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Saudi Arabia
courtesy Twitter
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WWE Reportedly Returning To Saudi Arabia By 2021 End

WWE hasn’t been able to visit the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for over a year due to the ongoing pandemic. As it looks to be slowing down a bit around the States and the Kingdom, plans are being put up for the next spectacle, aboard. WWE could be returning for a grand show to the middle east country by the end of this year, per the latest speculations.

It has been reported by @Wrestlevotes that two WWE sources indicate that an event in Saudi Arabia is expected before 2021 ends. This is something very much on the table while no additional details have been provided, for now,

“Two WWE sources indicate that an event in Saudi Arabia prior to the end of 2021 is very much on the table.”

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WWE Reportedly Returning To Saudi Arabia By 2021 End 1

WWE and the Saudi General Sports Authority announced in 2018 that they signed a contract for a 10-year strategic multiplatform partnership to support the Saudi Vision 2030 initiative, planned for the Kingdom’s social and economic reform program. As part of it, WWE was obliged to present a couple of shows, each year in Saudi Arabia, starting from that year.

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Now that deal had to be called off, temporarily as the COVID-19 pandemic forced delays in 2020 and the two pay-per-view events were canceled, last year. With vaccination being thoroughly implied around the USA and Kingdom being one of the less affected countries by the coronavirus, the two parties could be back in talks to bring back the global PPV events after the one-year hiatus.

There’s no confirmation on when exactly WWE might intend to return to Saudi Arabia, as of now but more updates should be out in the future. Before this, WWE visited Saudi Arabia for Greatest Royal Rumble and Crown Jewel in 2018, Super ShowDown and Crown Jewel in 2019, and Super ShowDown in 2020, the final show in the Kingdom before the pandemic.

WWE Reportedly Returning To Saudi Arabia By 2021 End 2

Saudi Arabia’s Super ShowDown 2020 PPV match card with outcomes

You can check out full results from Saudi Arabia Super ShowDown 2020 as given below,

– Kickoff Show: The O.C. (Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson) defeated The Viking Raiders (Erik and Ivar)

– Gauntlet Match For The Tuwaiq Trophy: The Undertaker defeated AJ Styles, Andrade, Bobby Lashley, Erick Rowan, and R-Truth to win the inaugural trophy.

– SmackDown Tag Team Championship Match: The Miz & John Morrison defeated The New Day (Big E and Kofi Kingston) (c) to win the Titles

– Angel Garza defeated Humberto Carrillo

– RAW Tag Team Championship Match: Seth Rollins and Murphy (c) defeated The Street Profits (Angelo Dawkins and Montez Ford) to retain the Titles

– Mansoor defeated Dolph Ziggler

– WWE Championship Match: Brock Lesnar (with Paul Heyman) (c) defeated Ricochet to retain the Title

– Steel Cage Match: Roman Reigns defeated King Corbin

– SmackDown Women’s Championship Match: Bayley (c) defeated Naomi to retain the Title
(Second-ever Women’s match in Saudi Arabia)

– Universal Championship Match: Goldberg defeated “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt (c) to win the Title

Booker T
image courtesy WWE
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WWE Veteran Booker T Wants A Match Against Triple H In Saudi Arabia

Booker T was last seen in WWE competition, almost nine years ago, although he’s said time and time again that he could be back if the company ever needs him. Now, it seems he’s gunning for a huge match against a WWE Hall of Famer that could also earn him a lot of money since it could be hosted in the middle-east country in a huge pay-per-view event.

WWE’s deal with Saudi Arabia has already produced a few dream matches whether people liked it or not. The high-dollar price tag for those events helps the company to make set-ups that are no less than WrestleMania events. Booker T seems more than ready to receive a huge paycheck by featuring in one of those shows in a big rematch.

WWE Veteran Booker T Wants A Match Against Triple H In Saudi Arabia 15

During Booker T’s Hall of Fame Podcast, the veteran discussed the idea of competing in another match against Triple H. He still feels that their big match WrestleMania 19 rubbed him the wrong way. He reminded the listeners of the podcast that there were some of the WWE officials who told that Booker should have won that match against Triple H.

