POST NEWS UPDATE: WWE has no plans to cancel or postpone WrestleMania, despite Coronavirus outbreak

The Coronavirus will not affect WrestleMania 36, Chris Jericho tells the story of the AEW World Title going missing, matches announced for NXT, AEW Dynamite and SmackDown, Madman Fulton talks his contract with IMPACT Wrestling, and much more.

If any of the quotes from the following podcasts or video interviews are used, please credit those sources and provide an H/T and link back to POST Wrestling for the transcriptions.

** Despite the confirmed cases of the Coronavirus in the Tampa area, WWE has no plans to cancel or postpone their WrestleMania 36 event, as noted in a statement they filed to ESPN.

“The health and safety of our fans, performers and employees are our top priorities and we are monitoring the situation closely with our partners and government officials in Tampa Bay. We remain committed to hosting WrestleMania at Raymond James Stadium on Sunday, April 5, and like other entertainment properties in the U.S., there are currently no plans to cancel or postpone our upcoming events.”

On top of the WWE-related festivities, there are a plethora of independent shows in the area that week/weekend. The Coronavirus caused the likes of New Japan Pro-Wrestling, Dragon Gate, DDT and Tokyo Joshi Pro to cancel some of their March shows as the Coronavirus outbreak began to spread.

** On the latest episode of Chris Jericho’s ‘Talk Is Jericho’ podcast, he told the story of the AEW World Championship going missing after winning the belt at All Out. The gist of the story is that Jericho carried the title in a grey sack and nobody knew the title was in the bag before he boarded a private jet. After Jericho and those who were with him got off the flight, they used a limousine service that was based in Tampa but the service could be used in Tallahassee as well. Jericho is of the belief that the driver had something to do with the belt being stolen but he has not been able to confirm that.

“So, as we’re getting ready to leave, I say, ‘We’re really hungry. We wanna go grab a bite. Let’s just go to a steakhouse. Let’s go to Outback’, and so there was an Outback kind of near and the guy says, ‘Let’s just go to Longhorn. It’s closer to where we need to go.’ Now I put it into my GPS and it was a little bit closer but it was pretty much the same thing. ‘Outback, Longhorn? Which one would you guys like to do? Let’s just do Longhorn, whatever.’ So for the people going, ‘Well why did you go to Longhorn?’ That’s the reason why, because the driver said, ‘Let’s go to Longhorn.’ See a pattern here? See a pattern starting to develop? So we go to Longhorn and we have some food, and I notice, probably 15 or 20 minutes into sitting there and it’s not a big restaurant, it’s not super packed and when you walk into the front door, we were sitting at a table that was in eyesight’s view of the front door. So, the guy comes in, the driver, and he goes to the front door and he starts kind of walking around the restaurant, and we see him come in. We’re like, ‘Isn’t that our driver? What’s he doing?’ He’s kind of just wandering around and just kind of hanging out… and he kind of wanders over to our table about five minutes later and says, ‘Hey, just wanted to check your address. Is that a residence or an apartment?’ And I’m like, ‘It’s a residence. What difference does it make? Just put it into your GPS.’ He goes, ‘Ah! Just wanted to make sure. I was just checking,’ and then he walks out. I’m like, ‘That’s peculiar. Like why would he walk in here, wander around for five minutes then come over and ask me a completely irrelevant question to where we’re going and then walk out?’ Huh. Almost like he was, I don’t know, maybe stalling inside the restaurant, right?’

So we’re hanging out and we finish up our dinner and we’re eating and the guy comes in again, about 20 minutes after that, and he comes in and says, ‘Your title belt is missing.’ I said, ‘What!?’ He goes, ‘Your title belt, the championship belt is missing.’ Now first of all I’m thinking, ‘How do you know there’s a title belt in there? It’s in a bag.’ It’s not the job of a driver to go through people’s bags when they’re inside. I go, ‘What do you mean it’s missing!?’ He goes, ‘Yeah, you put it in there. I came out and it was gone’, and I’m like, ‘What the f*ck are you talking about!? What is it — what!? What are you talking about?’ So we go outside, and here’s the thing: it was my wife’s birthday that week so I bought her a big bouquet of flowers and a vase to take home, and when we go out there, the vase that was in the back of the truck is now in the backseat. It’s gone from the trunk area to the backseat, and I’m like, ‘Well how do you know the thing is gone?’ He said, ‘Well I just went to go look in the back’ and it’s obvious when he looked in the back, that the flowers fell out onto the ground. He never mentioned the fact that the flowers fell out onto the ground. He just mentioned the fact that the belt was gone. So I just start flipping out because I’m like, ‘You are a stupid…’”

Jericho stated that he was embarrassed about calling Tony Khan, The Young Bucks, Kenny Omega and Cody to tell them what happened and he shared bits and pieces of his conversation with Tony Khan.

