A new report provided details behind the release of Samoa Joe from WWE, including when talent first learned of his departure.
Joe had been working in a backstage capacity at NXT as a scout following his brief return to the ring earlier in the year that saw him capture the NXT Championship for a third time before relinquishing it due to an undisclosed injury.
According to a report from Fightful Select, talent actually learned about Joe’s release on Wednesday even though the news did not break publicly until Thursday. WWE has not been making public statements about releases for quite some time, but had been sending updates on their talent relations app. However, this hasn’t been the case recently, meaning there has been no internal communication from the company about recent strings of releases.
The report also claimed that the reason behind Samoa Joe’s release lined up with the reported philosophy that the company is looking to dismantle the vision Triple H had for NXT from 2013-2021 and remove people Triple H brought in directly.
Fightful Select notes that they were told that no in-ring talent would be a part of this latest set of releases, which indicates that the company considered Samoa Joe’s time as an in-ring competitor to be over. Staff at the Performance Center noted to Fightful that after Samoa Joe was stripped of his NXT Championship due to an undisclosed injury, there was little to no talk of him returning to the ring and he’d settled into his new role as a scout very well.
Sources at the Performance Center do believe, however, that Joe is likely to return to the ring outside of WWE now that he’s no longer with the company. One source is said to have found it shocking that he was not cleared to compete again after winning the NXT Championship.
Another talking point noted in the report was that people believed if William Regal was to be released from the WWE, Samoa Joe was likely to follow, and this ended up being the case.
One high level WWE employee told Fightful Select that Samoa Joe handled the situation “as professionally as possible, and considering the last few years he’s had here that’s easier said than done.”
In keeping with that professionalism, Samoa Joe took to social media to address his release in a very classy way, noting his gratitude for having gotten to work with amazing young talent.
Extremely fortunate and grateful to all the young & amazing talent I had the pleasure of working with in the past months. Only saddened at the loss of an “excuse” to see their continued growth & achievement . I am very excited for there future,….. and mine 🙃
— Samoa Joe (@SamoaJoe) January 7, 2022
There is currently no word as to whether or not the former NXT Champion will be subject to a non-compete clause, but Inside the Ropes will continue to report on the situation as more details become available.