The entire world has come to a halt due to the COVID-19 outbreak, but the same cannot be said about WWE. The company has continued to produce their shows with no one in attendance over the past month and returned to live programming beginning with RAW this week.
WWE going forward with the shows came as a major shocker to several individuals, and many wondered about the legality of the whole situation, as Florida is currently under a state of lockdown. However, Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings put forth a statement in which he classified the promotion as ‘essential business’. He said that his order came from the Florida governor’s office itself.
“I think initially there was — a review that was done and they were not initially deemed an essential business. With some conversation with the governor’s office regarding the governor’s order, they were deemed an essential business. And so therefore, they were allowed to remain open.”
The Performance Center in Orlando, Florida is the current host to all the WWE events and even hosted WrestleMania 36 last week. Until normalcy resumes, WWE will most likely continue to air all the shows and PPVs from their training facility.
Marc Raimondi reported that the company found a loophole to shoot the events, a loophole which is also by the news crews to broadcast their shows during these times. Raimondi said that any event within a closed-door facility is essential business.
“Per a memo, Florida has deemed “employees at a professional sports and media production with a national audience — including … athletes, entertainers, production team, executive team, media team” and others as essential.
The caveat would be anything like that would have to be at a location closed to the public.”
This could also be a way for other sporting promotions to hold their shows in the state of Florida, as the memo classified all the closed-set events to be an essential business. AEW hosted a few of their episodes in Jacksonville, Florida, before moving to QT Marshall’s gym in Atlanta.