WWE is reportedly looking into alternatives for a show on November 2, 2018, should it be forced to cancel Crown Jewel in Saudi Arabia.
Earlier this year, it was revealed that WWE had signed a ten year deal with the Saudi Sports Authority. The deal involves those in power in Saudi Arabia paying Vince McMahon and WWE a lot of money for the promotion to stage two shows a year in the country. As soon as the deal was announced, it naturally came with a fair bit of controversy.
The first show, Greatest Royal Rumble which took place in April of this year, felt wrong in the eyes of many fans as women were not allowed to compete on the show. That alone has warranted many to urge WWE to cut ties with Saudi Arabia, regardless of the money involved. Nevertheless, WWE plans on returning to Saudi Arabia on November 2, 2018, for Crown Jewel.
However, an even bigger spanner than women not being allowed to perform on the show may have been thrown in the works. A Washington Post journalist named Jamal Khashoggi went missing in Saudi Arabia, and there is speculation that he has been captured and even killed. In light of that speculation, many US senators have urged WWE to cancel Crown Jewel and not travel to Saudi Arabia.
For WWE, it isn't as straightforward as that. Many wheels are already in motion and there has to be a big WWE show at the start of November no matter what. Many big matches are already booked. According to The Wrestling Observer, WWE and Mr. McMahon are already in the process of figuring out a backup plan should the Saudi show fall through. If that does happen, it won't be as simple as staging Crown Jewel in the US.
That's because there is a lot of money on the line. Big stars such as Brock Lesnar, The Undertaker, and even Shawn Michaels are booked for the show because of how much they are being paid to appear. WWE can afford to pay them that much because of the money the Saudi Sports Authority is paying them to put on the show. If the show doesn't happen, then that money won't come.