The XFL held a press conference on Wednesday morning at Metlife Stadium to announce the eight cities and stadiums that will be hosting the inaugural 2020 season.
Here are some highlights from the announcement.
* New Jersey Gov. Philip Murphy was introduced first. He talks about Metlife Stadium playing host to two NFL teams (New York Giants and New York Jets) and confirms it will be one of the eight cities part of the inaugural XFL season in 2020.
* Murphy talked about the WWE brand being very well known in households and one that has touched “millions of fans across generations and all over the world.” He talks about being thrilled that Metlife Stadium will host WrestleMania 35 next April.
* WWE Chairman and CEO Vince McMahon is then introduced. He is being touted as the XFL Founder and Chairman on a graphic. McMahon thanked Gov. Murphy and the eight partners that will be part of the 2020 season that are in attendance.
* He talked about it being nearly 20 years ago when they announced the first version of the XFL. McMahon said they were 20 years ahead of their time when they made that announcement and talks about so many things changing.
* McMahon reiterated that this will be a “financial commitment for the long-term.” He mentions distribution and a big demand for live sporting events. McMahon touts the XFL will bring a more innovative and exciting type of football presentation.
* He confirms that kickoff for the 2020 season will take place the weekend of February 8-9, the weekend after the conclusion of the Super Bowl. McMahon talks about so much changing in the last 20 years, including the growing use of social media.
* McMahon says what hasn’t changed is the love of football. He introduces someone who takes football very seriously: XFL Commissioner Oliver Luck. Luck is officially touted as the Commissioner and CEO of the XFL on a graphic.
* Luck talks about the XFL being open to input from key stakeholders and fans. “Together we re-imagine the game.” He feels waiting to launch until February of 2020 will give them time to get the game, fan experience and partnerships right.
* He uses the phrase “less stall, more ball” when it comes to the presentation of the XFL. Luck says more attention will be paid to player health and safety and that they will be seeking real-time fan interaction during the football games.
* Luck notes the huge popularity of the NFL and college football right now. He noted their research indicates fans want more football. The XFL will present a season every spring. Luck reveals they’ve met with NFL executives and other football leagues.
* He talks about forming a committee to “re-imagine” the game of football. Luck says they wanted to take the game of football they all know and love, but tweak it so that it was “familiar yet distinctive.” These meetings also included fan input.
* Luck says the game will include a shorter game clock in order to present a more fast paced presentation. The goal is to play a game in under three hours. Luck says they also plan to limit TV timeouts, game timeouts and simplifying the rules overall.
* Improving player safety is a big component. Luck says they formed a committee to “fine tune” the rule book after a series of research is presented to better protect the players. This is something already currently taking place in Mississippi.
* Luck says the XFL will have lower ticket prices compared to other leagues. They are developing a state of the art app allowing fans to stay connected better.
* The following cities and venues will be part of the inaugural 2020 season:
New York/New Jersey (Metlife Stadium)
Dallas (Globe Life Park)
Houston (TDECU Stadium)
Los Angeles (StubHub Center)
St. Louis (The Dome at America’s Center)
Seattle (CenturyLink Field)
Tampa Bay (Raymond James Stadium)
Washington, DC (Audi Field)