John Cena will not take part in the WWE’s Crown Jewel event on Friday in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
After being advertised as being part of the show in recent weeks, Cena was quietly removed from the match as part of Monday night’s broadcast of WWE’s flagship show, Monday Night Raw. He will be replaced in the event by Bobby Lashley, who joins Kurt Angle, Jeff Hardy, Randy Orton, Seth Rollins, Dolph Ziggler, The Miz and Rey Mysterio in the tournament portion of the show.
The WWE is moving forward with Crown Jewel despite the ongoing investigation into the death of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi on Oct. 2 at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.
In a statement, WWE said, “As always, we maintain an open line of communication with our performers and will address each situation accordingly.”
Cena, who in recent years has made a push into the world of mainstream Hollywood in movies and television, has yet to release a public statement about no longer taking part in the Crown Jewel show.
As part of their Q3 financial report last week, WWE confirmed they were moving forward with their Crown Jewel event.