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October | 2020 | Dev W-O
Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer has reported that there was another coronavirus outbreak inside the WWE Performance Center last weekend and those who were in the building on Friday were ordered to quarantine for the next two weeks regardless if they tested positive or negative.
Meltzer adds that according to some rumors, a few individuals who are supposed to be part of tonight’s NXT Halloween Havoc broadcast are now under quarantine so certain parts of the show would have to be re-written. He also says that those who are on regular NXT television all tested negative.
NXT has switched to live shows ever since they moved to the Capitol Wrestling Center and around 100 fans are allowed inside the building. WWE tests fans 24 hours before each NXT show at a different location and if they show a negative result, they are allowed inside the building. Tonight will be no different and fans are still planned to be part of the show.
It has been a rough several weeks for the company as this is the second COVID-19 outbreak in two months.
The Raw Women’s Survivor Series team was announced last night on Raw, with four women hand picked to be part of the team while the last member had to wrestle in a fatal four-way match to earn her spot.
Nia Jax, Shayna Baszler, Mandy Rose, and Dana Brooke were automatically chosen to form the team and then a match between Nikki Cross, Lana, Peyton Royce, and Lacey Evans was held to find out who will be the fifth and final member to join the team.
The match ended with Lana winning the encounter, joining the Raw’s team. However, her celebration did not last long as when she went to hug Nia Jax, Jax put her through the Raw announce table…again!
At this year’s Survivor Series, champions from Raw will take on champions from Smackdown in non-title matches, continuing the tradition of the past few years.
The four matches scheduled right now are WWE champ Randy Orton vs Universal champ Roman Reigns, Raw Women’s champion Asuka vs Smackdown Women’s champion Sasha Banks, United States champion Bobby Lashley vs Intercontinental champion Sami Zayn, and Raw Tag Team champions The New Day vs Smackdown Tag Team champions The Street Profits.
One thing that is certainly different from last year is the exclusion of NXT. NXT was heavily featured in the run-up to the Survivor Series as well as during the show but this year the black and gold brand is nowhere to be seen.
Meiko Satomura, the co-founder of Sendai Girls’ Pro Wrestling and one of the most highly-respected wrestlers in the world, will be joining the NXT UK brand according to a story by Tokyo Sports.
Satomura said that she would be limiting her appearances with Sendai Girls and wants to move to a new stage in her career and while she didn’t give a reason why her work with Sendai Girls will decrease, Tokyo Sports said that the 40-year-old will be traveling to the UK in November to be part of the next NXT UK television tapings and also be a coach.
During a press conference, Satomura did not confirm the NXT UK news but told reporters that she would be giving more information once everything is confirmed.
In 2018, she participated in the Mae Young Classic tournament, her first association with WWE during her illustrious career. She also served as a guest coach at the WWE Performance Center during the year.
ABC affiliate WFTV9 is reporting that the Orange County Strike Team is looking into bars and businesses where COVID-19 might be spreading and three of those buildings are WWE locations.
Full Sail University – which is no longer used by WWE for now – along with the WWE Performance Center, and The Amway Center are on the list along with the Jesus School, the Amazon distribution center, Plaza on University Apartments, two Crunch Fitness locations, and Starbound Performers. Several bars are also on the list being investigated.
Reacting to the news, WWE issued a statement to WFTV9 saying that the company is not open to the public and is operating on a closed set with only essential personnel in attendance.
“As part of on-going weekly testing protocols, Aventus Labs have administered more than 10,000 PCR tests to WWE performers, employees, production staff and crew resulting in only 1.5 percent positive cases as compared to the current national average of more than 5%,” the statement read. “Additionally, extensive contact tracing takes place and impacted individuals are placed in 14-day quarantine and then only cleared after they test negative.”
WWE has suffered two known coronavirus outbreaks since the pandemic started, the latest one in September.
Stadiums and arenas in the state of Florida have been given the green light to operate at full capacity after Governor Ron DeSantis moved the state to phase 3 of reopening.
This is certainly interesting news for both WWE and AEW who continue to run their respective shows live from Orlando and Jacksonville every week.
A spokesman for Florida Governor Ron DeSantis told radio host Andy Slater that after the governor lifted restrictions, all Florida stadiums are free to go to full capacity for games and events. Another official told Jon Alba from Spectrum Sports 360 that “sports franchises can do as they please and they don’t need clearance from the state.”
