Last Week around the Leagues
by Fran Stuchbury
August 4, 2020 - World TeamTennis (WTT)
This past week the XFL was purchased for approximately $15 million by Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, Dany Garcia and Gerry Cardinale of Red Bird Capital, The New York Empire won its first World TeamTennis Championship, the Detroit Pistons purchased the G League's Northern Arizona Suns from the Phoenix Suns, and the Indoor Football League team in Columbus, Ohio announced it will be known as the Wild Dogs. Highlights from this week are from the XFL, World TeamTennis, Major League Rugby, National Women's Soccer League, Canadian Premier League, NBA G League, Premier Lacrosse League, Major League Lacrosse and Atlantic League.
Actor and former wrestler Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, Gerry Cardinale of RedBird Capital and Dany Garcia teamed up to purchase the XFL for approximately $15 million. Johnson's business partner, Dany Garcia, who is also his ex-wife, will be an equal stakeholder with him.
Yahoo Finance's Dan Roberts joins the On the Move panel to discuss Dwayne Johnson and his business partner acquiring the XFL in deal worth $15 million.
Indoor Football League
Following an extensive process to determine the best name for Columbus' newest professional sports team, the IFL's Columbus franchise revealed that it will be called the Columbus Wild Dogs. The logo, team colors, and uniform designs were made public during an event at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium. The Wild Dogs will begin play at Nationwide Arena in March of 2022.
National Arena League
The National Arena League is excited to announce a new partnership and expansion to Baltimore, Maryland. The Baltimore Lighting under the ownership of HMG Sports Marketing and Will Hanna will be joining the NAL teams to compete in the 2021 season. The Lightning have signed a three year Membership Agreement with the NAL and will play in the Royal Farms Arena.
Terrence Foster will remain the head coach and general manager of the Jersey Flight in 2021. Foster joined the organization in October, 2019 and helped with the transition into the National Arena League. The 2020 NAL season was cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic. Foster and the organization have already begun preparing for the 2021 season. Foster will oversee all football operations and will be the team's defensive play caller. Prior to the pandemic, Foster and the team's coaching staff put together a talented roster of established Arena Football veterans and young prospects with the potential to be great.
The 2020 World TeamTennis season came down to a 13-point Supertiebreaker. And for a league that promotes "every point matters," all 13 points were necessary. The New York Empire outlasted the expansion Chicago Smash to claim a 21-20 victory to cap the 45th WTT season and hoist the King Trophy for the first time. "To see the best players going after it, toe-to-toe, it's wonderful," said Empire coach Luke Jensen, whose squad finished runner-up in 2019. "Last year, we were one swing away, and this time the swing went in. We're very fortunate to be in this position."
New York defeats Chicago 21-20 in a supertiebreaker.
Listen in on Luke Jensen and Kamau Murray as they watch the ending of the 2020 WTT Championship.
Major League Rugby
San Diego Legion Top Five Tries from 2020 season
Major League Soccer
Atlanta United announced that Atlanta United 2 head coach Stephen Glass will serve as interim head coach following the departure of Frank De Boer. Glass will take over effective immediately while the team has begun to search for a permanent replacement for De Boer. Academy Director Tony Annan will take over as interim head coach of Atlanta United 2. Following a distinguished professional playing career, Glass joined Atlanta United in August 2018 as a coach for the Atlanta United Academy focusing on the U-17 squad. He was promoted to head coach of the club's USL Championship affiliate ATL UTD 2 in January 2019.
National Women's Soccer League
The National Women's Soccer League broke its domestic televisions record for the second time in a month when the NWSL Challenge Cup final between the Chicago Red Stars and Houston Dash drew an average audience of 653,000 viewers on the main CBS Network. The opening game of the quarantined summer tournament in Utah between Portland Thorns FC and North Carolina Courage broke the previous ratings record with an average of 572,000 viewers on CBS.
Rachel Dally led the NWSL Challenge Cup with three goals and two assists en route to leading the Houston Dash to the title and was named the NWSL Challenge Cup MVP.
Canadian Premier League
The Canadian Premier League, together with its Owners, Clubs and Player leadership, is pleased to announce Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island as the location for the CPL 2020 season. The CPL and the Province of Prince Edward Island have been working tirelessly with the Owners, Players, Government of Canada, City of Charlottetown, and other partners to finalize the details on a location that would include the mandated public health protocols and measures that will govern the season.
