MLW is preparing for its return in front of live fans this July with a card set for Philadelphia followed by events in Texas and Chicago later in the year.
The company ran its season finale of Fusion this past Wednesday and will return on Saturday, July 10th at the 2300 Arena in Philadelphia with live fans. They have also announced dates for North Richland Hills, Texas on September 11th and a return to Cicero Stadium in Chicago on November 6th.
Earlier this week, MLW CEO Court Bauer spoke with POST Wrestling about the process of returning to live events with fans and the capacity limits they are aiming for on these dates:
The nice thing about Pennsylvania or New York or some of the other states is that they have a governing body in the state athletic commission. Mr. (Gregory) Sirb out there in Pennsylvania has done a great job updating us, giving us criteria for running throughout the pandemic when there was a moment to run. It’s was very complicated to figure it out.
We have an in-house COVID compliance officer, it takes a lot of the decision-making out of my hands and puts it in his hands for what you can do, what is feasible, what is safe for the talent and crew, their families, the staff. Then, when you introduce the concept of bringing fans back – how does that work? And so, the 2300 Arena also has their COVID compliance officer, I think everyone does, I bet even POST Wrestling does. You work with them, you make sure everyone has the best practices for social distancing, and then, of course, we have this weird thing happening in New York where within a few days, I don’t know if its 24 hours or next week but everything is going to open up wide. Everything is open and it’s going to blow past all the capacity limits and everything will be back to standard times. Will the world do a 180 like what’s going on in India? Who knows? We don’t have a crystal ball.
We know that Pennsylvania is going to have a rolling escalation in capacity and it will go from, whatever, 25 to 30 percent. That’s the plan right now. Then, it will go to 45, 50 (percent) whatever. In the week it could be at 100 percent, we don’t know. We do know that we are basically sold out, we have a few tickets left at our current capacity. I expect if we went to 100 percent capacity we would sell out. Dallas is at full capacity and it’s already at about 60 percent of the tickets are gone for that one, which is insane. Then, Chicago, we were originally looking to start June 5th in Chicago but then, they rolled back to either phase four or phase three, which was like, you can only do indoor events at a capacity building off 200 people or less and you could only have something, like, 20 or 40 percent capacity, so Cicero (Stadium) was disqualified. We had already sold too many tickets. So, we were looking at our schedule that’s why we moved it to November. That poor show has been moved from February 2020 to April 2020 to June 2021 to now November 2021. I’m praying that show doesn’t get moved again, it shouldn’t but the poor fans of Chicago have been bounced around by that one.
The show in July at the 2300 Arena will be the promotion’s first one with fans since March 2020 and will feature the first MLW appearance by the former Dario Cueto, who was revealed as the mysterious “El Jefe” on the season finale of Fusion.