AmbulanceGate: NJPW Delayed Due to Potential Sabotage

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Photo: NJPW

Tonight’s NJPW Fighting Spirit Unleashed event in New York City at the Hammerstein Ballroom was delayed an hour and a half due to the scheduled medical staff not showing up to the event. The New York State Athletic Commission mandates that there has to be an ambulance at the venue for the event. Mike Johnson of PWInsider uncovered that the medical crew didn’t show up because the company had been called earlier in the day and told the event tonight had been canceled. Johnson wrote:

Based on numerous sources, here is the problem.  The ambulance company that the Hammerstein Ballroom uses for all their events (and used last night for a concert) did not show up as scheduled.  The belief originally was that the ambulance was stuck in traffic, but when the venue called the ambulance company to check up on their status, they were told that the ambulance company received a phone call this morning telling them tonight’s show was canceled and therefore they were not needed – and were now not available.  Someone involved in the show was able to scramble and get a FDNY ambulance to come to the show and FDNY offered to help and remain until the show could get another ambulance to take their place, so that New Japan could star holding matches.  However, we are told that New York State rules would not allow that and everyone is working on getting another ambulance there.  The Commission does not allow matches to take place unless there are EMTs with an ambulance present at the venue.    As you can imagine, everyone working the show is beyond stressed at the moment.

The Wrestling Community on-line immediately began to spread rumors and theories of sabotage – clearly, it was someone with knowledge of the company that the Ballroom hires regularly. Fingers were pointed, with names from Ring of Honor to WWE being thrown around as potential conspirators. One promotor, Gabe Sapolsky from EVOLVE Wrestling, called out the potential sabotage as “dirty tricks belong back in the carny indie days.”

While it could have just been miscommunication between both parties in the morning, the prospect of a rival promotion sabotaging another promotion’s live event is heartbreaking. Hopefully, it was a terrible prank by a lone individual because the “alternative to WWE” movement has been growing nicely around the world, from indies to bigger majors, and between the AEW blunder with its UK television deal this past week, CMLL firing longtime family Los Munoz (Rush, Dragon Lee & Bestia Del Ring), and now this with NJPW, it’s been a bit of an odd week.

Stay tuned to the Last Word on Pro Wrestling for more on this and other stories from around the world of wrestling, as they develop. You can always count on LWOPW to be on top of the major news in the wrestling world, as well as to provide you with analysis, previews, videos, interviews, and editorials on the wrestling world.  Catch all the NJPW action on NJPW World.

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