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It seems that Booker T is certainly ready to take on The Game in Saudi Arabia if he receives a lucrative amount of money.

“If Booker T vs. Triple went down, it would have to be in Saudi [Arabia] because [WWE] are passing out big checks [to wrestle there],” Booker T said. “For me to get in the ring, the situation would have to be right. I would want to get paid. Somebody might say I’ve wrestled at my place, and yeah that’s my place and my job to teach my students and show them how it’s done sometimes. But yeah I would love to have another match, situations right, with Triple H.”

“The thing about that match [at WrestleMania 19], of course, the ending wasn’t what most of the majority of the fans that night were wanting. So many people wanted me to win that night, I remember a couple of the office guys said, ‘Book you should have won tonight.’ Well, you wrote it. You had a piece of it, why didn’t you speak up?” (Quotes courtesy Wrestling Inc)

WWE Veteran Booker T Wants A Match Against Triple H In Saudi Arabia 16

Booker T has a history with Triple H

Apart from the WrestleMania encounter, the King of Kings also featured in a big-time match with the former Harlem Heat member back at SummerSlam 2007. Triple H was coming back from an injury at that point while his opponent was in the middle of his King Booker shtick. WWE’s Cerebral Assassin had to be put over in a big way in that match, too.

We’ll have to see if WWE is listening to his words and eventually books this match in Saudi Arabia. Booker T is one of those old school names who could bring back the perfect nostalgia that the Saudi Arabian fans would love to see. Once the pandemic situation gets over, WWE is likely to revisit the country, two times in a year and the company could recreate the WrestleMania 19 encounter.

Riddle
courtesy WWE
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WWE Star Riddle Salary And Saudi Arabia Pay Revealed For 2021

One of the brightest WWE Superstars of the active roster is Matt Riddle who nowadays is being addressed as only Riddle. Quite a few veteran superstars mentioned him as a future main-eventer who has all the tools to be a world champion. But there’s a long way to go for him as he would have multiple years left in his WWE contract.

Initially, Riddle signed with WWE back in 2018, to begin his career in NXT. His highest accolade during that run was to win the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic tournament. He was then called up to SmackDown this past June who was then drafted to RAW during the 2020 Draft back in October.

WWE Star Riddle Salary And Saudi Arabia Pay Revealed For 2021 29

Dave Meltzer had reported in his report through Wrestling Observer Newsletter earlier in December that Riddle’s contract was set to expire in August 2021. But WWE would be pretty happy that the deal has been extended.

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Riddle Salary And Saudi Arabia Pay Revealed For 2021

WWE was previously negotiating a new contract with him which was fruitful. Riddle “pretty much agreed to terms for a three-year deal at $400,000 per year guaranteed plus $50,000 for every show in Saudi Arabia.” This is the base salary for him apart from which he will receive royalty-based paychecks for merchandise selling as well as some bonus amounts for PPV main event matches if any.

According to Fightful Select, Riddle wasn’t initially interested in the deal that WWE offered him, but he came to terms with the company in recent weeks. So he ended up signing that new deal which must be remaining intact for the next three years, at least.

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WWE Star Riddle Salary And Saudi Arabia Pay Revealed For 2021 30

WWFOldSchool.com provided a comparison to Riddle’s Saudi Arabia appearance pay to top stars. Brock Lesnar was getting paid $1.5 million per Saudi Arabia appearance through his last deal, while The Undertaker received $2 million. When Shawn Michaels came out of his retirement, then he got $3 million for his return to the ring at Crown Jewel 2018.

Fightful Select also added that “several new contracts” were offered to WWE Superstars in “mid-late 2020,” but they were viewed as “disappointing” compared to the high-dollar deals WWE was offering in 2019 and early 2020s. So many Superstars are thinking before signing those deals which are similar to the situation of Riddle.

