Will Delta Variant of COVID-19 Derail AEW's Show Plans?

Posted By Caroline Walsh on 07/28/21

AEW is set to hit two major cities in September with the All Out PPV (and two episodes of TV) in Chicago, then the Dynamite Grand Slam in New York. However, Cassidy Haynes & Bodyslam.net report that with cases of COVID-19 going back up due to the Delta variant, there is concern in AEW that their plans will be halted.

Due to the rise in cases of the variant, cities and states in the US have been changing their mask and virus testing mandates. AEW is worried about the Delta cases interrupting their plans for shows in the two aforementioned cities, as well as St. Louis and more. There have been talks in the company about what to do if there is another shutdown, including a possible return to Daily’s Place in Jacksonville for another extended stay.

It’s been described as an “all hands on deck” situation as of late but “ultimately Tony has to make a decision about what is right for the talent, staff, and [especially] the fans”. The CDC is currently recommending masks again, even for some of those who are vaccinated. The worry in AEW is that large gatherings will be banned again.

The main concern at the moment is with Chicago and New York, as both cities have been working to stop the surge of new cases. Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfood said that the mask mandate could return to the city, along with other possible restrictions. In New York, municipal workers are now required to get vaccinated or take weekly COVID-19 tests. In St. Louis, an indoor mask mandate was reinstated on Monday.

As of now, AEW is moving forward with their current plans, but are “paying close and constant attention” to what’s going on in these and other cities.