The revived XFL has announced the eight home cities for its return to the sports stage in 2020.
Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, St. Louis, Seattle, Tampa Bay, and Washington, D.C. will all host teams for the league, which once again hopes to leverage the NFL’s fanbase, while offering a faster-paced game of football.
Season tickets are now on sale for all teams. The first games of the 10-week season will be played the weekend of Feb. 8-9, 2020.
Vince McMahon, CEO of World Wrestling Entertainment, is once again overseeing the league and is funding it personally. The XFL was his idea in 2001, when the then-WWF and NBC partnered on the venture. As before, it will play during the NFL’s off season. The new incarnation will also offer cross-platform viewing experiences.
“After months of research and consideration, we’re thrilled to announce the cities and venues of the XFL’s eight inaugural teams,” said Oliver Luck, XFL commissioner and CEO at a press conference. “We are committed to being ingrained in the local community and extremely fortunate that our teams will have world-class facilities to call home.”
The new XFL launches as the NFL has found itself the subject of severe criticism in the past few years. Many fans have objected to players taking a knee during the National Anthem (while others have praised them for doing so). The league has also seen the impact of sexual misconduct allegations (one of which led to the Carolina Panthers going up for sale).
It comes with some baggage, though. The original league flamed out in one season, due to a short timeline, technical issues, untrained announcers and overly sexualized cheerleaders.