The guys at World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) in the US have absolutely no chill.
With the world in panic over the coronavirus, WWE owner Vince McMahon and his staff have been hard at work making sure their show goes on.
And this coming weekend, wrestling’s biggest event Wrestlemania will be staged in an empty arena.
Now I’ve praised these Yanks before for being able to put on a great show and as a lifelong fan of this sort of entertainment, I can’t wait to see how they will attempt to pull this one off in the most difficult of circumstances.
I have watched some of their shows in recent weeks and with no fans at the arena, superstars have struggled to capture the same sort of attention they usually do from viewers.
You can actually tell that they are waiting for fan feedback to feed off from.
With it being entertainment in front of a “live studio audience”, the wrestlers are finding themselves in unfamiliar territory - the sort of territory they are perhaps used to when training and therefore I believe we might see a few more slip-ups than we usually do.
But while an empty arena is a big challenge for wrestlers, “real sports” like rugby don’t have the same challenges.
I saw the Down Under crew has already made plans to stage a domestic tournament after Super Rugby was suspended.
The plan is to play a round-robin Australia tournament - with possibly the Western Force replacing the Sunwolves while they wait for Super Rugby to resume.
They need the money and I understand that staff salaries have to be paid, therefore the show must go on.
But sportsmen aren’t immune to this deadly virus and if you have one contaminated player on the field, you would have to be a pretty scared rugby player not to come into contact with him.
It’s not like you can tell your opponent to stop a metre away from you and then pass the ball.
I see this same sort of scenario playing off at local shops where owners just don’t give a damn about the welfare of their staff.
The show must go on and money must be made.
Again, I understand the need for these shops to be open, but when does it become greed?
Is it not time to invest in a proper online shopping plan for customers?
As for rugby in South Africa, I really hope they consult the players thoroughly before making a decision on whether there will be a domestic competition during this crisis time.
It won’t be that difficult to organise - without fans, a rugby match can easily continue with fewer than 100 people in the stadium.
But I reckon there are a number of sides to this story.
Yes, you will get those players that would like nothing more than to get onto the field and strut their stuff - especially the younger ones who can do with the match fees. This is true even at club level.
Then you have the senior citizens who couldn’t care less about a game of rugby at this point in time - their only concern is their young family and making sure they are safe.
Yes, the extra money would be good, but what’s money when your life is in danger?
The decision-makers, though, are the men who have to pay the bills and you get the feeling that they will be chasing that TV rights money.
Yes, finances of a number of franchises have come to a standstill in recent weeks and they will find it tough to pay bills - ons weet mos hoe lyk sake hier in ons eie huis, but we can’t afford to exploit our stars just to make a few bucks.
Because we don’t know how long this virus will be around, there are some tough decisions to be made all around.
This time, however, those decisions shouldn’t be made at board level alone - the key role players (read workers) must be consulted and must actually have the final say in the matter.
As for this weekend’s Wrestlemania, I’m not sure what the decision process looked like over there, but I will be watching the awesome rofstoei.
With a legend like Goldberg facing off against Roman Reigns in the squared circle, no fan will say no thanks to some “sporting” action.
Then I also hope Drew McIntyre can kick Brock Lesnar’s ass while we wait for some news on the possible return of some local action.
If you’re not a wrestling fan, good luck finding something sporting-wise to look forward to this coming weekend.
Until next time...