WWE Comments On Why Philadelphia Didn’t Land Wrestlemania 31
One of the reasons San Francisco got the nod over Philadelphia to host Wrestlemania 31 was that WWE felt that officials in the Bay Area were going out of their way to truly be a partner for the event while Philadelphia officials didn’t step up.
As I noted, one WWE source referred to the situation as Philadelphia feeling like they would be doing WWE a favor by hosting the event, when Wrestlemania has evolved to the point that cities are vying to host it.
The story that made the round over the weekend internally within WWE was that once the company conveyed to Philadelphia officials all the details regarding the different venues, infrastructure and locations they would require to host Wrestlemania, Raw, Hall of Fame, AXXESS, etc., city officials were not very responsive to making sure all of the venues would be open and available.
It was described to me that the city sort of took a sort of defeatist attitude that it couldn’t work out. It was a situation where Philadelphia took a “whatever happens, happens” approach as if Wrestlemania wouldn’t be a coup and that turned off WWE, who at this point, are used to markets bending over backwards to cooperate with them, wanting the obvious tourism business that comes with Wrestlemania.
As it turns out, Philadelphia didn’t even bother to finalize and submit a formal offer for the event.
Philadelphia ABC affiliate WPVI channel 6 reached out to WWE about the city of Brotherly Love not getting Wrestlemania and received the following statement from the company:
“While Philadelphia expressed a great interest in hosting WrestleMania in 2015 and 2016, the fact is the city did not submit a formal proposal because the facilities necessary to host ancillary events weren’t available. Philadelphia remains a strong market for WWE in all aspects of our business.”
In the report, representatives for the city tried to deflect not bidding on the event towards online reports claiming they were a finalist, pretty much blaming false reports. However, when those reports first circulated, the city made a vague statement that led one to believe they were indeed in the running. They also played up the idea that they were still interested in hosting Wrestlemania down the line.
Philadelphia hosted Wrestlemania 15, headlined by Steve Austin vs. The Rock, although obviously, the event has evolved greatly since that time.