Crown Jewel 2018
courtesy WWE
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WWE Crown Jewel 2018 Flashback: Huge Salary Revealed For Lesnar, HBK And Undertaker

Almost 2 Years ago, WWE hosted the inaugural WWE Crown Jewel pay-per-view event in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. This event was part of their huge deal with the sports authority of the country where they’re bound to host at least two PPVs, a year in the country. The significance of such events is that WWE and its superstars draw insane salaries to perform in such nights.

According to The Dirty Sheets, Saudi Arabia officials paid WWE $60 million for Crown Jewel 2018. WrestleMania shows don’t even come close to these numbers and you must not be wondering why the company is so much willing to go back to Saudi, as early as possible. However, this coronavirus pandemic has made things uncertain for any future events in the middle-east country.

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WWE Crown Jewel 2018 Flashback: Huge Salary Revealed For Lesnar, HBK And Undertaker 43

WWE Crown Jewel 2018 Flashback: Huge Salary Revealed For Lesnar, HBK And Undertaker

Coming back to Crown Jewel 2018, out of this $60 million, WWE spent $40 million to just put up the show which was no less than a grandeur. The rest of $20 million was for other expenses (which included pay for talent) and revenue generation. With so much money being spent, the top 3 draws for the show got paid incredible salaries for performing in just one show,

– Shawn Michaels: $3 Million

– Brock Lesnar: $3 Million

– The Undertaker: $2 Million

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Two time WWE Hall of Famer Shawn Michaels came out of retirement to compete in a tag team match at Crown Jewel 2018 edition. He teamed with Triple H to take on The Brothers of Destruction – The Undertaker and Kane in the main event match. Brock Lesnar defeated Braun Strowman on that night to win the vacant Universal Championship.

Roman Reigns was originally scheduled to defend the Universal Championship against Brock Lesnar and Braun Strowman in a Triple Threat at Crown Jewel but he went on a hiatus before the PPV due to leukemia diagnosis which led to a vacated belt.

WWE Crown Jewel 2018 Flashback: Huge Salary Revealed For Lesnar, HBK And Undertaker 44

D-Generation X vs The Brothers of Destruction was the billed main event of the show that appeared to be completely disastrous. Triple H ended up breaking his hand in the process while Kane lost his mask twice during the match as the competitors looked out of form. Speaking with Busted Open Radio, veteran Chris Jericho mentioned how Crown Jewel had to be the worst PPV show, ever to be produced by WWE,

“That’s exciting to me, but I never wanted to just…okay, well, the worst match I ever saw was Saudi Arabia, Triple H and Shawn Michaels vs. Kane and Undertaker. That was such a stupid idea in the booking. It never should have happened. It should have been Shawn & Hunter vs. Roman & Seth and Taker & Kane vs. I don’t know – give me two names of guys – Cesaro & Kevin Owens, whatever you want.”

Tyson Fury
courtesy WWE
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Does WWE Plan To Bring Back Tyson Fury On Their Programming In 2020?

Tyson Fury has recently made headlines in the pro wrestling world as he issued a challenge to WWE Champion Drew McIntyre to a wrestling match. He was apparently thinking a lot of who he’d like to punch in the face and it seemed that the Scottish Psychopath should be on top of his list.

This match is obviously getting nurtured for a long time since both Drew McIntyre and Tyson Fury belong to the United Kingdom. They do believe in main-eventing a pay-per-view in the UK, someday. So one of them thought of firing the first shot and it was accepted, quickly. So the question remains whether WWE is interested to book the fight.

Status Of 2020 WWE Crown Jewel Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

Does WWE Plan To Bring Back Tyson Fury On Their Programming In 2020?

Does WWE Plan To Bring Back Tyson Fury On Their Programming In 2020? 57

 

Tyson Fury hasn’t been seen in WWE for almost a year now but he does want to make a comeback and WWE also wants the same through a correct deal and match. It was noted in the Wrestling Observer Newsletter that Tyson Fury possesses the same position as that of Brock Lesnar in the WWE. Their names are huge and the company doesn’t want them to waste in any smaller show.

The money they could be warranted should be stocked for any high profile events. WrestleMania and Saudi Arabia pay-per-views are the biggest of them while also have huge question marks around these and so it seems that WWE won’t be signing either of them for a match, right now.

