Vince McMahon’s reboot of the XFL appears to have a major hurdle cleared to ensure it’s best chances for long-term success, as it has announced broadcast deals with the likes of ESPN, ABC, and FOX properties.
On Monday, the XFL announced multiyear agreements with ESPN and Fox Sports to televise games starting with its inaugural 2020 season, according to ESPN.
Per the agreement, XFL games will air weekly on broadcast TV (ABC and Fox) complemented by games on cable (ESPN, ESPN2, FS1 and FS2), and the schedule will featured back-to-back games each Saturday at 2 PM EST and tow games on Sunday afternoons.
It is a major landmark for the XFL, which is showing that a more patient approach to a launch is best, as opposed to the now-defunct AAF which seemed too intent on beating McMahon to the punch in launching a new professional football league that a lot of flaws surfaced that led to the league’s folding during it’s inaugural season this year.
“We look forward to showcasing the XFL on ESPN and ABC, including the kickoff game and championship, during the league’s inaugural season,” Burke Magnus, ESPN executive vice president, programming and scheduling said. “Vince McMahon and Oliver Luck are two of the sports industry’s most creative and experienced leaders, and they have exciting plans for this league. We believe in their vision for the XFL, which will be a great addition to our year-round commitment to football.”
“We welcome the XFL to the FOX Sports Family and are pleased to expand our relationship with Vince McMahon,” Eric Shanks, Fox Sports CEO and executive producer stated. “Football is in FOX Sports’ DNA and a key component of our programming strategy. Alongside Oliver Luck and his incredible team, we’re excited for the debut of the XFL on FOX Sports.”
“We are thrilled to partner with ESPN and FOX Sports, two innovative media companies with extensive experience in world-class football production that will undoubtedly help us reimagine football,” Vince McMahon, XFL founder and chairman said. “The XFL broadcast schedule provides us with incredible reach and makes it easy for fans to watch our games consistently every weekend.”
The XFL will officially re-launch on February 8th, 2020 and the league currently is comprised of teams in Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, St. Louis, Seattle, Tampa Bay, and Washingon, D.C..