DC Defenders

XFL officially cancels remainder of 2020 season, players eligible to sign with NFL clubs Monday

XFL officially cancels remainder of 2020 season, players eligible to sign with NFL clubs Monday

The inaugural season of the relaunched XFL is officially over.

Commissioner Oliver Luck sent out a statement Friday afternoon announcing the league would be canceling the remainder of its games in the 2020 season due to the growing concern surrounding the coronavirus pandemic. The league had suspended play last Friday.

"The COVID-19 pandemic, and the most recent local and state regulations, have left the XFL no choice but to officially cancel the remainder of the 2020 season," Luck wrote. "This decision has been made with the health and safety of the entire XFL family as our top priority."

The XFL's thank you letter did state that the league does plan to return in 2021 and play a full schedule. However, several of the stars in this year's XFL won't be playing in the league next year. That's because there will likely multiple NFL teams interested in signing them.

Despite the global pandemic, NFL free agency has been business as usual, operating as scheduled. And for those XFL players that hope to be signed by and NFL team, they will soon be eligible.

According to NFL Network's Tom Pelissero, XFL players will be able to sign with NFL clubs starting at 9 a.m. on Monday, March 23.

XFL stars like former Redskins quarterback Josh Johnson, as well as many others, the chance to sign with NFL teams way earlier than they could have under normal circumstances, as the XFL was slated to play through May.

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Report: XFL seeking new ownership after bankruptcy filing

Report: XFL seeking new ownership after bankruptcy filing

One month after filing for bankruptcy, the XFL is reportedly seeking new ownership in an attempt to save the league, according to Axios

Axios obtained documents that show an investment bank, Houlihan Lokey, managing the process, with letter of intent due by June 12 and formal bids due on July 6. 

The XFL claims to have been on pace to generate $46 million in revenue during its inaugural season. According to Axios' report, the league also had an average game attendance of 20,000 and 1.9 million average broadcast viewers for the nationally distributed games.

But the pandemic forced the league to cancel the rest of the season, suspend operations and lay off employees.

It was an abrupt move that left players, coaches and other team and league personnel wondering what's next. Some players parlayed XFL success to opportunities in the NFL, and former D.C. Defenders head coach Pep Hamilton landed on his feet with a professional gig with the Chargers. But that's not the case for the vast majority who were involved. 

If investors chose to revive the league, it would be done in the uncertain times currently swirling during the pandemic. Complicating matters is the indefinite timetable of the pandemic's duration. 

Dan Primack of Axios spoke to industry investors who are skeptical of somebody stepping forward to buy the entire league. But, those sources also acknowledged that sports can be unpredictable. 

"There are lots of people who are very rich but not rich enough to own an NFL team, so maybe someone will see this as the next best thing at a bargain price," one source said.

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Former XFL Defenders coach Pep Hamilton expected to go to Chargers, source says

Former XFL Defenders coach Pep Hamilton expected to go to Chargers, source says

Former XFL Defenders coach Pep Hamilton is heading to the Chargers to be the team's new quarterbacks coach though the deal is not yet official, a source with knowledge of the situation told NBC Sports Washington's Julie Donaldson. 

Hamilton led the Defenders to an exciting start in their inaugural season in Washington before league ceased operations earlier this month due to the effects of the COV-19 virus. 

Before his stint at the Defenders, Hamilton worked in various roles around the NFL, most recently as the assistant head coach and quarterbacks coach for the Cleveland Browns. Immediately before coming to D.C., he was the passing game coordinator and assistant head coach at the University of Michigan.

He started his career at Howard University, where he played quarterback as a student and returned as a quarterbacks coach.

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