2020 WWE WrestleMania 36: Roman Reigns out of match vs. Goldberg due to health concerns, per reports

Roman Reigns was set to compete in one of the main event matches at WrestleMania 36, taking on Goldberg for the WWE universal championship. The event — already moved from Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida, to the WWE Performance Center in Orlando with no crowd in attendance due to the global coronavirus pandemic — was pre-taped in recent days. But Reigns’ past battles with leukemia have left him immunocompromised, and the superstar made the decision to remove himself from the event.

The news was first reported by Pro Wrestling Sheet and confirmed by ESPN. WWE declined comment to CBS Sports and other outlets, potentially as to not reveal spoilers from its taped programing. Angles for WrestleMania 36 may be adjusted as soon as Friday night’s edition of “SmackDown” on Fox.

Reigns had initially been diagnosed with leukemia at age 22, and the disease unfortunately returned recently, forcing him to step away from wrestling in 2018 before an early 2019 comeback to the ring. WWE had seemingly booked a slow but steady resurgence for Reigns to achieve another “WrestleMania moment” where he was expected to win the title from Goldberg on the biggest show of the year.

WWE chief brand ambassador Stephanie McMahon has previously spoken about the company’s screening practices while holding events, including recent editions of Raw and SmackDown from the Performance Center.

“At a typical event, talent are milling about, they’re at catering or wherever when they’re not actually in part of the show,” McMahon told Variety. “That’s not allowed now. There’s extensive testing and screening when you first come in the facility regardless of whether you’re a talent, a crew member, or anyone else. Working with our doctors, you have your temperature taken. If you have a temperature over 100.4 degrees, you are automatically asked to leave. If you’ve been out of the country or been in touch or in contact with anybody who’s been out of the country, you’re not allowed in the facility.”

WrestleMania 36 will air on WWE Network on April 4 and 5 as a two-day event hosted by former NFL star Rob Gronkowski. It will begin at 7 p.m. ET each evening.

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