Hulk Hogan returns to WWE at controversial show in Saudi Arabia

WWE is looking to an icon as it stages perhaps the most controversial event in pro wrestling history. More
WWE is looking to an icon as it stages perhaps the most controversial event in pro wrestling history. More

03 November, 2018

As the Raw tag team championship finds itself in a limbo, all eyes will be on the SmackDown Tag Team titles as two of the best tag teams in the WWE will do battle to win the championship now held by The Bar.

Billed as the host of Crown Jewel, Hogan began the show by walking to the ring as a huge fireworks extravaganza took place at the stadium in Jeddah.

The toxic environment around "Crown Jewel" prompted WWE superstar John Cena to back out of the event, while Daniel Bryan was written out of the show as well after reportedly not wanting to be associated with it.

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With the Crown Jewel event, WWE eventually made the decision to go ahead, transparently citing business reasons in their "very hard decision" to proceed with the show.

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It remains to be seen if Hogan's return was a one-off, but his impressive popularity in Saudi Arabia will no doubt convince WWE to continue to use him on camera in the future.

News of Hogan being part of the show started with him mentioning it in an interview with the Orlando Sentinel last week.

The Bar has only recently won the championships and is one of the best tag teams in the WWE today, and therefore there is a great chance of them retaining the titles with Survivor Series on the horizon.

Cena, who originally didn't need or have a qualifying match for the World Cup tournament, was simply replaced by Bobby Lashley with no explanation given or needed. Despite pressure from politicians and considerable backlash from fans in the wake of journalist Jamal Khashoggi's murder inside a Saudi Arabian consulate in Turkey, WWE has made a decision to push forward with the event - which will be the second pay-per-view staged in Saudi Arabia this year. Hogan spoke with the WWE locker room in July before an event and his comments were not widely appreciated.

On a conference call with shareholders WWE chairman Vince McMahon said: "We're not going to talk a lot about that [Crown Jewel]".

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