It was reported earlier this month that WWE told their talent they were implementing a new mask policy, which requires face coverings at every taping. If wrestlers violate the policy, they will be fined $500 for the first offense and $1,000 for the next.
During a recent episode of the French podcast Les Anti Pods de la Lutte (via Post Wrestling), host Pat Laprade said that WWE started the new policy after Kevin Owens raised concerns with Vince McMahon during the July 3 taping. Owens told McMahon he wasn’t comfortable with the amount of people not wearing masks and people being too close to one another. After that, he said he was going to go home. McMahon asked what Owens wanted him to do and Owens said that McMahon was the only person WWE employees would listen to.
McMahon asked Owens if creating a policy with fines would work. Owens then reportedly said that he once swore on Smackdown, was fined and never did it again. Once he saw that people were wearing masks and respecting social distancing guidelines, he decided to stay.
As previously noted, Owens’ wife’s grandfather recently passed away as a result of COVID-19.