Report Offers More Details On Deal Between WWE & Indiana Sports Corporation

WWE recently announced their new partnership with the Indiana Sports Corporation that will see the company bring its three biggest events, Royal Rumble, WrestleMania, and SummerSlam, to the Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis over the next few years. The partnership will begin in 2025 when the Royal Rumble takes place on February 1, with the dates of WrestleMania and SummerSlam yet to be announced. However, it has been confirmed that both WrestleMania and SummerSlam will take place over two days, and in the latest Wrestling Observer Newsletter, Dave Meltzer broke down some of the finer details about the deal.


Indiana won't just see shows like WrestleMania, SummerSlam, and the Royal Rumble, as the deal will run from 2025 to 2032, meaning that "WWE Raw," "WWE SmackDown," and "WWE NXT" will also host events throughout the state, with many more house shows being included in the deal. Places like Fort Wayne and Evansville will see TV tapings and live events, as will the Gainsbridge Fieldhouse, which is set to host multiple major shows. However, it should be noted that the September 30 "WWE Raw" set to take place in Evansville isn't part of the deal, as that date was announced prior to the partnership becoming public.

While no official dates have been confirmed for WrestleMania or SummerSlam due to both sides needing to figure out which weekends work best for hotel availability, Meltzer noted that the idea of bringing WrestleMania to Indianapolis in particular has been in the works for sometime. Talks reportedly go back to fall 2023, where Pat McAfee, the long-time punter for the Indianapolis Colts, stated at the 2023 Fastlane Premium Live Event that the city deserved a WrestleMania. Meltzer claims this was a pre-approved line by management, as talks had already begun about bringing WWE's biggest event to the city, but the rest of the deal had yet to be fleshed out.


Money Will Be A Key Factor for WWE and Indiana

Meltzer also detailed how finances are a driving force behind the partnership. For instance, he believes that the set-up in Lucas Oil Stadium will see around 62,500 fans in attendance, a figure that Meltzer believes will likely be inflated to around 75,000 when the attendance is announced on show day. This means that for WrestleMania, WWE and the Indiana Sports Corporation will be looking for around 120,000-150,000 tourists to flock to Indianapolis. 


Meltzer believes that number will be tough to reach, as fans will purchase tickets for multiple events (including shows not related to WWE), but given that the cost of hosting a WrestleMania will set the city back around $20 Million all things included, both parties will be hoping for the maximum number of wrestling and non-wrestling tourists. The idea many reportedly hold is that the three stadium shows will generate approximately $350 Million, an extremely substantial amount that was generated by the fact that WrestleMania 39 in Los Angeles generated around $215 Million in economic impact for the city.

The President of the Indiana Sports Corporation, Patrick Tatly, has public expressed his excitement regarding the partnership, while also stating that there are still ongoing discussions about which divisions of governmental agencies will cover the costs of bringing WWE to Indiana. $5 Million dollars has already been pumped into the tourism fund to bring more major sports events to Indianapolis in particular, but it is unclear if this money covers the site fees agreed upon, which Meltzer claims are the largest for any WrestleMania or Royal Rumble in history.