WWE Intercontinental Championship Vacated
We learned on yesterday’s (May 12th) episode of WWE Backstage that the WWE Intercontinental Championship vacated. Sami Zayn is no longer Intercontinental Champion. There will be a tournament on SmackDown to crown a new champion.
Zayn responded in a tweet saying that he disagreed with the decision. “Despite what anyone says, I’m still undefeated and therefore still the Intercontinental Champion.”
I disagree with this decision and no matter what anyone says, I am still undefeated and therefore still the Intercontinental Champion. -SZ https://t.co/SUFsBFeRDB
— Sami Zayn (@SamiZayn) May 13, 2020
WWE declared the Intercontinental Championship vacant after Zayn made it clear he would not be performing due to concerns about the global pandemic. Sami has been absent from WWE television for some time. His last appearance being the April 3rd edition of SmackDown. This appearance was to hype his Wrestlemania 36 match against Daniel Bryan.
WWE has stated that employees did not have to work during the pandemic if they didn’t want to. WWE also mentioned that the decision not to work would not be held against them in the future. This statement is contradictory to recent actions taken by the company against superstars refusing to work during the global pandemic.
Roman Reigns is another superstar who has decided to stay home over COVID concerns. Reigns hasn’t been mentioned on WWE TV since his decision. More interestingly, WWE edited him out of a recap of the Wrestlemania 31 main event. Many have speculated that this is a form of punishment for his decision to sit out during the global pandemic. While one could say the same for Sami, it could also be argued that he was stripped for being unable to defend his championship within 30 days. It seems, as always, that the only active wrestler to go unpunished will be Brock Lesnar.
As of the time of writing, no brackets have been announced for the tournament.
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