Co-founded by Paul and Mike Rabil, the PLL heads into its fourth season in 2022 with a new media rights deal with ESPN.
The Premier Lacrosse League has raised a funding round with new invesors that include the WWE and Kevin Durant and Rich Kleiman’s 35V. Chernin Group, a previous investor in the league, led the round, according to Bloomberg.
“The marketplace saw a proof of concept backed up by performance,” said Mike Rabil, PLL CEO and co-founder, in an interview with Bloomberg. The league signed a media rights deal with ESPN earlier this year. Mike retired from playing lacrosse last year and became president of the PLL. “ESPN has the best marketing platform of any broadcaster in the space. As a start-up league, our goal was always to get that type of deal, and it was the culminating moment for the next step.”
As Paul Rabil, Premier Lacrosse League co-founder and Mike’s brother, added: “Our purpose — in addition to growing the company –is getting out in front of the opportunity to grow the sport internationally [that will] punch through the ceiling of the casual sports fan.”
Similar to how the WWE operates, the PPL follows a tour-based model. The league’s eight teams travel to different cities and play their games before packing up and moving on to the next location.
“Paul is a star on and off the field. What he and his team have built with PLL transcends the sport of lacrosse and is a blueprint for how a new sports league can succeed,” said 35V co-CEO Rich Kleiman on the occasion. “We’re excited to contribute to the league’s growth now and in the future.”