News emerged late on Thursday that Samoa Joe has been released from his WWE contract for the second time in the last nine months. Joe, who had been released as part of April 2021’s now-infamous “budget cuts,” was brought back soon thereafter. The former Monday Night Raw commentator returned to the ring to become NXT Champion for the third time.
More NXT releases have been sprinkled throughout the week, notably William Regal, a former intercontinental champion who had been scouting for the company for nearly two decades.
It’s now being reported on Fightful Select that they were told talent would not be a part of NXT cuts, which confirms that Joe, as well as Timothy Thatcher and Danny Burch, were most likely not set to return to the active roster. Fightful also reports that word surfaced of Joe being let go on Wednesday, despite the news not being reported until Thursday evening. The reason being cited for these releases, per the same report, is that WWE is attempting to “[further dismantle] of the 2013-2021 vision of NXT and what Triple H had built” as they continue to move forward with NXT 2.0.
Joe had recently accepted a role scouting for the promotion, as he acclimated himself to life away from in-ring competition. However, Fightful Select notes that everybody they spoke to within the Performance Center anticipates the former Ring of Honor World Champion to return to active competition elsewhere. Joe released a statement on Twitter following his release.
Regardless of where Samoa Joe ends up or the role that he performs in, he offers a wealth of knowledge and experience that’s valuable to any company. Joe is expected to immediately become one of the industry’s hottest free agent targets.