“Tyson Fury (who issued a challenge to Drew McIntyre this past week for a match), [is at the] point where Saudi Arabia and WrestleMania are the only shows that make sense right now and the belief right now is Saudi Arabia won’t happen this year.”

WWE isn’t likely to make it back to Saudi Arabia in 2020 and they’re likely to make something work out for 2021 and perhaps conduct an additional show. But another show in 2020 isn’t going down.

We should note that things got intense when Tyson Fury uploaded a video during a recent train ride. The undefeated boxer stated that he was thinking about who he wants to punch in the face. The King Of Claymore County came to his mind, right away and he threw the challenge.

Does WWE Plan To Bring Back Tyson Fury On Their Programming In 2020? 58

“So, grow a pair, step up to the plate, and come fight the master — me. So, this is an official challenge video to Drew McIntyre, the WWE Heavyweight Champion of the world. I already knocked your pal out, Braun Strowman. I’ll do the same to you. Bring it.” (Quotes courtesy wrestlingINC.com)

McIntyre later responded to the statement asking WWE head-honcho Triple H to pay attention to the pledge made by the Gypsy King. It would be interesting whether WWE pays attention to it or not.

WWE Crown Jewel
courtesy WWE
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Status Of 2020 WWE Crown Jewel Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

WWE’s deal with Saudi Arabia states that they have to visit the Kingdom twice a year (Super ShowDown and Crown Jewel) as part of the contract signed between the two parties. The company mostly organizes WrestleMania-alike bigger pay-per-view events in the country and they wanted to continue the norm despite the coronavirus pandemic going on.

In 2020, WWE has already visited Saudi Arabia, twice already as they have conducted the Super ShowDown pay-per-view in Riyadh in February. As per the deal, WWE had to return to the country for the 2020 Crown Jewel this fall (between October and November). The company was ready to move with the plan but it seems very unlikely to happen due to the Coronavirus pandemic.

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Status Of 2020 WWE Crown Jewel Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

Status Of 2020 WWE Crown Jewel Amid COVID-19 Pandemic 71

The Wrestling Observer reported that the backstage belief within WWE is that second Saudi Arabia show aka Crown Jewel 2020 won’t be happening, this year. It was noted that WWE won’t likely have Brock Lesnar or Tyson Fury there as both of them have been out of the context owing to the current situation.

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They don’t have The Undertaker anymore in reserve as he’s happy to announce retirement, earlier this year. WrestleMania 36 Boneyard Match against AJ Styles was supposed to be the last bout for him. Goldberg isn’t present on the scene either as he has wrestled in two matches in 2020 and thus finished his quota. Thus, WWE won’t be having enough star power of Crown Jewel would’ve happened.

During WWE’s Annual Shareholder’s Meeting Conference Call, Vince McMahon was asked by the investors if the company does have plans to conduct the Crown Jewel show in Saudi Arabia in 2020. He sounded pretty positive about doing that in late 2020 that wouldn’t hamper the deal.

Status Of 2020 WWE Crown Jewel Amid COVID-19 Pandemic 72

“Oh, that’s a possibility. Obviously, Saudi has been going through what we in America have been going through. As far as COVID’S concerned. Right now, I think they’re doing a little bit better than we are [in the U.S.], considerably better. So there’s a possibility that we’ll still get a show in before the end of the year, as was scheduled. But we’re not certain because, you know, who can be certain about what COVID-19 is going to do.” (Courtesy of Wrestlenomics)

Since Crown Jewel isn’t happening this year, Vince McMahon has plans to host one additional PPV event in the Saudi Kingdom to compensate for 2020 and thus pull in some more revenue.

WWE to visit Saudi Arabia in 2020?
courtesy Google
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WWE To Visit Saudi Arabia By The End Of 2020 Amid Controversy?

WWE has to visit the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia twice a year as part of the contract signed between the two parties. The company in general organizes WrestleMania-alike mega shows in the Saudi country and they might just want to continue to do so in the near future despite the coronavirus pandemic going on.

