Report: XFL says commissioner Luck fired for cause

Report: XFL says commissioner Luck fired for cause

XFL commissioner and CEO Oliver Luck was filed for cause, according to a court filing in response to Luck's breach of contract suit against the now-bankrupt league.

Sports Business Daily reported that lawyers for XFL owner Vince McMahon filed documents Wednesday in the case in a Connecticut federal court. Luck was fired last month, and the court filings contend Luck was let go for "gross neglect" on the job.

The league contends he left Connecticut, where the fledgling XFL was based, and returned home to Indiana on March 13, the day after the league suspended play amid the coronavirus pandemic.

"Put simply, at the very moment when his leadership as CEO was needed most, Luck did not devote substantially all of his business time to the XFL, as required by his contract," according to the filing, per Sports Business Daily.

The league also had grounds to fire Luck because he used his league-issued cellphone for personal business and signed former NFL wide receiver Antonio Callaway to a contract, despite his past legal issues, according to the court filing. McMahon had said players who came with personal baggage couldn't be signed without his approval.

On April 16, Luck sued McMahon for wrongful termination, seeking at least $16 million. The suit, filed in U.S. District Court in Connecticut, is asking for the remainder of money guaranteed on his contract, in addition to unspecified damages, attorney fees and interest.

Luck stepped down as executive vice president of the NCAA to join the XFL reboot. The McMahon filing said Luck's contract called for him to earn $5 million a year with a $2 million annual bonus.

Luck received a termination letter on April 9, according to his lawsuit, which added that Luck "wholly disputes and rejects the allegations set forth in the Termination Letter and contends they are pretextual and devoid of merit."

Most XFL employees were laid off on April 10, two days before the league filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, citing "the harsh economic impacts and uncertainties caused by the COVID-19 crisis" as the reason for shutting down.

--Field Level Media

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