- WWE WrestleMania 36 is tentatively scheduled to emanate from the Performance Center on April 5th
- The event will be the company’s first to take place with no audience in attendance in response to the COVID-19 outbreak
- Who do early odds favor emerging victories at WWE’s Show of Shows?
WrestleMania 36 is in something of a state of flux at the moment with all major entertainment events and sport seasons getting postponed and, in some cases, canceled due to the emerging coronavirus pandemic. The Show of Shows, which was originally supposed to emanate from Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, has since been moved to WWE’s Performance Center in Orlando.
For what it’s worth, there is still a strong chance the event is postponed or outright canceled if the state of Florida steps in or if anyone on the crew tests positive for the coronavirus. As unfortunate of a situation as that would be, it could cause the company to wait and ensure that ‘Mania is held in front of actual fans, even if it’s a few months down the road.
Until then, though, fans can expect WrestleMania to go on as planned on April 5th. A slew of matches have already been announced for the card and sportsbooks have odds up on who bettors are picking to reign supreme in each outing.
WrestleMania 36 Opening Odds
|“The Fiend” Bray Wyatt||-400|
All odds taken March 17th
WWE Championship Changing Hands?
The outcomes of most of the matches are set in stone, but considering there will no longer be an audience in attendance for the event (as of now, anyway), some are them are bound to change, specifically the WWE Championship and Raw Women’s Championship clashes.
Roman Reigns winning the Universal Championship from Goldberg is virtually a lock, “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt beating John Cena has been heavily teased, and Charlotte Flair regaining the NXT Women’s Championship would be a disastrous decision.
However, Drew McIntyre’s big moment may very well be delayed for a later date, while Becky Lynch’s Raw Women’s title reign could extend beyond WrestleMania.
McIntyre has been in the midst of an aggressive push since winning the men’s Royal Rumble match and has been primed to take the WWE title off Lesnar. The time is right for WWE to crown him the new face of the flagship show, but needless to say, it would have a much bigger impact if there were fans there to give his title win the reaction it deserves.
Lesnar pinning McIntyre at ‘Mania would undeniably hinder his momentum, but it might make his eventual victory over The Beast Incarnate that much more meaningful. It would also prolong their feud until the summer and give them more time to build it up once WWE’s road schedule is back to normal.
Once fans realize that Lesnar retaining his title at WrestleMania is a legitimate possibility, the odds are likely to fluctuate in Lesnar’s favor.
Lynch vs Baszler is 50/50
The same can be said for Lynch vs. Baszler, which can also go either way.
Baszler has been on a roll over the past month and was booked to look incredibly dominant at the Elimination Chamber when she forced five of Raw’s finest competitors to submit. Many members of the WWE Universe assume she’ll be walking out of WrestleMania with the gold, but it’s important to remember that Lynch has been subtly teasing a heel turn lately and beating Baszler could cement her character change.
Like Lesnar vs. McIntyre, this is another instance where WWE could change the outcome because of how there won’t be anyone at the Performance Center to boo Lynch if she wins. Baszler shouldn’t lose clean, of course, but the finish can be booked in a way where she’s protected in defeat and Lynch narrowly escapes with her title intact.
Could WrestleMania Be Postponed?
With WrestleMania not for another two and a half weeks, there is plenty of time left for the event to be bumped until the summer. It should be noted that it’s unknown when things will go back to normal and thus WrestleMania in June (regardless of whether it’s held) could be too ambitious.
WWE can’t wait forever to hold the anticipated pay-per-view, and with an offseason near impossible for the company, it might be in their best interest to get it out of the way right now. In the meantime, fans can bet that WWE will be keeping a close eye on everything coronavirus-related so they can make the smartest decision possible in regards to how WrestleMania will be delivered.
If nothing else, WrestleMania should be a shorter show this year if it does indeed air from the Performance Center. More matchups are expected to be added to the card in the coming weeks with Edge vs. Randy Orton, Kevin Owens vs. Seth Rollins, and The Undertaker vs. AJ Styles all set to transpire.
Every episode of Raw and SmackDown being held at the PC on the road to WrestleMania will definitely take a toll on the storylines and overall excitement fans have for the event, but the company should be commended nonetheless for continuing to produce original content during such a tough time.
WrestleMania will be yet another example of that.