During WWE’s Annual Shareholder’s Meeting Conference Call, Vince McMahon was asked if they do have some plans to conduct another event in Saudi Arabia in 2020. He sounded pretty positive about doing one later this year that wouldn’t hamper the deal with the country’s sports authority.

WWE To Visit Saudi Arabia By The End Of 2020 Amid Controversy?

WWE To Visit Saudi Arabia By The End Of 2020 Amid Controversy? 85

McMahon noted that there’s a bright possibility available to visit Saudi Arabia as they are doing far better than the United States as far as the coronavirus situation is concerned. So they WWE could certainly host another extravaganza in KSA before the end of 2020, going by their original schedule.

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This is what Vince had to offer on revisiting Saudi Arabia in 2020,

“Oh, that’s a possibility. Obviously, Saudi has been going through what we in America have been going through. As far as COVID’S concerned. Right now, I think they’re doing a little bit better than we are [in the U.S.], considerably better. So there’s a possibility that we’ll still get a show in before the end of the year, as was scheduled. But we’re not certain because, you know, who can be certain about what COVID-19 is going to do.” (Courtesy of Wrestlenomics)

WWE To Visit Saudi Arabia By The End Of 2020 Amid Controversy? 86

It seems that a global pandemic isn’t enough to stop WWE from doing shows in Saudi Arabia even when the superstars might not be excited about it. The company’s deal with the country has always received a lot of criticism from fans and people in the media. Yet they hosted Crown Jewel in 2018 right after the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi that was a big issue around the United States.

Following the Crown Jewel 2019 event, many WWE Superstars were unable to leave Saudi Arabia in a situation that was internally dunned as “mechanical failures” in the charter plane.

However, the story later unfolded in the next few months, reporting a financial dispute between the two parties emerged. A number of shareholders also filed a class-action lawsuit against the company. But the issues were later sorted out and the deal remained intact.

courtesy WWE
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WWE Not Visiting Saudi Arabia In 2020 Amid Coronavirus Pandemic?

As admitted by WWE Chairman Vince McMahon, the company returning to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, later this year remains uncertain during the coronavirus pandemic.

Depending on what happens in the future via this deadly virus, the company would take the call on the next tour that should have happened in the fall of 2020.

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WWE Not Visiting Saudi Arabia In 2020 Amid Coronavirus Pandemic? 99

The Saudi Arabia sports authority is hoping to have WWE back in November in their country. If that’s not possible then a date in December is also possible.

It was let known during today’s WWE Quarter One 2020 earnings call presented by Vince McMahon and Interim Chief Financial Officer Frank Riddick.

The Boss also noted that he wasn’t sure if the Middle East County will be able to give them the green signal to perform in November/ December due to the coronavirus outbreak. The good part is that the Saudis really want WWE superstars to come back later this year for the second pay-per-view of the year.

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Another bright part informed during this week’s call earnings was that WWE may not be losing any significant profit from their Saudi Arabia deal,

“While WWE may have to nix their second 2020 event in the Kingdom, they will not lose the revenue from the Saudis that they are set to receive from it, according to Vince on the call. Vince said the “good part” about the second 2020 show potentially being canceled is that they are able to just “tack it onto” the backside of the 10-year contract, which means the event would essentially be just postponed.” (courtesy wrestlingINC.com)

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WWE made a ten-year deal with the Saudi General Sports Authority back in March 2018, via which they will be forced to conduct two yearly shows in the country.

They have held their fifth event and the first of this year back in February under the name of Super ShowDown 2020 event. Goldberg headlined the show by winning the Universal Championship from The Fiend Bray Wyatt in the main event.

An investor asked Vince McMahon and Riddick about the TV rights deal in the Saudi Kingdom. It was noted that the deal was moving slowly in that region.

WWE assumed the deal should have been finalized by now, but it was acknowledged that there is ‘some degree of uncertainty’ as to when they will be able to finalize the same.

courtesy WWE
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Saudi Arabia Offers WWE $75 Million To Host Wrestlemania In Riyadh?

