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CFL, XFL won't collaborate after all

It was never clear how the two leagues would work together and they never figured it out, either.

The CFL and XFL jointly announced in March they were exploring a collaboration. It wasn't at all clear at the time what that meant, to them or to us. The goal of the collaboration was to find avenues to collaborate. To "identify opportunities for the leagues to collaborate, innovate, and grow the game of football," the XFL's statement said at the time.

Turns out, said talks didn't go anywhere. At least not to an official link between the leagues. 

“Our talks with the XFL, exploring the potential for collaboration and innovation, have been positive and constructive," the CFL said in a statement. "While we remain open to finding new ways to work together in the future, we and our XFL counterparts have jointly decided to not pursue any formal arrangements at this time." 

The XFL's announcement included a bit of news. It will re-launch, for the second time, in 2023. 

"While our discussions with the CFL did not ultimately lead to a collaboration, the effort reinforced our belief and commitment to developing the XFL for international spring football," the XFL said in a statement. "We look forward to seeing everyone for kickoff in spring of 2023."

The XFL originally launched in 2001 and played just one season. It re-launched in 2020 but did not finish that season due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The league then changed hands from Vince McMahon's WWE to a group fronted by Dwayne Johnson. 

The CFL did not play in 2020 but will begin its 2021 season on Aug. 5.