As we’ve been reporting here on eWn, WWE has been talking about moving their ThunderDome concept out of the Amway Center in Orlando, FL. While they recently announced a short-term contract extension with the arena through November, they are still planning to switch venues.
eWrestlingNews.com has exclusively learned that WWE will be moving their production to Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Florida. Tropicana Field opened in 1990 and was originally known as the Florida Suncoast Dome. In 1993, the Tampa Bay Lightning moved to the facility and its name was changed to the ThunderDome.
As of this writing, the residency at the venue is expected to last for awhile. Of course, the MLB isn’t expected to be back until early 2021 so the Tampa Bay Rays wouldn’t need the facility until at least March or April. We know that WWE has a deal with the Amway Center that was extended for one month until the end of November so it appears that the move to Tropicana Field will take place in early December. The NBA season is set to begin on December 22nd so the Orlando Magic would need the Amway Center to practice and host games unless they do a “bubble” season again and that seems possible at this point. There is also minor-league hockey that takes place at the arena and it takes staff about three days to lay down the ice for those games.
Despite the COVID-19 pandemic raging out of control these days, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis continues to say that he has no plans to shut down the state and is actually encouraging people to pack stadiums. Of course, WWE and other sports entities set their own guidelines so it remains to be seen what WWE plans on doing in an outdoor venue.
Stay tuned as we hear more.