Fans who hoped that WWE would continue to provide relief and entertainment to take their minds off the current coronavirus pandemic just got some good news.
CBS Sports reports that Orange County, Florida, mayor Jerry Demings, and Florida governor Ron DeSantis, just named WWE an “essential business” to allow them to continue programming during the self-isolation and WWE will continue in business.
WWE is an essential business
While WWE was considered a non-essential business before, the local government got together and changed course.
However, Demings and DeSantis spoke and decided that WWE qualifies as an essential business the same as supermarkets, clinics, banks, pharmacies, and other daily necessities.
“We believe it is now more important than ever to provide people with a diversion from these hard times,” WWE said in a statement to ESPN. “We are producing content on a closed set with only essential personnel in attendance following appropriate guidelines.”
WWE also stated there would be several guidelines in place.
Orange County Mayor Demmings just now on WWE maintaining live tapings:
"Originally, they were not deemed an essential business. With some conversation with the governor's office regarding the governor's order, they were deemed an essential business."
— Harry (@harryaaron) April 13, 2020
They will sanitize and clean all parts of the ring in between every match. They will take off all mic covers and dispose of them, changing them out between every promo or interview.
WWE will also keep all wrestlers in the back separated, test everyone the days of the tapings, and ensure that after the tapings the wrestlers involved will self-quarantine in between tapings to ensure no one developed coronavirus in between Raws or SmackDowns.
Monday Night Raw will continue to air on Monday nights live, NXT on Wednesdays, and Friday Night SmackDown on Fridays. They will all take place at the WWE Performance Center at Full Sail University in Winter Park, Florida.
Since WWE wrestling is considered essential business now, one wonders if AEW will get the same rights so they can tape everything from Jacksonville, where the owner owns Daily’s Place by the Jaguars stadium.
Drew McIntyre thanks fans
New WWE Champion Drew McIntyre came out to the ring to open Monday Night Raw.
He told the audience that he was honored that they allowed him and the rest of the superstars into their homes to provide them with entertainment and a temporary escape.
This moved on to McIntyre thanking the fans and media for their support since he won his title and mentioned that he beat Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania 36 and then beat Big Show later that night.
He will be a fighting champion and will defend it against anyone.
With that, the show went on.
WWE Monday Night Raw airs on Mondays at 8/7c on USA Network.