By Goose Mahler, Associate Editor
People get ready… there’s a train a comin’.
The Karma train is laying the Smackdown on the WWE’s roody poo candy ass, to steal a phrase from the People’s Champ. This has happened in such a way that you might even feel a little sorry for them. Well, maybe not, but when you think things can’t get worse, they have.
The week started like any other week in wrestling, some rumblings and rumors, some allegations and lawsuits, then the fun started for the company deemed essential to keep taping their shows. Just as Raw ended the WWE machine seemingly went into a self-inflicted downward spiral.
Raw was finishing and what seemed to be a cleaner show than they’ve had in months turned into a full fledged 3 ring circus.
A developmental talent tested positive for COVID-19. You know that virus Vince’s best friend Donald called a hoax. This lead to cancelled tapings, talent and employees being frustrated and upset over waiting around for testing, a flurry of excuse making statements, and even a high profile Raw Superstar going home because he is putting his family first.
Good for you Mr. Kevin Owens, common sense wins out in the end, and you get the Casual Sheep thumbs up for using your head and thinking about your family over your wallet.
This storm was just getting rolling at this point.
If you watched Raw, you might have noticed the WWE didn’t have just developmental talent ringside, they actually let fans (or friends and family depending on who you ask) into the tapings! Yeah…but where were the masks and the social distancing? Was the talent told about this by management? The answer to that is a big ole fat NO.
This led to the wrestlers being pretty damn mad. How does management invite people in without telling the performers? Better yet, when did the WWE find out about the positive test? Why was it leaked at the end of the show? And if they did know before the show started, why the hell did they allow the Street Profits to go into the crowd? Then have Dominick Misterio do the same thing???
WWE management didn’t tell the wrestlers their was going to be other people outside of the developmental talent in the crowd. Here’s the problem for you simpletons at home that don’t get the dangers of COVID-19.
The talent is traveling to and from certain areas and around the same people. When you bring in fans you have no way to trace where they’ve been. Who they’ve been around. When they were there or for how long. No way to trace the origins of the virus should they contract it. Yes, people I researched this to a T because I’ve had friends in this situation and isolated. Trace track is real and the best way to cover those you might have exposed if you get this virus. But this is the WWE and they are invisible! NOT!
The reality of the situation is COVID-19 shows no signs of slowing down. It goes down, someone reopens up a store, a bar, whatever it may be and the spike seems to return. Not fake news or journalism people, fact at this point across the board no matter which political side tries to tell you different.
I’m no scientist and not claiming to be one, but that would tell me all precautions should still be taken. At least that is what a person with some common sense would think or we would like to think. But not the WWE. Nope, not even close.
The WWE wasn’t even testing the talent for COVID-19 properly. They were relying solely on temperature checks. They weren’t using masks and kept trucking because up until last week, they got lucky. Not this time around, now they had several talents in the ring and around it that might have been exposed to COVID-19.
Here is a company that is “supposed” to be a lead in the wrestling industry and instead of full on measures to protect their own talent, they half assed it. Yes, they half assed protecting their own performers in the sake of lining their own pockets and trying to rush things back to normalcy. For those of you that might have made fun of Roman Reigns or Sami Zayn for not working during this pandemic, I say the jokes on you.
These wrestlers, talents, performers, superstars, whatever you want to call them are risking their own safety for the WWE and wrestling, their fans, and their jobs. You would think this multi-million-dollar company would do EVERYTHING in their power to protect these people. They failed and failed miserably.
I don’t blame KO for going home at all. I don’t think Roman Reigns is in the wrong protecting himself and his family over this virus. I don’t believe Sami Zayn should be getting some of the hate he’s got because he’s doing what’s best for him and his family. The WWE has tried like hell to not make mention of COVID-19 and all for the sake of thinking if they don’t say it, it must not be happening.
But that’s not ALL FOLKS! e
Several different sites claimed people in attendance were told they wouldn’t be on TV is they wore masks. Some outlets have disputed that claim and said it was optional. So, I went back and checked out Smackdown, Raw, NXT and AEW.
The WWE miraculously doesn’t show anyone outside of a female wrestler wearing masks outside the ring wearing any type of masks. You know that thing that is supposed to help people from spreading COVID-19.
AEW had some people wearing masks at TV tapings. AEW also had real COVID-19 tests happening on the day of taping. For a new company that wasn’t a threat, they seem to be doing everything right. The WWE…not so much.
Then it was said by multiple people and outlets, I got lucky I know one of them, that Kevin Dunn the WWE VP Executive Producer of TV. You know him, he’s Vince’s right hand and number one stooge. Told fans in attendance “You’re not a real fans if you wear a mask.”
Mr. Dunn has produced so many WWE shows that he must not realize that in the heyday with Kane, Rey Misterio, Sting, the Road Warriors, you know guys that covered their faces and sold merch to rapid fans that showed their images. Let us not forget to mention the Fiend who got over pretty damn good with certain fans and had people wearing his masks even in Saudi during those blood money tours.
But I digress, masks are being used to stop the spread of COVID-19 Mr. Dunn, not to cover the fans faces to show they are closet wrestling fans. We would expect Vince McMahon’s so-called right hand to know the difference. Then again, Dunn might just be another lacky that doesn’t give a shit about the fans or the wrestlers safety over making another buck.
Just when you think it’s safe to go back into the water…
The WWE in a panic tried to get all the talent and crew tested Tuesday, but that didn’t happen in a timely manner leading to cancelling tapings. Then they resumed late Wednesday and NXT was partially live and taped. All because the tests were trickling in slowly and they didn’t do it correctly the first time, like they should have.
Remember the old WWE opening where they claimed to be a LEADER in sports entertainment? Leaders should not be half assing something this serious or so you would think.
It seemed like things were settling down this morning, but the flood gates reopened yet again. Two women came out and exposed WWE NXT UK talents Jordan Devlin and Ligero for abuse. Here at www.thegorillaposition.com we normally don’t dabble in rumors and dirt sheet myths. But I’m here to tell you, when Pete Dunn and Piper Niven back the women coming out and throw support their way, this is not a rumor or speculation especially when they do it publicly.
As of this writing, the WWE has not made any official comment regarding the allegations, but they would be wise to act quick considering how much of a hair trigger the wrestling internet community has been on lately with all the lawsuits, lack of common sense and good shows. There is no place for abusers in wrestling or the world in my opinion. Time to trim the fat in NXT UK.
To top off their week, Fox Execs were not happy with the WWE and the Urine test segment between Jeff Hardy and Sheamus on Smackdown. They disliked it so much it was cut from the West Coast airing. They deemed it inappropriate by Standards and Practices…I remember them from WCW. If I could be serious again for a moment. Well duh. Vince McMahon’s creative process has led to the downfall in ratings, he has no one to blame but himself.
I guess this what happens when your owner is a delusional old bastard who likes sniffing his own farts for entertainments sake. Rock meet Bottom. Until next week…
Mark Mahler is the Associate Editor of TheGorillaPosition.com and the former Editor-in-Chief of Absolute Wrestling. Follow him on Twitter @MGoose37