WrestleMania lineup in Orlando changes in wake of coronavirus fears, illness

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ORLANDO, Fla. — The city of Orlando is making professional wrestling history this week — but not the kind of history it wants, thanks to the coronavirus.

At least five WWE wrestlers were sidelined or refused to participate in WrestleMania 36 because of illness or COVID-19 fears, according to numerous published reports, and more are unhappy the event wasn’t postponed or canceled.

There have been no reports of wrestlers testing positive for COVID-19. However, The Miz came to the WrestleMania taping while displaying symptoms of an undetermined illness and spent time around other wrestlers and staff members before being sent home, according to PWInsider.

Roman Reigns, who had been scheduled for one of WrestleMania’s main events, voluntarily withdrew from the show. According to a report in Pro Wrestling Sheet, he was upset that Miz was allowed in the building with his illness and no longer felt comfortable wrestling in a compromised environment. In 2018, Reigns had a widely publicized bout with leukemia, which is now in remission.

Three other wrestlers who had been scheduled to appear — Rey Mysterio, Buddy Murphy and Dana Brooke — are self-quarantining at home; their conditions are not known. A sixth, Andrade, is off the show with a slight rib injury.

According to PWInsider, pressure to move forward with WrestleMania while so many other sports and entertainment events were being canceled came from the top — WWE chairman Vince McMahon. The recording of the show ended Thursday, just before Orlando mayor Buddy Dyer’s order to close non-essential businesses went into effect.

“There is only one person who felt that they should have went forward with WrestleMania and that’s why they’re going forward with WrestleMania and that’s Vince,” PWInsider reported.

WrestleMania, which was expected to draw tens of thousands of fans to Raymond James Stadium in Tampa next month, was moved to the WWE Performance Center in east Orlando, where it was recorded Wednesday and Thursday in front of an empty arena.

WWE has not officially confirmed any absences or changes to the WrestleMania lineup — some changes are expected to play out in TV storylines during the next week.

The show, which had been set for April 5 in Tampa, will air April 4 and 5 on the streaming WWE Network. Orlando becomes the third city, after New York and Los Angeles, to host three WrestleManias. The first two, in 2008 and 2017, drew more than 70,000 fans each to Camping World Stadium.

Other main events for the show, including Brock Lesnar vs. Drew McIntyre, Edge vs. Randy Orton and Charlotte Flair vs. Rhea Ripley, remain unchanged.

Below are spoilers for the WrestleMania lineup, but no match results are revealed.


With Reigns out, Goldberg faced Braun Strowman for the WWE Universal championship, according to WrestlingInc.

Dana Brooke had been scheduled to compete in a six-way match for the Smackdown women’s title; that became a five-way match.

With Andrade’s injury, tag-team partner Angel Garza teamed with NXT’s Austin Theory to challenge the Street Profits for the Raw tag-team championships, according to the Wrestling Observer.

Murphy was removed from his role accompanying Seth Rollins to the ring for his match against Kevin Owens.

Miz had been scheduled to join John Morrison for a Smackdown tag-team title defense; Morrison reportedly faced either Jimmy or Jey Uso in a singles match

Mysterio was set for a match at WrestleMania, but it was never revealed before his decision to pull out of the show last week.


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