wrestling / News

Vince McMahon Reportedly Considered Holding WrestleMania in Empty Stadium

April 4, 2020 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas
Vince McMahon WWE Raw 12-17-18, Earl Hebner, Al Snow, Taz

WrestleMania is airing taped from the WWE Performance Center, but there was apparently a plan being considered to do it in the empty Raymond James Stadium. Sports Illustrated reports that as WWE was figuring out what to do for the show as the COVID-19 situation bloomed into a full pandemic, one of the ideas by Vince McMahon was to hold it at the Tampa arena without fans.

However, the situation obviously changed as it got more severe and eventually that choice was taken out of McMahon’s control as the state of Florida was concerned about the optics of a state hosting WWE’s biggest show of the year in public — empty stadium or not — amid a pandemic. Additionally, the stadium would have been a major aesthetic problem in terms of being impossible to avoid showing off the empty seats, which WWE has taken steps to hide at the Performance Center shows.

The site notes that McMahon was about the only person in WWE who wanted to push ahead with the show this weekend. That resulted in him deciding to have the show moved to the Performance Center in Orlando, as canceling would have been entirely antithetical to McMahon’s business principles and personal sensibilities. SI notes that postponing would have been a “logistical nightmare” due to the fact that the rest of the year is largely booked already, and the fact that there’s no word on when restrictions would be lifted made it difficult to sate a re-scheduling date. These were the factors that led to the official move to being taped at the PC and elsewhere.