Confirmations regarding this upcoming edition of SmackDown have now received by the WWE, officially. Uncertainties surrounded around the show whether the company could carry out tapings as per schedule amid the coronavirus pandemic as the shutdown mandate is applied around the entire state of Florida. But WWE was able to arrange a new set of tapings at the Performance Center situated in the state.
WWE officials have reportedly issued a memo to wrestlers through mails and staff to inform how they plan to keep everyone safe from the coronavirus as they plan to carry out the next set of TV tapings that take place, later this week.
SmackDown is expected to air in a live format as the taping would take place on Friday itself whereas Raw may be taped ahead of Monday. Details of rules and guidelines maintained by WWE has been revealed by various wrestling outlets.
The e-mail memo sent by WWE outlined protocols for working during the coronavirus outbreak. WWE medical team will note down each individual’s (superstars and staffs) temperature before they enter the WWE Performance Center, according to TMZ. The talents were advised to arrive early to the building as the safety measures could cause some delays while entering the Performance Center.
It was noted that once workers enter the Performance Center, they are encouraged to wear a face mask. If they can’t get one, they are encouraged to make one.
The memo had instructions on how to produce a mask by sewing fabric, wearing a bandana, or ripping off an old t-shirt sleeve to cover the face. The masks will have to come off when cameras will be rolling for the content tapings.
WWE also reminded everyone to wash their hands with soap & warm water for 20 seconds before and after handling masks or as often as they can. More on the procedures were published by wrestlingINC.com,
“WWE plans to sequester talents at one hotel in Orlando, and to tape in “waves” so they can follow CDC guidelines for the outbreak. They also plan to take extra safety measures at the Performance Center, such as changing the ropes, aprons, turnbuckles, and canvas after each match, in addition to a complete sanitizing of the Performance Center as they work.”
WWE confirmed that the next episode of SmackDown will consist of a WrestleMania championship rematch where new Women’s Tag Team Champions Alexa Bliss and Nikki Cross defends against the Kabuki Warriors – Asuka and Kairi Sane.
Also, Braun Strowman will begin his era as the new Universal Champion. Several episodes of WWE NXT, RAW and SmackDown will be taped at the Performance Center until next week to bank episodes.