WWE announced on Monday prior to this week’s WWE RAW that WrestleMania 36 will air on April 5 from the WWE Performance Center in Orlando, Florida with no audience. The show was withdrawn from Raymond James Stadium in Tampa Bay due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Related WrestleMania 36 Weekend events like NXT TakeOver: Tampa, Hall of Fame 2020, WrestleCon were also officially canceled.

Saudi Arabia Offers WWE $75 Million To Host Wrestlemania In Riyadh? 113

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The news of moving WrestleMania 36 to the PC appeared to be an abrupt decision by the company to assure people that WrestleMania won’t be canceled, altogether like the other major sports events.

They are considering more backup options in the meantime including a huge offer made by Saudi Arabia sports officials who have shown interests to host the showcase of immortals.

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As per the reports of wwfoldschool.com, Saudi Arabia officials have given WWE a $75 million offer for moving WrestleMania 36 in Riyadh on April 5th. This could be the additional pay-per-view event in the country speculated after WWE released an official statement to expand their partnership with the middle east country in the fall of 2019.

The biggest reason behind moving the show of shows to Saudi Arabia could cause a major profit that was originally estimated by WWE officials for the Tampa event.

Saudi Arabia Offers WWE $75 Million To Host Wrestlemania In Riyadh? 114

WWE expected a profit of $78 million from WrestleMania 36 in Tampa which means Saudi Arabia officials have pretty much covered this. But the company is not considering the offer at the moment as they’re still finding more backup options. Moving the show to Saudi could produce a huge media backlash for some obvious reasons.

However, if WWE does end up shifting WrestleMania to Saudi Arabia, then they won’t have to worry about any ‘extra cost and are guaranteed an upfront payment of $75 million (same amount of profit they could make in Tampa).’

These are all wild speculations at this point considering that Vince McMahon is extremely fond of money who can go to any extent to recover the profit expected from the biggest event of the year. Hosting an event like WrestleMania inside the Performance Center without an audience does not make sense in the first place and even the superstars also understand that.

Hence there are some insider talks going on to postpone the show around June when the company will return to Madison Square Garden in New York City. We have to wait to see whether more announcements arrive regarding the rescheduling of WrestleMania 36, again.

Crown Jewel
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Update On Next Saudi Arabia PPV To Be Hosted By The WWE

Despite what the feedback is, WWE officials are looking forward to heading back overseas, later this year in the middle east. They are currently planning their return to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. There’s no confirmed update on when the next event in the country would take place, but PWInsider.com hinted that they are looking to book a slot in late October or early November.

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An additional event was rumored as last year a statement was released regarding an additional show in Saudi Arabia while the extension of WWE and the country’s Sports Authority was confirmed. However, it looks like following Super ShowDown 2020, there would only be one more Saudi Arabia PPV and not the third one during the fall.

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As noted by wrestlingINC.com, the return date was once supposed to be during the summer of 2020. However, that slot was changed since temperature remains much higher in Saudi during that point,

“The return date of Thursday, August 20 was pitched at one point, believed to be for an event in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, but that idea was nixed because of how close it would be to SummerSlam Weekend and the likelihood that temperatures would be in the 100-120 degree range.”

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Super ShowDown 2019 in Saudi Arabia took place in June where the main event was affected due to extreme heat. Goldberg fainted while competing against The Undertaker as the match turned out to be a complete disaster. So WWE could be pushing for a later date for the obvious reason.

WWE hosted Super ShowDown 2020 event in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on Thursday, February 27. Before that, the Crown Jewel 2019 was held in late October. So the possibility is high that they’d go with Crown Jewel 2020 name for the next event during this upcoming fall. However, it’s yet to be confirmed.

Overall, the upcoming event in Saudi Arabia will be the sixth one under the 10-year-deal between WWE and the Saudi General Sports Authority. The trend of hosting such global shows in the Kingdom started with Greatest Royal Rumble, held in April 2018, in Jeddah.

WWE then returned in November 2018 for Crown Jewel in Riyadh followed by Super ShowDown 2019 in June of last year, in Jeddah. The Crown Jewel chronology continued in Riyadh last Halloween, and then again Super ShowDown 2020 was held in the last week of February in Riyadh.