during the NFL off season. Basically, it would be like if Sky Sports lost all rights the football and then teamed up with Vince McMahon to create a Premier League offshoot of players that weren't good enough to play in the top leagues and the games took place during May - July. Like a transfer window Sunday league featuring cameos from Triple H and Roman Reigns.
Although I'd take Jim Ross commentating of football matches over Martin Tyler any day!
The XFL only lasted one season but it has become a "cult classic", like a sports version of the Rocky Horror Picture Show, with an ESPN 30 for 30 film (This Was The XFL) being released about the break away league just last year, directed by league co-founder, Dick Ebersol's son, Charlie Ebersol.
The legacy of the XFL is still prevalent in the NFL today with innovations such as the skycam (also used now in "soccer"), players being mic'ed-up, sideline interviews and the general more "intimate' way of shooting coverage of American Football, all things that were originally seen in the XFL.
It was reported in several US news outlets (and originally broken by journalist Brad Shepard) at the end of 2017 that Vince McMahon had created a new company called "Alpha Sports Entertainment", which is due to be the parent company for the new XFL. These early rumours also suggested that McMahon would announce the football league's return on January 25th 2018, which is of course today.
Early reports of what McMahon's announcement will contain say that although it will announce the return of the XFL, that the league won't officially re-launch until 2020 and will partner this time with CBS Sports.
If you are interested in watching Vince's press conference and live announcement you can do so through the following links:
Live stream links: