Universal Championship match announced for Crown Jewel following Roman Reigns' relinquishment

Carla Harmon
October 23, 2018

On the October 22 episode of WWE's flagship series, Raw, Universal Champion Roman Reigns shocked the world by announcing he has leukemia, that he's vacating the title, and leaving to heal. I want to make one thing clear: by no means is this a retirement speech.

Joe "Roman Reigns" Anoa'i is no longer WWE Universal Champion.

The press release from WWE notes that Roman made his battle with leukemia public "in an effort to raise awareness and funds for research in order to advance cures for the disease".

It's unclear when Anoa'i received the diagnosis that his leukemia had returned.

Following Reigns' emotional announcement, he was embraced by his fellow WWE stars Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose, before he walked back-stage.

Reigns said he was initially diagnosed with the cancer of blood-forming tissues back after his successful college football career at Georgia Tech when he was 22-years-old. Signed by the Minnesota Vikings in 2007, then the Jacksonville Jaguars, but released by both teams before the start of the 2007 National Football League season. He had no money, no home, and a new baby.

"You wanna know who gave me a chance?" The team that gave me a chance was the WWE.

Reigns was scheduled to compete at WWE Crown Jewel on November 2 in Saudi Arabia where he would defend the Universal Championship against Braun Strowman and the returning Brock Lesnar in a Triple Threat Match.

"I will beat this", he said.

The Eskimos tweeted their support for their former player on Monday night after he announced he was stepping away from the ring.

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