Talent stuck in Saudi Arabia led to NXT invasion on Smackdown

On November 1st, we saw several NXT superstars such as Shanaya Baszler, Rhea Ripley, Adam Cole and Tommaso Ciampa invading the WWE SmackDown as several SmackDown superstars missed the episode, being stuck on an aircraft back from Saudi Arabia due to mechanical faults supposedly.

WWE SmackDown was slated to take place from Buffalo, N.Y. as usual. But as we came to learn from WWE News, a large part of the WWE roster was stuck in Saudi Arabia. This was when they were returning following the disappointing Crown Jewel PPV event which was broadcasted on Thursday afternoon.

There were rumors of flights being delayed due to mechanical issues with the plane. But as we learned from other sources, it was not the case. Actually, no one even knows the actual reason for the delay.  We don’t know if the official statement released to clear the speculations out was true at all.

More than 175 Superstars, production crew and employees boarded a 747 charter flight back to the United States on Thursday. After the door closed, due to several aircraft problems including mechanical issues, all passengers sat on the tarmac for more than six hours. With SmackDown set to emanate live from Buffalo, N.Y., several Superstars felt so strongly that they arranged for their own separate charter in order to make it back to the U.S. for the show. Due to unforeseen issues, that charter will not land until after the live broadcast on Fox.

The remainder of WWE’s Superstars, staff and crew will depart on a charter set to depart Saudi Arabia later tonight.

As always with WWE, the show must go on. Live at 8/7 CT on FOX, SmackDown will feature Superstars, such as Daniel Bryan, The Miz, Carmella, Nikki Cross, Dana Brooke — plus, additional surprises.


The invasion was nothing but an act setting up the stage for the Survivor Series, where the three primary brands of WWE – RAW, SmackDown and NXT will fight each other for supremacy. However, it served another major purpose, which was to make a show out of whatever SmackDown had left with it.


To save the night, NXT wrestlers were flown to Buffalo from Florida. We saw Tomasso Ciampa beat The Miz, Rhea Ripley and Tegan Nox picking up a win and Adam Cole beating Daniel Bryan to retain the NXT Championship. And all of it was planned and supervised by none other than Triple H.


At the end of the show, we saw NXT wrestlers celebrating. And Triple H took the opportunity to challenge RAW and SmackDown to a fight at Survivor Series.


Being true to the storyline, WWE SmackDown Superstars expressed their anger over this invasion publicly, vowing to avenge it. WWE Superstar Roman Reigns even took to Twitter to warn the wrestlers from the WWE’s Black and Gold development brand. Roman posted-


I respect y’all stepping up…but don’t get too comfortable in my yard. @WWENXT