XFL files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy

Three Tampa Bay entities, including Vipers coach Marc Trestman, are among the biggest creditors with unsecured claims.
Vipers coach Marc Trestman smiles as his players stretch before a practice at Plant City Stadium.
Vipers coach Marc Trestman smiles as his players stretch before a practice at Plant City Stadium. [ EDUARDO A. ENCINA | Tampa Bay Times ]
Published April 13, 2020|Updated April 14, 2020

The XFL filed for bankruptcy on Monday, just three days after it suspended operations and laid off almost its entire staff.

The Chapter 11 filing in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware estimates the organization has between $10 million and $50 million in both assets and liabilities. Former Tampa Bay Vipers head coach and general manager Marc Trestman is among the creditors with the largest unsecured claims.

Chapter 11 bankruptcy gives companies time to reorganize their debts and other affairs. The legal proceedings can give companies a fresh start. In some cases, they get sold during the process.

That appears to be the case here, as the Sports Business Journal is reporting that the spring football league owned by WWE CEO and president Vince McMahon and Alpha Entertainment is now up for sale.

In an emailed statement, the XFL said it wasn’t insulated “from the harsh economic impacts and uncertainties caused by the COVID-19 crisis.”

“This is a heartbreaking time for many, including our passionate fans, players and staff, and we are thankful to them, our television partners, and the many Americans who rallied to the XFL for the love of football,” the statement reads.

The filing lists 25 entities with unsecured claims, three of which are Tampa Bay-based.

Trestman has the second-highest unsecured claim among coaches, behind only the Dallas Renegades’ Bob Stoops ($1,083,333.33). Trestman is owed $777,777.78, according to the court documents.

Related: Vipers, XFL couldn’t write their own script to end startup season

CP Communications, a St. Petersburg-based equipment rental company, has the 14th-highest claim, owed $378,303.90.

Tampa Bay Sports Authority, which operates Hillsborough County-owned Raymond James Stadium — where the Vipers played their only two home games — is owed $260,000.

The list of creditors also includes Elevate Sports Partners. The group behind the league’s ticket merchant has the fifth-highest claim at $856,175.33. Ticketing partner Ticketmaster is owed $655,148.46.

The XFL had eight teams this season and played five contests out of a planned 10-game schedule.

The league was scheduled to play its semifinal contests this weekend, but play was suspended last month due to coronavirus concerns.

The XFL still intends to return all ticket funds to fans, according to the Sports Business Journal.

Information from the Associated Press was used in this story. Contact Mari Faiello at Follow @faiello_mari.