WWE announced the following:
The WWE roster returned to the United States on Saturday from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, after being delayed on their journey following the record-breaking WWE Crown Jewel event.
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 emanating 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 did not land until after the live broadcast on FOX.
“Man, (you) see and do a lot of wild things with WWE. This travel day is no exception,” SmackDown Superstar Kofi Kingston said Friday. “Tried our best to get to Buffalo tonight, unfortunately got out of our control but the show must go on!”
The remainder of WWE’s Superstars, staff and crew departed on a charter set to depart Saudi Arabia on Friday.
The situation gave way to a shocking edition of SmackDown, with NXT Superstars, such as NXT Champion Adam Cole, NXT Women’s Champion Shayna Baszler, Tommaso Ciampa, Keith Lee, Matt Riddle and others invading and making their presence felt as Triple H declared war.