In the days leading up to last week’s advance taping for WrestleMania 36, several WWE superstars were pulled from the event at the last minute as they quarantined themselves — a necessary step in avoiding the risks posed by the coronavirus pandemic. While the company has maintained that it is properly testing its performers and employees for everyone’s health and safety, former WWE Intercontinental Champion Ryback believes that is not the case, as suggested in a recent episode of his podcast.
As quoted by WrestlingNews.co, Ryback commented on the latest episode of his Conversation with the Big Guy podcast that WWE’s doctors are as “corrupt as corrupt can be,” which makes it unlikely, in his view, that these medical officials are taking the necessary precautions against the coronavirus. He suggested that their job is simply to ensure that wrestlers are able to continuously perform regardless of the circumstances. In that light, he alleged that WWE’s medical team was merely “screening the talent” but not necessarily testing them for COVID-19 in recent weeks.
Elaborating further on his point, Ryback remarked that it’s now a well-known fact that people with COVID-19 could be asymptomatic but still be able to spread the disease to other individuals. As he believes WWE might have ignored this fact, the former superstar warned that it’s possible there are some wrestlers within the company who may have been unknowingly infected by the coronavirus.
“By allowing talent to come in who could have it for two weeks and not even know before they start showing signs, which they all started getting it a couple weeks ago, because that’s what is happening now. Performers are coming down with it, from all being forced to f*cking travel and all this stupid sh*t. They never should have been put in that position.”
Talking about WrestleMania 36 and how WWE supposedly took several safety precautions ahead of the event’s taping, Ryback accused the company of being so “focused” on making sure the show’s taping would go off without any further hitches — possibly to the point of not actually testing anyone for COVID-19 until the last minute. He warned that this would result in WWE getting what it wants regarding this year’s WrestleMania, albeit at the expense of its employees’ well-being.
Since being released by WWE in 2016, Ryback has not been shy about discussing his experiences with the promotion in an unflattering light, including those related to medical issues. Just months after his release, he accused WWE of mishandling the serious ankle injury he suffered in 2010, claiming he was referred to a shady doctor who had been sued multiple times for malpractice.