TORONTO (AP) — Twenty-six years after being released by the Calgary Stampeders, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is looking at re-establishing his Canadian Football League ties. The CFL and XFL revealed Wednesday they’re poised to begin serious discussions about a potential partnership. Neither side would say who initiated the talks, only that they’ve agreed to collaborate on ways to grow football. Johnson, an actor and former pro wrestler, is a co-owner of the American-based XFL.

Johnson was a former standout defensive lineman for the Miami Hurricanes, before a brief flurry through the NFL and CFL. He then pursued his uber successful wrestling career.

You may recall the sad demise of Vince McMahan's XFL in 2020; the league had capitvated many viewers and had decent TV numbers. Most found it compelling and fun, especially with the live on field QB mics, and sticking cameras in front of players on the sideline right after huge play--often before they'd had a chance to 'cool down.'

Some of the innovations of the XFL were compelling, including their kickoff rules, where the teams would line up on the 40 yard lines, basically 20 yards apart, but could not move until the return man had the ball.  It made kickoffs safer, but still brought excitement. One or two blocks, and poof, the guy was gone.

Wife and I watched it and liked it. The Seattle Dragons were among many successful franchises, they usually came close to selling out the lower half of Century Link Field (they only sold lower half seats anyway).  Crowds of anywhere from 20-25,000. Not bad for a new competing league,

But the XFL because a victim of the COVID Pandemic and McMahan was forced to fold the league.

Now, it appears the Canadian League (12 men, 110 yard field, 3 downs instead of 4) is going to work with The Rock and see what they can cook up.


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