The Island Games 2020 Canadian Premier League Season
NBA G League
NBA Academy graduate Princepal Singh, a 6-10 forward from Punjab, India, has signed to play in the NBA G League next season, it was announced by NBA G League President Shareef Abdur-Rahim. Singh, who will train and compete alongside the new G League team featuring elite youth prospects, is the first NBA Academy graduate to sign with the NBA G League and first NBA Academy India graduate to sign a professional contract.
The Detroit Pistons, the Phoenix Suns and the NBA G League announced that the Pistons have agreed to purchase the Northern Arizona Suns from the Phoenix Suns. The rebranded team is expected to play in a new arena currently being constructed on the campus of Wayne State University beginning in the 2021-22 season. The Pistons current "hybrid" affiliation with the Grand Rapids Drive will continue through the 2020-21 NBA G League season. The Phoenix Suns will continue to operate the Northern Arizona Suns for the 2020-21 season.
The Detroit Pistons announced plans for their new G League affiliate. The team announced today the purchase and relocation of the Phoenix G League organization, and plan to move the team into a new arena on the campus of Wayne State University.
Women's National Basketball Association
With her seventh rebound in a matchup against the Seattle Storm, Minnesota center Sylvia Fowles (3357) passed current Lynx assistant coach and ex-teammate Rebekkah Brunson to become the WNBA's all-time leader in rebounds. Playing in her 13th WNBA season, Fowles holds career averages of 15.8 points (on 59.3% shooting), 9.8 rebounds and 1.83 blocks per game.
Premier Lacrosse League
Get to Know Redwoods' Myles Jones
Major League Lacrosse
Go behind the scenes and in the locker room for the 2020 MLL Championship. The Boston Cannons defeated the Denver Outlaws, winning their first Championship since 2011.
National Lacrosse League
The Saskatchewan Rush have acquired forward Josh Currier along with the seventh overall pick in the 2020 National Lacrosse League Entry Draft from the Philadelphia Wings in exchange for forward Ben McIntosh and three draft picks. The Rush also receive Philadelphia's first-round pick in the 2021 NLL Entry Draft, giving Saskatchewan four first-round selections over the next two Entry Drafts.
American Hockey League
American Hockey League President and CEO Scott Howson has announced a revised start date for the 2020-21 AHL season, as approved by the league's Board of Governors during its 2020 Annual Meeting held via conference call. At the recommendation of the AHL's Return to Play Task Force, the Board of Governors has approved moving the anticipated start of the 2020-21 regular season to December 4, 2020, due to the ongoing COVID-19 public health crisis. The AHL will continue to work with its member clubs to monitor developments and local guidelines in all 31 league cities.
Southern Professional Hockey League
The Southern Professional Hockey League (SPHL) announced that it is targeting mid-to-late December for the start of the 2020-2021 regular season. The 2020-2021 regular season schedule and playoff format will be announced at a later date.
National Women's Hockey League
In the NWHL's continuing efforts to manage the COVID-19 pandemic while prioritizing the wellbeing of all players, staff, fans and the community, the league announced a timeline for the upcoming season. The regular season will begin in January 2021, with each team playing a full season of 20 games, and the Isobel Cup Playoffs are expected to be completed by the end of March. The league will aim to hold its popular annual All-Star Game, but not until after the Isobel Cup Playoffs are completed.
The Atlantic League of Professional Baseball (ALPB) announced it is expanding to the City of Gastonia with a team ownership group led by Brandon Bellamy, CEO of Velocity Companies, Inc. Gastonia becomes the second Atlantic League location in North Carolina, joining High Point, where the Rockers began play in 2019. In partnership with the City of Gastonia, Bellamy and The Velocity Companies will collaborate on economic development projects tied to the ballpark, which are expected to include residential, retail, hotel, and office space properties, a potential $100M investment opportunity for the City.
North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper is Excited about the FUSE Ballpark in Gastonia.
Did we miss anything newsworthy or downright fun? Have a nomination for next week's column? Contact us today and let us know.
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World TeamTennis Stories from August 4, 2020
- WTT2020 Championship on CBS Sets Viewership Record, Completes Most Successful Season in League History - WTT
- Last Week around the Leagues - OSC Original by Fran Stuchbury
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