Daniel Bryan is once again not going to Saudi Arabia for the WWE Super ShowDown event on Friday, June 7th in Jeddah. Dave Meltzer noted on Wrestling Observer Radio that Bryan has once again declined going to the show.
Bryan had wrestled at WWE’s first big show in Saudi Arabia, The Greatest Royal Rumble, last April. He had turned down working last November’s Crown Jewel event in Riyadh. It was reported in The Wrestling Observer at the time that Bryan turned it down because he had learnt about Saudi Arabia’s treatment of homosexuals, as well as about Sami Zayn not being allowed in the country. Zayn was not allowed to work The Greatest Royal Rumble event because of his Syrian ancestry, which Bryan felt was racist. Saudi Arabia cut ties with Syria in 2012, and Zayn had started a #SamiForSyria mobile clinic in Syria in 2017.
At the time, WWE issued the following statement regarding Zayn’s absence from the event:
“WWE is committed to embracing individuals from all backgrounds while respecting local customs and cultural differences around the world.”
Kevin Owens is also skipping Super ShowDown in two weeks, which was first reported by Fightful. WWE Champion Kofi Kingston will now be facing Dolph Ziggler at the show. Meltzer noted on Wrestling Observer Radio that Ziggler being booked for the match was a last minute decision, as Ziggler was booked to be in Australia that weekend for the Oz Comic-Con. It was announced right before SmackDown went on the air that Ziggler would not be appearing at the Comic-Con, as seen below. His replacement has yet to be announced.
It is not known why Owens is skipping the Saudi Arabia event, although he is best friends with Zayn. Owens was at the Greatest Royal Rumble event last April, however was injured when Crown Jewel took place last November.
The only other star that refused to work Crown Jewel was John Cena, who is not scheduled for WWE Super ShowDown.
WWE Super ShowDown takes place on Friday, June 7th, at the King Abdullah Sports City’s King Abdullah International Stadium in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
Source: Wrestling Inc.