The new Nassau Coliseum is readying for another first — its first bodyslam.
The Coliseum’s operators and WWE have told Newsday that the first WWE show in the new Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum will take place on April 10 — a live edition of the cable TV juggernaut Monday Night Raw.
WWE has a long history in the Coliseum, where it ran its first show in 1979. Over the next four decades, the Coliseum was the site of several monumental pro wrestling events, from WrestleMania 2 in 1986 to 2002’s SummerSlam. Its last event in the old Coliseum was held on Memorial Day 2015.
“Some of WWE’s most iconic moments have happened at the Coliseum,” said Keith Sheldon, senior vice president of programming for Brooklyn Sports & Entertainment, which manages the new Coliseum. “WWE will once again have a home on Long Island as part of the dynamic programming we are bringing to the new Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum presented by New York Community Bank.”
The Uniondale arena helped launch the careers of several Long Island wrestling greats, from Merrick native Zack Ryder to East Setauket’s Mick Foley.
Glendale, Queens native, William “Big Cass” Morrissey said he still has photos in the top drawer of his desk from the first WWE show he attended at the Coliseum in 1994, when he was just 6. The 7-foot-tall Morrissey looks forward to stepping into the building for the first time as a WWE superstar.
“I always sat there in the crowd at those shows at the Nassau Coliseum, and I remember telling my dad, ‘One day I’m going to be in that ring,’” he said. “I honestly believed it even from a young age. Now going back there, and being in that ring, it’s going to be very special.”
Tickets for WWE Monday Night Raw at the Nassau Coliseum go on sale Feb. 11 at noon.