Report: Kevin Owens Doesn’t Want To Go To Saudi Arabia For WWE Super ShowDown
Owens Not Headed To Saudi Arabia
Kevin Owens won’t be making the trip for WWE Super ShowDown.
According to Fightful Select, Kevin Owens has informed WWE he doesn’t want to compete at the event on June 7 in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
Owen’s absence from the event caused WWE to book Dolph Ziggler vs. Kofi Kingston for the show for the WWE Championship.
Sami Zayn was held out of The Greatest Royal Rumble last year due to “respect of local Saudi culture”.
Zayn, who is of Syrian decent was reportedly not booked for the event due to his Syrian roots.
WWE released a statement on Zayn’s absence, saying, “WWE is committed to embracing individuals from all backgrounds while respecting local customs and cultural differences around the world.”
Syria has had tension with Saudi Arabia since the start of the Syrian Civil War in 2012.
WWE has also faced criticism over women not being able to compete at the events last year. WWE did have Renee Young provide commentary at Crown Jewel, but no female stars have performed at either Saudi shows.
In a statement to The Independent, Triple H said, “While, right now, women are not competing in the event, we have had discussions about that and we believe and hope that, in the next few years, they will be. That is a significant cultural shift in Saudi Arabia.”
Last year, John Cena and Daniel Bryan both stated they didn’t want to compete in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and were not booked on the Crown Jewel event.
WWE faced harsh criticism for moving forward with the Crown Jewel event last November following the controversy surrounding the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
WWE released the following statement last fall on their decision to continue their relations with the Kingdom.
“WWE has operated in the Middle East for nearly 20 years and has developed a sizable and dedicated fan base. Considering the heinous crime committed at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, the Company faced a very difficult decision as it relates to its event scheduled for November 2 in Riyadh. Similar to other U.S.-based companies who plan to continue operations in Saudi Arabia, the Company has decided to uphold its contractual obligations to the General Sports Authority and stage the event. Full year 2018 guidance is predicated on the staging of the Riyadh event as scheduled.”