WWE has issued a new statement on the issues regarding the travel delays in Saudi Arabia.
As previously noted, the wrestlers were stuck in Saudi Arabia for over 24 hours after the Crown Jewel show. Although WWE’s claim is that mechanical issues were to blame, a lot of the wrestlers are not buying that story.
During the Crown Jewel pay-per-view, the word was circulating around the wrestlers that there was an issue between Vince McMahon and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman over money that was owed to WWE for their previous show in Saudi Arabia, WWE Super ShowDown. The live feed for Crown Jewel in Saudi Arabia did not air as scheduled and the show went on the air on a 40-minute delay. The story among the wrestlers is that McMahon initially cut off the feed for Saudi Arabia because of the money issues. The belief among the wrestlers was that the Saudi Crown Prince caused the travel delays as retaliation.
According to the latest WWE quarterly financial report, WWE was owed over $60 million dollars by the Saudi government and the money had not been received as of September 30th (the end of the quarter). WWE has yet to secure a new TV deal in the Middle East.
In a statement sent to Forbes, WWE says they have a good relationship with Saudi Arabia. Here is their statement:
“We have a good relationship with our partners, and the feed issues were unrelated to anything of that nature [payment dispute]. We’ve been public with mechanical issues, the charter company has as well”