“So I wake up the next morning and I’m like, ‘Ah, I gotta call –’ I call Tony Khan and I’m like, ‘Hey man, the title got stolen.’ He’s like, ‘What!?’ I go, ‘The title got stolen.’ Like, ‘What do you mean it got stolen?’ Now I feel like the biggest loser ever because I’m trying to explain to my boss that I lost the title. The title got stolen, and it’s like, what a terrible, embarrassing thing to have to say to your boss. ‘I’m sorry. The title got stolen.’ Like, terrible, and then I have to tell Cody and I gotta tell Nick and Matt Jackson and Kenny’s gotta know and I just feel like, these guys are probably texting each other going, ‘What was Jericho drunk? Or is he high or is he just stupid?’ And it’s none of those things. The thing that I did stupid was not put the title back into my big suitcase and leaving it out and even so, it’s in the back of giant limo-SUV.”

** PWInsider is reporting that WWE is planning their return to Saudi Arabia. A date for mid-August was pitched but with SummerSlam taking place around that time, the date was shot down. The sports-entertainment company is looking to return in October or November. The last event in Saudi Arabia took place on February 27th entitled “Super ShowDown”. A review of that show by Wai Ting, Mike Murray and John Pollock can be watched at this link.

** Sportskeeda conducted an interview with Madman Fulton and Fulton shared that he has two years left on his contract with IMPACT Wrestling and within that two years, he doesn’t think it’s out the question that he could become world champion.

“You know, I’ve been thinking about it a lot. I took a lot of 2019 to establish myself as a monster, as a threat to the rest of the roster, and I proved to everybody that I am more than just this guy who failed in NXT. I think I’ve done that in 2019, and I look at the landscape now of IMPACT Wrestling, and with Sami Callihan gone and just how things are laid out, I don’t think a world championship is out of my grasp. I’ve set my sights and my goals on that. I have two years left on [my] contract and I think, within two years, that is an extremely obtainable goal.”

** Carmella appeared on Yahoo! Style to promote her Capo Cagna wine.

** WWE posted a gallery of female superstars in honor of Women’s History month. Former 4-time WWE Women’s Champion Michelle McCool was not included in the gallery and she commented on that. After the tweets, WWE pushed out another set of photos that included McCool which led to The Undertaker commenting that it was too late.

** Rhino, Tommy Dreamer, Johnny Swinger and Buff Bagwell will all be present at ‘Wrestling 4 A Cause’s’ show on March 5th in Catoosa County, Georgia.

** Nikki and Brie Bella appeared on ‘The Talk’.

** Kyle O’Reilly and Bobby Fish are taking on Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch on the 3/4/20 episode of NXT.

** PAC vs. Chuck Taylor is official for AEW: Dynamite. Colt Cabana is making is AEW Dynamite debut on tonight’s show as he’ll team up with S.C.U. (Frankie Kazarian, Scorpio Sky & Christopher Daniels) to take on The Dark Order (Evil Uno, Stu Grayson, Alex Reynolds & John Silver).

** Ringside Collectibles chatted with Santana and Ortiz at the New York Toy Fair.

** Crunchyroll interviewed Rusev about anime.

** Rocky Romero and Ricky Reyes are now facing Bandido and Rey Horus at ROH Past vs. Present. Flamita was originally supposed to be teaming with Bandido but Flamita is still recovering from surgery.

** Pro-Wrestling EVE uploaded a Toni Storm vs. Jetta Storm match to their YouTube channel:

 

** Paul Robinson has been announced for PROGRESS Wrestling’s 2020 Super Strong Style 16 tournament.

** IMPACT Wrestling’s Madman Fulton spoke with Mirror Sport and opened up about the type of contract he has with IMPACT Wrestling:

“Yes, I am under contract with IMPACT Wrestling. There are different types of contracts and I am on the one which allows me to take independent bookings and I think that it is a good place for me right now. I am able to go out there and hone my craft in front of live crowds and then make sure that my work comes across even more crisp and ready for when I am on TV for IMPACT.”

While chatting about his time in NXT, Fulton talked about how Dusty Rhodes helped him improve as a character in wrestling. Fulton admitted that promos were not always his strong suit and Dusty Rhodes constantly pushed him and stayed on him to get better at it.

“I mean I got very lucky as when I was in NXT, Dusty Rhodes was still running the promo class. Admittedly I sucked and was pretty bad at them. I was trying to be something I wasn’t. I think I probably had a bit of an ego because I had been such a good amateur wrestler and so I had to work hard. It took a lot of talking with Dusty to bring that charisma out. At the time I didn’t like Dusty. I just thought he was out to get me. But later on, the more I think about the lessons he taught me, I think he was just playing me the whole time. He knew if he p***ed me off enough I would try my hardest to stick it to him and that would bring out the best in me.”

