The XFL, or the Xtreme Football League, is a professional American football league that was originally founded in 2001 by Vince McMahon, the chairman of WWE, and NBC Sports. The league aimed to offer an alternative to the National Football League (NFL) during the NFL’s off-season and featured various rule changes, including a “scramble” for the ball at the start of each game instead of a traditional coin toss and a rule that required all players to stand during the national anthem.

Seattle Sea Dragons wide receiver Blake Jackson points toward the crowd during the second half of the game against the Vegas Vipers
Blake Jackson points toward the crowd during the second half of the game against the Vegas Vipers (Photo by Ali Gradischer/Getty Images)

However, the XFL’s first season did not perform as well as expected, with declining ratings and attendance numbers leading to financial difficulties for the league. The league was eventually disbanded after its first season, with plans to relaunch in 2020 under the ownership of McMahon’s Alpha Entertainment.

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The XFL 2.0 season began in February 2020 but was cut short due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In August 2020, Alpha Entertainment filed for bankruptcy, effectively ending the XFL’s second run. 

However, in August 2021, it was announced that the XFL had been purchased by a group led by Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. Two years later, the league returned and the new owners claim to be in it for the long haul.

Despite its brief lifespan, the XFL has left a mark on the world of football and sports entertainment, with its unique rules and approach to the game inspiring other leagues and organizations.

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The Los Angeles Xtreme won the Million Dollar Game on April 21st, 2001 in the inaugural XFL Championship game. The Xtreme won 38-6 over the San Francisco Demons. 

The Arlington Renegades will face the DC Defenders in the first XFL Championship under the new leadership. The game will be played in San Antonio, Texas on May 13th. 

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