Why Did Sabo Kill Cobra? (& Will He Return)

one piece sabo kills cobra

The One Piece saga has seen a ton of interesting plot twists and unexpected events, and the death of Cobra had fans scratching their heads. Cobra’s death leaves way too many open-ended questions, especially considering the minor details. One of those questions is why did Sabo kill Cobra?

Sabo allegedly assassinated Cobra, but more theories point to the World Government or another powerful entity being the culprit and using Sabo as a scapegoat. Cobra was asking too many questions and the Nefertari family was seen as traitors, giving entities like the WG and Gorosei facet motive.

Although it may seem like Sabo may have been the bad guy for killing Cobra, Sabo may still be a hero for many reasons. Join us as we discuss what could have happened between Sabo and Cobra, including who else could have been responsible, possible motives, and whether or not Cobra is expected to make a reappearance later down the line.

Did Sabo Kill Cobra In One Piece? (Debate)

Originally, it was not actually clear who had killed Cobra since he was assassinated – many thought it could have been at the hands of other characters. It was hard for one to see Sabo killing Cobra, especially if he had interacted with Vivi at the Reverie.


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It’s more believed that Sabo was framed for the murder of Cobra, and that he is actually innocent. Although, many other fans believe that Sabo killing Cobra would have caused massive conflict – which could set us up for a whirlwind of plot twists. According to One Piece Fandom:

“Nefertari Cobra was the 12th king of the Arabasta Kingdom, the former patriarch of the Nefertari Family, husband of the late Nefertari Titi, and father of Nefertari Vivi. During the latest Levely, Cobra was allegedly assassinated by the Revolutionary Army chief of staff, Sabo.”

Chapter 1054 kicked off with the World Government ‘revealing’ that Sabo had killed Cobra. This was seen as a fact for many Marines in One Piece – although, some Admirals in One Piece do not know who killed Cobra either.

cobra soba

Fans were initially shocked at the idea of Sabo killing Cobra, and many felt as if it was something they would have never expected from Sabo. It is still an unpopular take on Cobra being killed – there are quite a few other theories that can help break down what really happened.

Theory 1: Sabo was Framed

Most of the One Piece community still believes that Sabo was framed for the event, and the more likely culprits could be assassins, Gorosei, CP0, the World Government (WG), the Celestial Dragons, or possibly even someone else. This may also work since Sabo may have been captured at the time, and the true killer may have seen him as an easy scapegoat.

Theory 2: Sabo Helped Cobra Fake His Death

Another theory is that Sabo was actually in on it, and knows more than he’s letting on. This theory would revolve around Sabobeing involved in Cobra faking his death in order to escape to safety – after which he took the blame for Cobra’s murder.

Theory 3: Cobra Died Defending Vivi

The third theory is that Cobra and Vivi were put in danger, or that Vivi was supposed to be assassinated for some reason. This theory revolves around Cobra trying to defend her so that she could escape, although he was killed in the process, and Sabo was blamed for his ‘murder’ based on circumstantial evidence.

How Was Cobra Killed In One Piece?

The only information that fans have gotten is derived from the World Government’s statement – that Cobra was assassinated by Sabo. The word ‘assassinated’ is pretty vague, and we may never know the specifics of how he was killed.

Why Was Cobra Killed In One Piece?

There is plenty of mystery as to the entire situation surrounding Cobra’s death. Was he even killed? If he was killed, who really killed him? The reason for why he was killed would rely a lot on the previous questions.

Theory 1: The WG Killed Cobra for Political Reasons

But, assuming that he was killed by someone (Sabo or not), it would most likely revolve around his actions at the time. Cobra was starting to ask a lot of questions that could stir up trouble for powerful organizations, and this is definitely seen as a solid motive for taking him out of the picture.


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If this is the case, then the most likely suspect would be the World Government or an associate. But, it could be assumed that they were pulling the strings, especially considering how eager they were to announce Sabo as the killer. This is especially since Cobra’s death was a massive deal considering that the Nefertari family was one of the original families that formed the WG in the first place.

Theory 2: The Gorosei Killed Cobra Because He Was a Nefertari

Concerning the possibility of the Gorosei facet being behind his death, it may have more to do with his bloodline than his questions. The Gorosei facet thought of the Nefertari family as traitors, who may have deserved to be exterminated.

They also requested Im’s blessing to do a “great/ massive cleansing”. This may also point to a motive for killing Cobra – and possibly Vivi as well which would link back to some of the fan theories.

Theory 3: Sabo Killed Cobra for Power and Influence

If Sabo did really kill Cobra, it would mark a major turning point for the hero we all came to know. However, he was seen as a super influential figure after Cobra’s death, so it is possible that Sabo killed Cobra in order to become a new icon for the revolutionaries in One Piece.

But, even then, this is a very sharp turn from the Sabo character that fans have seen up until that point. Most fans think that if he did really kill Cobra, there would have been no real reason – he may have been forced or in a situation where he had no other choice.

Will Cobra Return In One Piece?

Since there are so many questions surrounding Cobra’s death, many fans are wondering – Did Cobra die at all? Perhaps he escaped to safety and will return at some point, which would tie into the theory of Sabo helping him fake his death.

But, it seems Cobra was actually killed. He was quite old and frail at the time of the statement, meaning he may not be able to take on much more damage on the run. However, it’s still pretty fun to theorize – who knows, One Piece fans may just get the surprise they’re hoping for!

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