Sunday, April 20, 2014
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Reports: Philly snubbed by WrestleMania for not showing enough interest; City officials deny

WWE officially chose Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif. to host WrestleMania 31 in 2015 over Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia Tuesday.

Reports: Philly snubbed by WrestleMania for not showing enough interest; City officials deny

Lincoln Financial Field is seen before an NFL football game between the Philadelphia Eagles and the Arizona Cardinals, Sunday, Dec. 1, 2013, in Philadelphia. (Michael Perez/AP)
Lincoln Financial Field is seen before an NFL football game between the Philadelphia Eagles and the Arizona Cardinals, Sunday, Dec. 1, 2013, in Philadelphia. (Michael Perez/AP)

Update: Philly.com and other media outlets received a statement from WWE regarding a report from WrestleChat.com that reported the reason Philadelphia was passed over for WrestleMania 31 in 2015 was because of lack of interest from the city.

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.”

What this statement says is that Philadelphia was interested in hosting both WrestleMania 31 and 32, but was unable to make facilities available for events such as Fan Axxess. Fan Axxess is a major part of the week leading up to WrestleMania.

The statement is also in line with what Tommy Rowan of Metro Philadelphia reported previously reported.

Update 9:40 p.m.: Philadelphia officials called reports the city will not host WrestleMania due to a lack of interest 'completely bogus,' according to the Metro Philadelphia's Tommy Rowan.

Larry Needle, executive director of the Philadelphia Sports Congress, denied the city was even a finalist because no official bid was submitted to host the event.

More from Rowan's story:

"“We did not have availability at all of the venues that we needed to host the event,” Needle said. “As you can imagine you would have needed to be at Lincoln Financial Field, and have other events at the Wells Fargo Center and the Convention Center and we were not able to make all of the dates lineup.”

Needle said as much as the city “was interested in the event. … in this case we literally did not submit a bid.”"

From Earlier: WWE officially chose Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif. to host WrestleMania 31 in 2015 over Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia Tuesday.

According to a report from WrestleChat.com, WWE had its reasons for doing so.

Apparently the people who represent Lincoln Financial Field, home of your Philadelphia Eagles, gave WWE the impression that "the city was doing them a favor by allowing them to host their signature event in their town."

Santa Clara, on the other hand, showed “significantly more interest.”

The host committee for Santa Clara, which was headed by San Francisco 49ers CEO Jed York, did a better job in their pitch to the WWE. Santa Clara apparently presented WWE with a more enthusiastic and inviting pitch.

Philadelphia was a prime candidate for a couple of reasons. Firstly, it is one of the more historic wrestling cities in the country and was a staple for WWE during the territory days of wrestling.

Secondly, the success of East Rutherford, N.J. this past year showed WWE that it could hold an outdoor WrestleMania in the northeastern United States during early April.

But WWE did feel as though it was not right to place another WrestleMania in the tri-state area for the second time in three years, according to the report.

An inviting and welcoming pitch from the city of Philadelphia and Lincoln Financial Field could have possibly changed their minds. Apparently, that wasn’t the case.

Vaughn Johnson Sports Producer
About this blog
The Squared Circle is a one-stop shop of pro wrestling news, recaps and observations. You can also enjoy interviews with some of your favorite stars from the world of professional wrestling both nationally and locally. Reach Vaughn at vjohnson@philly.com.

Vaughn Johnson Sports Producer
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