WWE currently holds Raw and Smackdown television tapings from the Amway Center while NXT tapings are held at the Capitol Wrestling Center. Limited fans are allowed inside the CWC for NXT and that started this past Sunday and will continue with tonight’s live broadcast. WWE’s deal with the Amway prohibits them from having any fans but that deal runs out at the end of this month.
AEW runs Dynamite from the Daily’s Place in Jacksonville and the promotion has been allowing around a couple of hundred fans at every taping for the past several weeks.
There’s also rumors that WWE will be moving WrestleMania from Los Angeles to Tampa next year and with the news that stadiums can operate at 100% capacity, WWE will surely be looking at making up for this year’s show which was held inside the Performance Center.
Deadline.com is reporting that streaming giant Netflix has canceled GLOW, which was set to return for its fourth and final season. The cancellation was attributed to COVID-19 where many productions shut down.
“COVID has killed actual humans. It’s a national tragedy and should be our focus. COVID also apparently took down our show,” series creators Liz Flahive and Carly Mensch said in a statement to Deadline. “Netflix has decided not to finish filming the final season of GLOW. We were handed the creative freedom to make a complicated comedy about women and tell their stories. And wrestle. And now that’s gone. There’s a lot of sh*tty things happening in the world that are much bigger than this right now. But it still sucks that we don’t get to see these 15 women in a frame together again.”
Production on the fourth season of GLOW had started already and they were three weeks into filming when COVID-19 hit in mid-March. The pandemic forced production to shut down and the crew did not return to work ever since. GLOW had one episode ready and work started on the second episode when production was halted.
“We’ve made the difficult decision not to do a fourth season of GLOW due to COVID, which makes shooting this physically intimate show with its large ensemble cast especially challenging,” a Netflix spokesperson said in a statement to Deadline. “We are so grateful to creators Liz Flahive and Carly Mensch, Jenji Kohan and all the writers, cast and crew for sharing this story about the incredible women of GLOW with us and the world.”
Netflix had been working to get production back up and running for the past seven months but filming entirely in Los Angeles proved to be difficult as well as women wrestling each other made the show high-risk to produce safely during a pandemic due to physical contact. The earliest GLOW would have returned was in 2022 and with the significant delay and the increased costs of production, Netflix decided to pull the plug.
All of the series regulars have been paid for season 4 in full.
GLOW earned 15 Emmy nominations and three wins during its run.
Mustafa Ali was revealed to be the leader of Retribution last night on Monday Night Raw.
Ali wrestled MVP in the second-to-last match on Raw but Lashley and Benjamin joined their follow Hurt Business partner and surrounded Ali in the ring. At that point, before any attack happened, the lights started flickering and Retribution showed up, surrounding the ring.
But as Ali looked like he was going to join The Hurt Business in the fight against Retribution, the swerve happened. Ali left the ring and went to face T-Bar and Mace at the bottom of the ramp as MVP smiled. But that smile soon turned into fear as this time it was Ali who turned around and smiled, revealing that he was affiliated with the faction.
“Get ’em,” Ali said and on command, Retribution attacked The Hurt Business, leaving them a mess at ringside.
Ali, and the rest of the Retribution, then posed in the ring to end the segment.
The second half of season two of Miz and Mrs. will premiere on Thursday, November 12 on USA Network at 10:30PM ET.
The first six episodes of the second season aired in January, February, and March of this year and averaged 450,000 viewers per episode, down a whopping 50% from season one.
“A lot has changed for the Mizanin family, as Miz and Maryse welcomed their second daughter and experienced the joys and challenges of becoming parents of two,” the preview for the second half reads. “Also, with a newly-retired, fan-favorite grandfather, George, taking advantage of an available guest room, there’s never a dull moment in the Mizanin house.”
Former WWE producer Sarah Stock was arrested yesterday in Evansville, Indiana according to PWInsider.com and charged with aggravated battery, resisting law enforcement, disorderly conduct and public intoxication by alcohol.
Stock was booked in the early hours of Sunday morning, at approximately 4:25AM and was later released by the Vandenburgh Sheriff’s Department.
Stock was hired in 2015 as a WWE Performance Center coach and also producer and worked mainly with the women’s division. She never wrestled or worked for WWE before but had a successful career in AAA and TNA wrestling under the names of Dark Angel and Sarita.
She was released from WWE last month along with Mike “IRS” Rotunda after getting furloughed due to the coronavirus cost-cutting measures.