ROH started up once again after months of not producing any new content. The COVID-19 pandemic caused them to form a bubble for their tapings, something that no other pro wrestling company does to the extent of ROH. Jay Lethal explained how ROH was able to learn from others during this uncertain time.
While speaking to Busted Open Radio, Jay Lethal spoke about ROH’s decision to close down for a while during the pandemic. He said that after their 18th Anniversary pay-per-view was cancelled there was some sorry, but they ended up getting to sit at home and collect money.
Although getting paid to sit at home is great, Jay Lethal said that they still wanted to wrestle. They considered options and were finally able to get something done after watching how so many other companies decided to do things during the pandemic.
“When they shut that pay-per-view down [18th Anniversary Show] and we all got home, we had emails saying we’re going to have a Zoom call. Of course I feared the worst, but essentially, in that Zoom call, our boss Joe Koff was saying, ‘There are other companies still running and nothing against them, nothing against the empty arena matches, but I just don’t want to be putting my wrestlers at motels and on airplanes right now. So, you guys just sit home. Sit tight. No one’s getting their checks canceled. You’re all going to get paid, but just stay home and be safe and wait for the call to see how we’re going to proceed after that,'”
“I mean, you can’t ask for a better– you can just sit home and collect money. That’s outrageous and such a blessing, but also a lot of us were kind of saddened because we wanted to get paid. We were getting paid, but we still wanted to wrestle.”
“Although the empty arena matches weren’t looked upon as the best, we were still getting to wrestle. And we all kind of voiced our opinion to Joe and he felt like, ‘Well, maybe if you guys all want to do this, I could look into it.’ Then there were so many calls to see if the athletic commission would approve it. But yeah, they got to sit back and also watch and see what other people were doing wrong so that we could do it the right way.”
ROH reintroduced the Pure Championship to the mix and now they are producing a new kind of pro wrestling show. This wouldn’t have been possible if ROH didn’t take the time to do things right.
It should also be noted that ROH went above and beyond when paying their talent. Even those who were not under contract, but still scheduled for events, were paid for their cancelled bookings.
Thanks to Wrestling Inc for the quote