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  • Thursday, February 3, 2000

    WWF to launch football league

     NEW YORK (CP) -- The WWF is ready to play ball.

     Wrestling kingpin Vince McMahon announced today that he is kicking off the XFL, a spring league that will start with eight teams in 2001. And he promised that the new circuit will be no-holds barred football.

     "Some suggest that the NFL stands for the no fun league, the XFL is going to be the extra fun league," he said. "This will be a blast. . . . We will take you places to where the NFL is afraid to take you."

     McMahon said sports fans are already going into football withdrawal, just days after the Super Bowl.

     "I personally think figure skating sucks," he said.

     Eight teams will open the season a year from now. Six of those teams will be New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Washington, D.C., Miami and Orlando, Fla. The other two will be announced in the next 60 days.

     There was no immediate word on teams in Canada.

     McMahon said the venture will cost $100 million to start up. But McMahon said he is confident the new league will become profitable within three years.

     And he had a crude response to analysts who had downgraded their opinon of WWF's stock, suggesting they kiss his behind.

     There will be a 10-game regular season, starting the first week of February with the championship contest in April.

     The league will be operated as a single entity, with the league owning the clubs. Salary structure would depend on the CFL's TV deal but McMahon said the championship game may eventually be shown on pay-per-view.

     The WWF isn't looking for partners in this venture, McMahon said.

     "We don't play well with others."

     McMahon said unlike pro wrestling, which is scripted, XFL games will be decided on the field.

     "The WWF is 100 per cent entertainment," McMahon said. "The XFL will be 100 per cent sport."

     

     

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