Fulton was released from WWE in 2017 and he stated that he was difficult to return to the independent scene and gain respect again.

“I think the hardest thing with leaving was all of those bonds you had built with the people there. Then once you left you are out of their lives and I just sat there alone. The transition was tough. Obviously at the Performance Center there is a way that you learn and they look after you, but it wasn’t until you get out and realize that the check isn’t coming and your ability to eat and live rests on how well you do in the ring. There are certainly some of your peers who are looking at you, having come straight from NXT and are just collecting checks, while in their eyes they have been busting their asses every night. It was tough to gain respect back from the boys and girls, for sure.”

** PAC is going on tour with the Australia-based World Series Wrestling promotion.

** On next week’s edition of IMPACT Wrestling, Michael Elgin and Eddie Edwards will have match five of their best of five series. Rhino is set to take on Madman Fulton, and Mahabali Shera and Rohit Raju of the Desi Hit Squad are taking on The Rascalz (Dezmond Xavier & Zachary Wentz). Also, Madison Rayne will provide an answer to IMPACT Knockouts Champion Jordynne Grace’s open challenge.

** PWInsider is reporting that Teddy Hart is back in jail and is now incarcerated at the Richmond City Jail in Richmond, Virginia. Hart was also arrested on February 12th after being pulled over and he was charged with possession of a schedule III narcotic and possession with intent to sell or distribute.

** Joey Janela announced that Lord Adrean and Tahir2x, who are the individuals that have been going viral on social media for their Walmart wrestling, are scheduled to appear at Spring Break 4.

** Episode 23 of AEW Dark premiered on the All Elite Wrestling YouTube channel. The show featured Britt Baker and Penelope Ford teaming up to take on Riho and Yuka Sakazaki. The show included several promo segments, highlights from the Revolution pay-per-view and aftermath segments following the pay-per-view.

 

** WWE Hall Of Famer Mick Foley joined David LaGreca and Mark Henry on Busted Open Radio. Towards the end of the conversation, Mick Foley heaped praise onto Drew McIntyre. Shortly after McIntyre was released from WWE, Mick Foley received a video message which featured McIntyre cutting a promo for an independent promotion. After watching the video, Foley sent a message to Paul “Triple H” Levesque and told Levesque to keep his eyes on McIntyre.

“Within a week or two after leaving, I got a message from Drew and he said, ‘Mick, I know we don’t know each other that well but I respect your opinion. I’m trying something different. I apologize in advance for the language, but it’s an 18 and older audience.’ So I check it out, I press play and there’s a guy who looks like Drew McIntyre, but is in a sense, a different human being, cutting this in-passion promo that’s full of emotion and full of life and I’m looking at my screen going, ‘Where did this come from and where was this? And what is this guy capable of doing?’ And the first thing I did and this is not something I do often. I can count the number of times I’ve done this. I have a couple of fingers leftover. I texted Triple H and said, ‘Hunter, I know he just left here but you need to keep an eye on Drew McIntyre’ and I think I used that phrase, ‘He’s almost like an entirely different human being,’ and so for any guy that leaves WWE and we all reserve the right to cash in on what we’ve done, to work the indies, to sell our gimmicks. No one will think less of us for that but, while doing that, simultaneously keep your eye on the long-term game. What he did is inspirational. It should be like a road map for everyone who leaves and believes they’re capable of doing something better. I really admire what he did. He put in the work, he transformed himself and now he’s a veritable WrestleMania main event performer and I just wanna give props to a guy who could’ve gone the easy route, and chose not to and its paid off for him.”

** Deadline is reporting that the horror film ‘Jakob’s Wife’ has wrapped up production. CM Punk has a role in the film.

** Cody and Brandi Rhodes visited Planned Pethood International.

** Tajiri is now set for All Japan Pro Wrestling’s ‘Champion Carnival’ tournament.

** Scott Hall is scheduled for Geek’d Con this coming August in Shreveport, Louisiana.

** Mascarita Dorada (El Torito) is set for MLW’s ‘Intimidation Games’ event on April 18th.

** Big Show is joining Corey Graves on the next edition of WWE After The Bell.

** Lita did an interview with Justin Barrasso of Sports Illustrated to promote she, Gail Kim and Christy Hemme’s ‘KAYfABE’ wrestling show that they are planning on launching. Lita was asked does she think this project could damage her relationship with WWE and she stated that she can’t be worried about making anyone upset and is hoping WWE would be proud of them for their venture.

“Our goal is to actually make progress and make this business better. I would like to think they’re business-minded and can see that. This project means so much to me, so whatever it takes, I want to make this project work. I can’t spend time worrying about making someone mad. We’re making decisions for the purity of this project and to make it happen, these are conversations that need to happen in wrestling in order for us to move forward. While they could not like it, I’m hoping they are proud of us as business people.”

