Tone-deaf WWE recalls Hulk Hogan for show in Saudi Arabia

Lesnar made quick work of Braun Strowman, winning the WWE Universal Championship.

Hulk Hogan's brief return to WWE programing at the Crown Jewel pay-per-view in Saudi Arabia likely didn't improve or further damage his image, but the legendary wrestler continued to be an example of the company avoiding controversy it created. A night later, on Smackdown, Bryan lost his match to AJ Styles and his place was taken by Samoa Joe in the title match.

SmackDown Tag Team Championship: The Bar vs.

WWE instead has put Saudi Arabia on mute as backlash spreads against its lucrative long-term deal with a kingdom facing global uproar. WWE Crown Jewel will begin at 9.30 PM IST on Friday with the show expected to last anywhere from 3.5-4 hours, not including the kickoff show, which starts an hour prior to the main card.

Professional wrestling icon Hulk Hogan is in line to make a surprise return to World Wrestling Entertainment this week, more than three years after he was sacked by the company after an audio recording of Hogan making racist remarks was released by the National Enquirer. SmackDown Live is represented by Jeff Hardy vs The Miz and Rey Mysterio vs Randy Orton.

With the Crown Jewel event, WWE eventually made the decision to go ahead, transparently citing business reasons in their "very hard decision" to proceed with the show.

The company later confirmed to media outlets that Hogan would host Crown Jewel, but there was no mention of it on either WWE or Hogan's social media until he walked through the curtain Friday.

- Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Rusev for the United States championship (kickoff show).

Seth Rollins will face Bobby Lashley in the first round while Kurt Angle will be up against Dolph Ziggler in the other match from RAW.

The event will be live on Sony Ten 1, Sony Ten 1HD (both English) and Ten 3, Ten 3HD (both Hindi).

  • Jacqueline Ellis