Dolph Ziggler, who opened and closed last night’s episode of SmackDown LIVE, recently signed a new two-year contract with WWE for $1.5 million per year.
This is according to a report today by Justin Barrasso of Sports Illustrated, who adds that multiple sources close to people in WWE say that Ziggler was always planning on re-signing with the company after his last contract expired late last year.
With friction mounting between Daniel Bryan and Shane McMahon, the SmackDown LIVE Commissioner announced last week that the winner of Tuesday’s showdown between Ziggler and Baron Corbin would be added to the WWE Championship Match at WWE Fastlane featuring Kevin Owens, Sami Zayn, and WWE Champion AJ Styles.
After Owens and Zayn assaulted both competitors to prevent that match from getting started, McMahon established two singles matches to deal with the problem, pitting Corbin against Owens and Ziggler against Zayn. If either The Lone Wolf or The Showoff overcame their attackers, they would be added to the WWE Championship Match at the March 11 pay-per-view event. Corbin and Ziggler each emerged victorious, setting the stage for a Fatal 5-Way Match.
In a post-match interview with Renee Young on SmackDown LIVE Fallout, Ziggler said that he returned to WWE to main event WrestleMania, noting that main eventing the show was the one thing that has alluded him his entire career.
At last year’s show in Orlando, Florida, Ziggler competed in the 4th annual Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal, which took place during the WrestleMania 33 Kickoff. Ziggler eliminated R-Truth, Rhyno and NXT’s Tian Bing before being eliminated by the eventual winner, Mojo Rawley.