A Paul Rabil-led group of sports and media investors headed by the Raine Group is set to unveil the Premier Lacrosse League, a six-team, traveling professional league that will debut play in 2019, according to a report published Tuesday a.m. on Bloomberg.com.
Player sources independently confirmed much of the report to Inside Lacrosse, though Rabil declined to comment.
The Bloomberg report included that players will be full-time employees and will receive an equity stake in the league.
Multiple players intending to play in PLL next year, but who had played in Major League Lacrosse last summer, told IL that more than 100 players provided notice to the MLL league office of their intentions. The Bloomberg report says, “The league has secured the participation of a number of well-known players, including those on Team USA and Canada.”
It also said, “The PLL season will run from June to September, meaning it won’t overlap with the indoor National Lacrosse League or college lacrosse seasons.”
Sources also tell IL that PLL leadership is in conversations with multiple broadcast networks over acquiring its linear and digital rights.
This report comes in the wake of increased activity out of the MLL league office. Prior to the MLL championship last month, first-year commissioner Sandy Brown tweeted,“An amazing meeting in Charleston today w/ MLL owners & team presidents. Presentations by the brightest minds in sports mktg & media-Michael Lynch, Katie Bayne, Ed Desser & Drew Reifenberger. Presented 3 year plan for MLL 2.0. Excited for a new era for MLL players, fans & partners.”
Last week, MLL announced that it’d be increasing its salary cap, active roster and game schedule in 2019. In addition to the increased salary cap and game days and roster size, Major League Lacrosse has been resigning players at an unprecedented pace in recent weeks, with more than 30 players agreeing to multi-year deals.