Dave Meltzer spoke about the Saudi Arabia lawsuit with WWE on the Wrestling Observer Radio yesterday, commenting on WWE opting to settle a lawsuit with shareholders, who alleged the company made false and misleading statements regarding the company’s relationship with Saudi Arabia. WWE’s disclosure on the settlement released yesterday stated that it will not contain any admission of liability or acknowledgement of validity regarding the allegations.
The lawsuit was settled before the discovery phase, and the plaintiff’s legal team did have witnesses. He added that nothing would’ve come out during discovery that wasn’t already known or reported beforehand. He said, “It was all going to come out.” The settlement of $39 million, which is being paid by WWE’s insurance carriers, is also more than double the $18 million settlement paid to the family of Owen Hart in November 2000.
Additionally, while the insurance carriers will pay the settlement amount, the company’s insurance premiums will be increased “through the roof” because of the settlement. Also, Vince McMahon is only willing to settle a lawsuit as a “last resort.” This is also largest settlement amount for WWE in the company’s history.
As the story goes, there was a dispute between McMahon and the Saudi Crown Prince. This led to the rumor of Vince McMahon apparently cutting the live TV feed for Crown Jewel 2019. As a result, WWE talent who were still in Saudi Arabia following Crown Jewel 2019 on October 31 were not allowed to leave and authorities allegedly forced them off of their flight. WWE’s official reason for talent being delayed from leaving was “mechanical failure.” Obviously, that doesn’t appear to be the case and is why the company settled.