Daniel Bryan caused a stir by opting not to work in Saudi Arabia which caused the management to make some last minute changes. The WWE Championship match planned for the event was preponed and took place at SmackDown. AJ Styles retained the title after Bryan tapped out to the Calf Crusher.
Bryan Alvarez noted on Wrestling Observer Live that the finish of the match was not altered from what was initially planned at Crown Jewel. Moreover, it suggests that this was basically a one-off match with Styles possibly moving forward with a new opponent. Alvarez claimed:
“I am told that the finish from Smackdown last night was the Crown Jewel finish. Looks like no big plans for Daniel Bryan throughout the rest of the year.”
This also sheds a light on Bryan’s status in the eyes of the management. Despite trying out desperate measures to keep Bryan in the company, the WWE apparently don’t see the former champion as a top-tier star.
There is also a possibility that the management has not taken Bryan’s decision to work Crown Jewel well and may cause him to slide down the card.