World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) fans are in shock after the announcement WrestleMania will be moved away from Tampa Bay and performed behind closed doors.
Since the coronavirus crisis, the WWE has taken the steps - in line with a few other sports - to perform behind closed doors.
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But with WrestleMania 36 just a few weeks away, which is the biggest show in the calendar year for the WWE, the business made the huge announcement to take it away from Tampa Bay and a huge crowd.
“In coordination with local partners and government officials, WrestleMania and all related events in Tampa Bay will not take place,” a WWE statement read.
“However, WrestleMania will still stream live on Sunday, April 5 at 7 pm ET on WWE Network and be available on pay-per-view. Only essential personnel will be on the closed set at WWE’s training facility in Orlando, Florida to produce WrestleMania.”
The news that the most highly-anticipated wrestling event would be carried out behind closed doors and in the performance centre stunned fans.
Fans couldn’t help but feel sorry for the wrestlers who work their whole career to star in the show, but now will have to perform in front of no crowd.
WrestleMania with no fans and at the Performance Center. We’re gonna look back on this craziness in years to come and still not believe any of it. Just unreal. https://t.co/cktLBSIlTq— Simon Miller (@SimonMiller316) March 16, 2020
Damn, could you imagine working your whole life to get your wrestlemania moment... at the WWE performance center in front of no fans 👀— 𝖒𝖆𝖙𝖙𝖍𝖊𝖜 𝖏𝖚𝖘𝖙𝖎𝖈𝖊 (@ThrashJustice) March 16, 2020
Vinny Mac pulling up to the performance center for Wrestlemania pic.twitter.com/HmDEECBoKu— I Like Xeryus🥀 (@XThreeee) March 16, 2020
WrestleMania at the performance center.— Jessi Davin (@jessithebuckeye) March 16, 2020
Essential personnel only.
No pirate ship shenanigans.
No extravagant pyro. pic.twitter.com/7tTPMnB4AY
vince mcmahon and the boys at wrestlemania in the performance center when roman reigns wins the universal championship pic.twitter.com/x8SkqeTxje— James Darnell (@cmpuls3) March 16, 2020
WWE wrestlers react
Wrestlers took to social media to express their shock but resilient mindset during the difficult times.
Female wrestler Shayna Baszler already took to social media to claim she wouldn’t let the change in venue or no crowd dampen her excitement for her WrestleMania debut.
Others were stunned and felt sorry for the fans who were going to make the trip to the iconic event.
My first #WrestleMania moment will be perfect. No one in the arena to dampen the sound of tendons ripping and bones cracking & snapping as I become the RAW women’s champion & usher in a new era #Reality #CrankRipTear— Shayna Baszler (@QoSBaszler) March 17, 2020
Heart broken for everyone who was excited for WrestlaMania in Tampa. I’m so sorry to the fans @BillieKayWWE & I were so excited to meet. Our time will come!!— Peyton Royce (@PeytonRoyceWWE) March 16, 2020
This WrestleMania will go down in history.
I’m grateful for the city & WWE for keeping everyone safe during this time ❤️
Best Wrestlemania ever!!! I’ll bring the chips https://t.co/AdptuAdzWc— Bayley (@itsBayleyWWE) March 17, 2020