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Unpopular Opinion: Why WWE Crown Jewel 2018 was underwhelming

Nathan Artis
520   //    05 Jan 2019, 16:04 IST

WWE Crown Jewel
WWE Crown Jewel

In 2018, the relationship WWE built with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia was controversial. WWE has always been about branching out, but going to Saudi Arabia where they don't allow women wrestle, alongside a couple of other controversial stances, opened WWE up to a lot of backlash.

Given they have signed a 10 year deal with Saudi Arabia to host events every year, and have already hosted two, with a possible third slated for a few weeks after WrestleMania 35, one does wonder how exactly their next show will play out, given the disaster of a show that was Crown Jewel, and an underwhelming Greatest Royal Rumble.

Questions could be raised when you look back at Crown Jewel, and just see how absurd some of the matches and booking decisions were. WWE probably deliberately make it a bad show because of the political backlash they were facing back in the United States, due to the death of the Saudi journalist, Jamal Khashoggi.

When you take a look back and see things like Shane McMahon inserting himself into the World Cup final, and having all American wrestlers in a tournament which is supposed to be a World Cup - not an all American Cup, as well as a horrible Universal title match having Baron Corbin basically hand Brock Lesnar the title.

The match between the Brothers of Destruction and D Generation X was absolutely underwhelming and hard to watch.

You could basically see it in Shawn Michaels face, it said - I'm too old for this, as he knew that he ruined his retirement, but WWE had no other choice but to bring him back, due to the Saudi Arabian Prince liking wrestlers from the past.

I'm not sure how even the Saudi Arabian Prince could sit through a match like that, as it was easily the worst match of their careers, and they were just there because of the money.

How will WWE ever get new talent over, and get them global recognition in the process, if Saudi Arabia in the contract wants WWE to bring over wrestlers long past their prime? They should just be happy the company is still honouring the commitment, despite the public backlash.

This is not an article to knock any of the four competitors in that match by any means, but it was really hard to watch 4 of the greatest WWE Superstars of the Attitude Era wrestling in such a poor encounter, and it didn't help that Triple H tore his pectoral muscle a few minutes in.


It just seemed WWE weren't really concerned about booking decisions at Crown Jewel, but credit to WWE for still going over there and honouring their commitment despite all the backlash. It took real guts.

Lets hope the next event in Saudi Arabia is much better, and that the quality of matches as well as booking decisions are great.

Do you think WWE cared about the event's outcome, given the criticism surrounding it? Have your say in the comments.

Thanks for reading this article.