John Oliver is no stranger when it comes to making comments towards the squared circle. Just last year, Oliver discussed his take on the WWE, and how it does and doesn’t take care of its workers during his show, Last Week Tonight..
This past Sunday, Oliver found himself talking about the WWE once more, as well as AEW and UFC, and how they’re arranging their scheduled programming during this pandemic. Though his thoughts on the matter were comical, Oliver was quite informative on the things that fans may or may not have thought about during these trying times.
“The state of Florida early on designated professional sports and media production with a national audience as an essential service, so long as it’s closed to the general public” Oliver reiterated. “So, WWE has continued staging shows in Florida – holding matches in front of empty chairs. That requires a lot more people than just those two wrestlers. You need production crews working together in close proximity.
“While WWE maintains it’s safety measures are as comprehensive as they can possibly be, one employee, wrote an anonymous letter to a Florida County Commissioner, asking them to shut the tapings down because, despite sanitary precautions, we cannot maintain social distancing, and have to touch other people. But, it’s easy to see why CEO Vince McMahon doesn’t mind them taking that risk. As he told investors on a recent earnings call, viewers want to see new matches.
After showing an audio clip call of what Vince McMahon had to say about the status of the WWE during the pandemic, and how he plans on not stopping his weekly televised shows, Oliver went back on his hilarious rant about what McMahon said.
“Ok, umm well first, I would argue that the risks of creating content the way that you are seem to outweigh the benefits right now,” Oliver noted. “Second, no one on that call registered your point there because you just said stimulating, strong men, underwear and crucially, driver, all in the same sentence, at which point, everyone’s minds turned immediately to getting absolutely bone crushed by Adam Driver. Chokeslam me to hell you nasty shed. Jam your mandible claw down my throat you irredeemable st-eer.”
Oliver briefly touched on AEW’s approach, but for UFC, however, he couldn’t help but roast Dana White’s original “Fight Island” idea.
“It’s not just the WWE. Their competitor AEW is also taping shows in Florida, and the UFC just last week started hosting matches in Jacksonville. While they couldn’t fly in [their] international fighters for that, their President Dana White has devised an insane workaround.”
“Yes, the UFC is apparently building a facility on a private island that they’re calling ‘Fight Island,'” Oliver announced. “Now, is that a clever name? No. Is it the perfect name? Yes! It’s the first thought an idiot would have if they wanted to name a private island where fights happen. Now, they could’ve called it ‘Brawlhamas,’ or ‘Puerto Raucous,’ or ‘Owie Maul,’ or ‘Slam Miguel,’ but he didn’t, he didn’t do that. He didn’t go for the obvious name for an island where you stage UFC fights, which is simply ‘UF-SEA.’ Look at me, Dana. Why didn’t you just call it ‘UF- SEA? It’s perfect!
On a serious note, Oliver ended his segment on the pro wrestling/MMA discussion by talking about the report that came out last week about UFC fighter, Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza, who tested positive of the virus, and how he had to be pulled out of UFC 249. While these times are trying and tough, Oliver admits that it’s hard for sports to continue on when their players get sick. However, he’s hopeful that the presidents of each sport will conduct their future plans, accordingly.
“At last weekend’s UFC event, a fighter had to pull out, after he and two of his cornermen tested positive,” Oliver stated. “Underscoring the fact that if you want to come back completely without risk, that’s just not possible right now.”
You can watch John Oliver’s full video above. If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO) with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.