** Ring of Honor announced that Alex Gracia and Yuji Nagata are joining the fields of the respective ROH World Women’s Title tourney and the ROH Pure Title tourney.

** Here’s a new episode of WWE ‘The Bump’ with guest Sasha Banks. The likes of Norman Smiley and SmackDown Women’s Champion Bayley joined the show to speak to Sasha Banks. The Bump aired footage of Sasha recently training with Amazing Red and training at The New England Pro Wrestling Academy. Towards the end of Banks’ appearance, it was announced that she and Bayley are taking on Naomi and Lacey Evans this Friday on SmackDown. Dakota Kai and Raquel Gonzalez appeared via satellite and it was announced that Dakota Kai and Tegan Nox’s Steel Cage match will open tonight’s NXT. WWE Universal Champion Goldberg was the final guest to appear on this episode.

 

** Scott Fishman of TV Insider conducted an interview with NXT’s Tegan Nox.

** Sports Illustrated also pushed out their interview with Tegan Nox. During the conversation, Tegan was asked to name the three most talented women in wrestling and here was her answer:

“Candice LeRae is the best female wrestler in the world, if not a top three best wrestler in the world, male or female, and Io Shirai and Bayley. Seeing Bayley change is so cool. It’s hard to pick three. You’ve got Meiko Satomura, who has been doing this for so long and it’s just an honor to work with her. But I would, 100 percent, put Candice LeRae on top.”

** WWE has filed to trademark “Left Right Left Right” and “LRLR” which is a spin-off of the UpUpDownDown YouTube channel. Left Right Left Right features various other WWE talents besides Xavier Woods but the videos still premiere on Woods’ YouTube channel.

** Jim Ross is the next guest on AEW’s Unrestricted podcast.

** Thunder Rosa filed to trademark her in-ring name on March 2nd.

** IMPACT Wrestling is airing a TNA special on March 31st at 10 PM EST immediately following the scheduled IMPACT Wrestling program at 8 PM EST on AXS TV. The TNA special will spotlight TNA talent ahead of the throwback show during WrestleMania weekend.

** Former ROH World Champion Dalton Castle turned 34-years old on March 4th.

** Mandy Rose did an interview with Entrepreneur.com.

** During an interview with SPORTbible, Samoa Joe stated that he would love to mix it up with The Undertaker before Undertaker retires.

“Absolutely. You know, I think the things that especially now, that I appreciate about ‘Taker’s work are much more on display now than they probably ever have been, and yeah, I would be down to get down with ‘Taker, whether it would be now or whenever in the future.”

** WWE announced that ‘WWE Untold: Dennis Rodman’ will premiere on the WWE Network on March 22nd.

** Ringside Collectibles released their interview with Jungle Boy and Luchasaurus.

** While chatting with Sporting News, Tegan Nox spoke about the handful of people that have been commenting on her social media pages and telling her she shouldn’t be wrestling in Street Fights and Cage matches because of her injury history.

“Yeah, you wouldn’t believe the amount of people (commenting on) the Street Fight, especially the amount of people that were commenting on my Twitter, my Instagram, everything just ripping me apart saying that I shouldn’t be in these matches. It was insane to see how much negativity people were bringing instead of the positives. Like (they should be saying), ‘These women are doing the first Street Fight in NXT women’s history’. Instead of looking at it like that, they went straight for the, ‘Oh, they both had ACL surgeries and shouldn’t be doing this.’ It was crazy to me.”

Nox also reflected on the devastating knee injury she suffered in the 2018 Mae Young Classic. It wasn’t until she watched the match back that she realized how quiet it was in the Full Sail arena. She thought that her career was over and with that being her second knee injury, she thought her run in WWE was done.

“Honestly, I didn’t realize how quiet it was until I watched the match back and all I could hear were the doctors talking to me. So, to me, it just seemed like everything was super loud still. It was such a crazy experience. I legitimately thought that my career was over. Not in a sense of I couldn’t come back from it, but that they wouldn’t want someone who at the time was 23 and going to have to have another knee surgery. I just thought they were going to pass me to the side and be done with me, but they worked so hard becoming the best agents in the world on both occasions and brought me back stronger than I could ever imagine I’d be if I didn’t have the knee surgeries.”

** TNT Extreme Wrestling announced that David Starr is defending the TNT World Championship against Joey Janela at their ‘Supreme Extreme’ show on April 17th.

** To promote AEW: Dynamite in Colorado, The Denver Post wrote up a preview about the show.

If any of the quotes from the following podcasts or video interviews are used, please credit those sources and provide an H/T and link back to POST Wrestling for the transcriptions.

About Andrew Thompson 330 Articles
A Maryland native and graduate of Norfolk State University, Andrew Thompson has been covering wrestling since 2017.