The Saudi General Sports Authority, in partnership with WWE, will present WWE Crown Jewel at the King Fahd International Stadium in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on Friday, November 2 and it’s been rumored that Hulk Hogan could make his return at the event after being reinstated into the WWE Hall of Fame last July.
Speculation on Hogan appearing at WWE Crown Jewel escalated last week after General Sports Authority of Saudi Arabia Chairman, His Excellency Turki Al Sheikh, tweeted a classic photo of “The Hulkster.”
وش كأس العالم اللي ما أحد يحكي عنه ذا؟ pic.twitter.com/xnlEho2OFI
— تركي آل الشيخ (@Turki_alalshikh) September 24, 2018
WrestleTalk.com claims through a source in Saudi Arabia that the tweet was not a hint at Hogan appearing at WWE Crown Jewel. He says that based on Al Sheikh’s prior tweets, it was “just a meme.”
The source added, “Nobody is talking about [WWE Crown Jewel] in this country, so there’s no reason to tease Hogan.”
The tweet is roughly translated as “What is the World Cup that nobody is talking about?”
The source says there’s actually a good reason for the unusual wording of the tweet.
“It is widely believed within Saudi Arabia that the whole reason behind WWE doing a World Cup is to mock Qatar and the 2022 football World Cup,” the source said.
Relations between the two nations are strained and the source says this is something that Saudi Arabia would do to “get one over” on Qatar.
Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt, and the United Arab Emirates all severed ties with Qatar in 2017 for what they described as Qatar’s “embrace of various terrorist and sectarian groups aimed at destabilizing the region.”
The source went on to say that although he can not rule out a Hogan appearance since “this is Vince McMahon, who would do anything crazy if the right price was on the table,” the likelihood of Hogan’s involvement at the event based on the evidence of the tweet alone is severely reduced for the reasons noted.
After reinstating Hogan into the WWE Hall of Fame, WWE brought him backstage at Extreme Rules on July 15 to apologize to talent about his racist comments from over a decade ago that came to light in 2015 through a story in the National Enquirer. Some forgave him while others, notably Titus O’Neil and The New Day, felt that Hogan was not genuine with his apology. To them, it came off as if Hogan was sorry about getting caught than being sorry about what he said.