The logistics of WrestleMania at MetLife Stadium
Long time no see everyone. Now that we're on the "Road to WrestleMania," I expect to be stop by the Cage more often. Many thanks to Anthony for holding down the fort.
The announcement today that WrestleMania 29 will be on held next year at Met-Life Stadium is great news for wrestling fans here in the New York Metropolitan Area, but it raises some logistical issues--the obvious having to do with weather.
Consider this, on April 11 (the same date as WrestleMania 29) of last year, the average temperature in East Rutherford, NJ was just 46 degrees, and about a half-inch of rain fell. In 2006, there was some snow fall in early April.
Then again, in 2010, it reached 91 degrees on April 11.
In an event, WWE has to be aware of what it's getting itself into by holding an outdoor wrestling event in the Northeast just two weeks removed from the winter. That's not to say it's not worth doing. In fact, the prospect of snowfall as a backdrop for WrestleMania is rather intriguing. But, to be sure, WWE will have to make some efforts to protect its performers from the elements--if not its fans.
Die-hard WWE fans probably won't mind enduring some rough weather to see the biggest wrestling show of the year in person, but it’s just not comfortable—or safe—to have pro wrestlers dressed in what amounts to their underwear potentially performing in the cold, rain or even snow.
I’d think WWE could mitigate the problem easily enough. WWE has already employed the use of a kind of roof over the ring for some recent outdoor editions of WrestleMania, including in 2008 when it actually did rain during the Orlando event.
As for the cold, I’m reminded of the kind of outdoor heaters I’ve sat under when I’ve dined at the Cheesecake Factory during some chilly nights. WWE could set something similar up around the ring and the rampway to the stage. I wouldn’t expect any “falls count anywhere” matches on the card.
They could also just make every match on the show an inferno match in order to keep the wrestlers and ringside fans nice and toasty.
Some other issues that come to mind: Where do you host all the other WrestleMania week events? Rather than hold them in the drab and tough-to-access Meadowlands, the temptation might be to do so in the far sexier New York City, but that wouldn’t be fare to the State of New Jersey, which is expecting some serious revenue from hosting WrestleMania.
I’ll predict that the WWE Hall of Fame ceremony stays at the Meadowlands inside the IZOD Center, which is about the right size for the event. It’s likely that the post-Mania Monday Night Raw is held at the venue as well.
I wouldn’t rule out WWE hosting the Smackdown tapings on the Tuesday after WrestleMania at a New York venue like Madison Square Garden or the Nassau Coliseum.
As for the numerous Fan Axess convention shows, it’s tough to think of a suitable venue in New Jersey. The State has some venues including the Meadowlands Exposition Center in Seacaucus or the New Jersey Convention and Exposition Center in New Jersey, but I’d bet WWE would prefer to hold the events just on the other side of the river at the far more flashy Jacob Javits Center on Manhattan’s West Side.
For those of you who hate driving to the Meadowlands, which is to say just about all of you, allow me to offer you some advice as Newsday’s resident MTA reporter. The Long Island Rail Road and New Jersey Transit typically offer one-ticket rides to the Meadowlands for major events.
And they don’t get much more major than WrestleMania.