Former XFL commissioner Oliver Luck has sued the spring season American football league’s majority owner Vince McMahon for alleged wrongful dismissal, according to multiple reports.
Luck reportedly had guaranteed contract worth between $20-25m over five years. Now in an attempt to gain the remainder of monies owed, he has decided to sue McMahon himself rather than the XFL.
It is unclear what Luck’s chances of success are in the case, not least as the majority of the complaint is redacted for confidentiality reasons.
“Mr. Luck wholly disputes and rejects the allegations set forth in the Termination Letter and contends they are pretextual and devoid of merit,” reads Luck’s legal complaint, which was filed in Connecticut federal court last week.
The lawsuit, a heavily redacted filing, seeks unspecified damages, attorney’s fees and interest, and a declaratory judgment on fulfilling the terms of the contract.
“Oliver Luck’s services as Commissioner and CEO of The XFL were terminated by a letter sent to him on Apr. 9, 2020 which explained the reasons for the termination,” McMahon’s attorney, Jerry McDevitt, said a statement. “As to the lawsuit he filed, his allegations will be disputed and the position of Mr. McMahon will be set forth in our response to his lawsuit.”
The XFL canceled the reminder of its inaugural season last month due to the global Covid-19 pandemic and initially committed to returning to 2021. The suspension of all league operations and subsequent bankruptcy filing, however, make it all but certain the XFL will not return.
Multiple reports indicated the XFL could be sold during the bankruptcy process. But that could be a tall order given the XFL’s demise also closely follows the bankruptcy of the rival entity Alliance of American Football in 2019, in turn extending the repeated failures over several decades of spring season football as a concept in the United States.