Oliver Luck Sues Vince McMahon for Millions After XFL’s Bankruptcy
Getty Images. Pictured: Oliver Luck and Vince McMahon
XFL commissioner Oliver Luck has sued XFL owner Vince McMahon.
Luck, through his attorneys, said he was wrongfully terminated in a case that was filed in Connecticut last Thursday, and is owed the money that he was guaranteed when he signed on to become the commissioner in May 2018.
Sources say Luck received a contract for in between $20-25 million over five years. The contract stipulated he'd be due the remaining balance if terminated without cause.
"Oliver Luck's services as Commissioner and CEO of the XFL were terminated by a letter sent to him on April 9, 2020, which explained the reasons for the termination," McMahon’s lawyer Jerry McDevitt of K&L Gates told The Action Network. "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."
To that, Luck's complaint says, "Mr. Luck wholly disputes and rejects the allegations set forth in the Termination Letter and contends they are pretextual and devoid of merit."
McMahon pledged to back his second attempt at an upstart football league with hundreds of millions of dollars of his own money. The new XFL lasted 20 games before the league shut down due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Luck, as well as other top executives, were missing from the XFL's bankruptcy filing on April 13. Luck's suit notes that he was never listed as a creditor because Alpha Entertainment, McMahon's entity, filed to reject many executive contracts at the same time as filing their petition.
Sources say the bankruptcy court approved the rejecting of those contracts, which meant that Luck’s only recourse was to sue McMahon.
"The to-be-expected motion to dismiss from McMahon and the response will be interesting from a legal perspective," said Darren Heitner, sports lawyer and founder of Heitner Legal. "Luck's contract was not with McMahon personally. Will the court be convinced that McMahon's pledge to provide his own money adds personal liability? Seems to be a stretch."
Former XFL coaches Bob Stoops ($1.083 million), Marc Trestman ($777,777), the Jonathan Hayes ($633,333) and others ($583,333 each) were listed as creditors in the XFL's bankruptcy filing.
When reached by The Action Network, Luck's attorney Paul Dobrowski declined comment.