The California Department of Public Health and Governor Gavin Newsome released a statement late Wednesday night recommending the postponing or cancelation of large gatherings for at least the rest of the month in regards to the COVID-19 pandemic. The recommendations include canceling or postponing any events with 250 or more people, including concerts, conferences, and professional, college, and school sporting events. The recommendations by the state will likely lead the cancelation or postponement of many pro-wrestling and MMA events in Southern California this month.
“Changing our actions for a short period of time will save the life of one or more people you know — that’s the choice before us,” Newsom said in a statement. “Each of us has extraordinary power to slow the spread of this disease. Not holding that concert or community event can have cascading effects — saving dozens of lives and preserving critical healthcare resources that your family may need a month from now.”
There are currently 26 professional wrestling events in Southern California scheduled for the remainder of March. There is also a sold-out MMA event, Lights Out Fighting in Commerce scheduled for Friday night.
As this information came out late on Wednesday night, there have been no official event cancelations yet. Several wrestling promoters were contacted and all advised they are assessing the situation and had not yet decided how to move forward. In some cases, the event venues will likely make the decision for the promotion.
While some wrestling promotions likely would not draw anywhere near 250 people, the state also added that smaller gatherings held in venues that do not allow social distancing of six feet per person should be postponed or canceled.
Several Northern California pro-wrestling events had been canceled earlier in the day, including APW’s event this weekend in Daly City.
For now, this directive will only impact independent wrestling promotions in Southern California, as WWE has not announced any upcoming events in the area outside of next year’s Wrestlemania week, and AEW’s debut in the region isn’t scheduled until May 20.
WWE released a statement on Wednesday stating they are making contingency plans in case any of their upcoming events are canceled by government officials, civil authorities and/or local venues.
The NBA announced that it was suspending its season on Wednesday and the NCAA announced its college basketball tournament will be played with no fans in attendance.
We will post updates in regards to any pro-wrestling or MMA event cancelations or any events that choose to defy the state’s directive.