That somehow includes the WWE, too.
The Georgia State Athletic and Entertainment Commission are proposing a bunch of non-sense rules to be amended into wrestling whenever a show takes place in their state. These guidelines are meant to bring wrestling into the realm of boxing and mixed martial arts, but not as cool as either of the two. However, with the recent events occurring in wrestling or sports entertainment, including an array of staph infections, murder-suicides, and wrestlers dying young, these rules may help bring some safety and precaution for wrestling. Right?
Some of these newly proposed regulations are pretty ridiculous. For example:
“If a competitor touches the ropes, the referee is to move them back to the center of the ring.”
“There will be no physical or verbal aggression or threats levied toward any member of the audience.”
Further, blading or self-inflicted cuts are prohibited; no fighting outside the ring barrier; foreign objects must be approved by the athletic state commission prior to its use; wrestlers have a ten count to break an illegal hold; wrestlers are not allowed to have any grease, lotion, or other substances on their body. And, my favorite, every wrestler must wear clean and appropriate attire that properly meets the rules proposed by the commission.
Wait a second. Where is the over the top rope disqualification rule??
Yet, the most important proposed guideline states that there must be a six foot barrier from the ring and an additional four feet between the the barrier and the first row; which adds up to ten feet of empty space. This regulation may kill the independent wrestling scene in Georgia. Many of the smaller indy shows run in smaller venues that, because of this regulation, would not be legally cleared to run an event in such a venue.
The commission is due to vote on the regulations today, and if passed, this could be very detrimental for wrestling in the independent circuit. Apparently, the WWE is unaffected by these rules, because of a prior statute that excludes any company worth $25mil or more to be included. That’s too bad.. right??
UPDATE: The committee has adjourned and stated that they will postpone any decision on the matter until February. The committee agreed to hear out the industry’s opinions and have invited various promoters to form a group and present their opinions to the committee for further revision of the proposed guidelines made by the commission.