Just a kerfuffle?
Well, I’m not sure. On the first view, it has a sense of a ‘He said, he said’ argument. It might be something and nothing, just some GCW wrestlers having a chat with raised twitter voices.
Except it isn’t.
What Happened Then?
First of all, let me write that my wrestling buddy Fred, Five Starr Fan Cam himself, and the story I saw was written by 411mania.
The basic report is this. A Game Changer Wrestling wrestler said that he had faked covid tests to allow GCW shows to continue between October 2020 and January 2021.
Just an allegation, right? Only it’s apparently got to GCW owner Brett Lauderdale who, apparently following advice, is not commenting.
Here is what 411mania reported the wrestler, ‘Dirty’ Ron McDonald saying;
‘“F**k Brett Lauderdale. Brett ran tons of shows during covid bc he GOT US TO MAKE A TON OF FAKE FALSE NEGATIVE Covid-19 tests.’
he did then go on to make other comments about the owner getting rich on others’ efforts and stating; ‘Brett doesn’t get anyone a contract. Brett doesn’t give his wrestlers a raise’.
Isn’t This Just Discontent?
Because it’s covid. And because rules, were not followed, led to fines. And death. People died. I knew people who passed because of it and the ruling Tory party here in the UK is in trouble because they partied whilst others couldn’t see their loved ones or even say goodbye to them.
It’s irresponsibility. It isn’t just presenteeism. And that’s perhaps why, when the redoubtable Sean Ross Sapp reached out to Lauderdale for comment, he replied that he’d love to but he couldn’t.
It has real implications, dodging the covid rules for your company. Does it though? I couldn’t find anything on fines for companies in the US who breached code rules. In the UK, the New Statesman tells us;
‘The police have issued over 100,000 fixed penalty notices in England for breaching Covid regulations since lockdown measures were first introduced, according to the latest figures from the National Police Chief’s Council (NPPC).’
So it’s a moral danger then. Keeping wrestlers and fans safe. And that can affect your business, remember the owner of jewelry chain Ratners in a speech at an event telling the audience that the reason why they could the items cheap was that they were ‘crap’, as This Is Money reported. A refinancing followed.
Reputational trouble is not just brand brouhaha; it hurts.
GCW Wrestlers To The Rescue!
Tony Deppen and Joey Janela had different views about this GCW issue. And they didn’t mind telling us. Deppen commented,
‘Before every show, we had a group chat where we’d talk about her precautions and the deadlines for our covid tests,” wrote Deppen. “I also had to sit out two shows cause my tests didn’t come back in time – and that was at the request of Brett.’
according to PW Torch. He also wrote;
And there is some veracity to this, as GCW has had to announce a Deppen non-appearance because of covid protocols. Janela had been mentioned by McDonald too, who called him;
‘Who did Brett ever make famous?.” wrote Gordon. “Joey I’m a (expletive)’ Janela? Joey got famous for being tossed off a building and got a contract. Once AEW realized he had no talent, they benched and eventually didn’t resign him. Why? Because he’s a (expletive) unsafe (expletive) who can’t light a limb on fire.’PW Torch
So What’s The Kerfuffle?
Seems like a disgruntled wrestler who doesn’t seem to care if he works with GCW again. And maybe that’s the point – people have leapt on the covid protocol issue and that’s understandable because it’s such an important consideration.
But there were other claims made about payoffs and shows, something else which affects the house you built.
So this is just a spat that will blow over? It’s a lot more than that.