Add one more top WWE superstar to the short list that will not be making the trip over to Saudi Arabia for the Crown Jewel event this Friday. As was reported by multiple outlets over the last few days, Daniel Bryan is officially off the Crown Jewel card where he was scheduled to challenge AJ Styles for the WWE championship. This news comes on the heels of the confirmation on Raw Monday night that John Cena was removed from the World Cup tournament and will not be joining the crew as well. In recent weeks, there had been rumors floating that both former world champions were refusing to head to Saudi Arabia amid the growing political tensions, and it turns out that was indeed the case.
Bryan’s case is a little more interesting than Cena’s, though, as it appears the company attempted to keep his WWE title match with Styles as part of the event. One option, according to PW Insider, was filming the Bryan vs. Styles championship match down at the WWE Performance Center in Orlando and airing that bout Friday during Crown Jewel on the WWE Network.
Instead, Bryan and Styles squared off Tuesday night on SmackDown with Styles retaining the title via submission. Samoa Joe attacked both men immediately after the match, setting up a Styles vs. Joe match for the WWE title at Crown Jewel on Friday.
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More WWE news, rumors
- There was a photo floating around following the Evolution event on Sunday of Shayna Baszler on crutches, leading to speculation she may have seriously injured herself in her NXT women’s championship victory over Kairi Sane. Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter [subscription required and recommended] is reporting, though, that the injury is not considered serious and Baszler isn’t expected to miss any ring time.
- Evolution on Sunday didn’t have the look or feel of a Vince McMahon-led production, so some were assuming that NXT godfather Triple H was running the show. Well, that wasn’t the case at all. Pro Wrestling Sheet reports that it was McMahon who ran the historic all-women’s event from the gorilla position on Sunday inside the Nassau Coliseum.
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