WWE Comments on ROH/NJPW Holding Event at Madison Square Garden
Madison Square Garden in New York is considered WWE’s “home arena.” But since 2011, because of rising costs and other restrictions, the venue has not hosted any WWE pay-per-views or a televised Monday Night RAW or SmackDown, since 2011.
As for MSG, it will host a non-WWE wrestling event for the first time since the arena’s opening in 1968, as Ring of Honor and New Japan Pro Wrestling present “G1 Supercard,” at the venue on April 6, 2019. The event will air on pay-per-view. ROH and NJPW will actually be competing with WWE for fans, as NXT TakeOver will be held the same night, at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center, the night before WrestleMania 35 on April 7th at Metlife Stadium.
WWE issued a brief statement to Deadpsin, regarding the ROH/NJPW show at The Garden:
“Madison Square Garden is, of course, free to work with Ring of Honor however they want.”
ROH has competed with WWE before on WrestleMania weekend. On April 7th of this year, while WWE held NXT TakeOver: New Orleans at the Smoothie King Center, Ring of Honor and New Japan Pro Wrestling held Supercard of Honor XII, at the UNO Lakefront Arena on the campus of the University of New Orleans. The ROH/NJPW event drew 6,000 fans, which is a new attendance record for ROH.
Joe Koff, COO of Ring of Honor, spoke to the New York Post and said Madison Square Garden actually reached out to them:
“I think that’s a question better asked of Madison Square Garden because we were very aggressive in wanting that date and we thought we had that date, but we did what we had to do as a business. [MSG] did what they had to do as a business and I guess all of a sudden there was a phone call and we were able to work it out. … That’s probably their story to tell because they made the call [to us] and said let’s get on the phone and see if we can work this out. They wanted us. They knew that we would be good promotion. I think they were just looking for a satisfactory outcome for all parties.”
Madison Square Garden will be configured to hold 15,000 fans for the ROH/NJPW show. If attendance exceeds 10,000, it will beat the September 1st “All-In” event at Chicago’s Sears Centre, which has sold 10,000 tickets and is declared a sellout.
SOURCES: IWNerd.com, The Baltimore Sun, Deadspin