Back in the days of the territories and the belief that pro wrestling matches had legit winners and losers, the sport was treated like any other and had to meet the requirements of various state athletic commissions on pro wrestling. After it was well known that wrestling was choreographed and not legally known as a competition, dealing with athletic commissions became less and less common.
But even if pro wrestling is “sports entertainment,” it is still dangerous and it would be wise for there to be some sort of regulation in case people get injured.
Since WrestleMania is in New Orleans, the Louisiana Boxing and Wrestling Commission passed some rules just for WrestleMania week that all promotions must follow, from WWE down to the independents.
Uproxx and Post Wrestling revealed some things that Russell Naquin, head of the pro wrestling division, talked about. Many of these rules are likely already done by WWE in the first place, this is moreso for the benefit of local promotions.
The first two are rather self explanatory, no blood and no piledrivers. Two things WWE doesn’t really do anymore because of a risk of contracting a disease via blood and risk of neck injury, paralysis and concussion if a piledriver isn’t executed right. The only thing this might affect is The Undertaker’s Tombstone Piledriver if he were to come back for WrestleMania but that might be it.
In addition, in accordance to the risk of blood diseases spreading, all the wrestlers who are participating must show blood test results proving they are negative for such things as Hepatitis B and C as well as HIV. And those results must be provided the day of the show to a commission official who will be there. In addition, the official will conduct a physical and have an EMT on hand, which makes sense.
The final two rules are more wrestling centric than anything. A promoter has to have a Louisiana promoters license to have a show in Louisiana. I’m assuming Vince McMahon has a license, though it would be kind of interesting if he didn’t and WrestleMania would have to be canceled. In addition, wrestlers must be licensed to compete in Louisiana and pay $25 to wrestle in Louisiana. I’m assuming that’s to help the commission pay for the EMT’s and officials and I’m also assuming that WrestleMania performers will just take the $25 out of their event paycheck or even WWE just pays for everyone but I wonder how it would be if someone just said they were refusing to wrestle because of that.
All in all, these are all things that make sense. I’m a bit confused that these are things that just came up during WrestleMania week but okay. In addition, unless it’s a permanent rule, there is no regulation on moves to the head other than piledrivers. So that means chair shots and other moves that could cause concussions are not mentioned here. Hopefully, something like that is addressed on a permanent basis.