The latest round of NXT roster cuts caught many fans of WWE by surprise but a new report suggests that they may have also come as a shock to Triple H himself.
Sean Ross Sapp of Fightful first reported that numerous names from the NXT roster were being released from their WWE contracts on August 6th. All in all thirteen names were released, the highest-profile among them being former NXT North American Champion Bronson Reed, former NXT Tag Team Champion Bobby Fish, and Mercedes Martinez.
WWE has been making rounds of roster cuts on a fairly regular basis since April this year. They have also released Andrade, and Ric Flair after the two men asked to leave the company and perhaps, most surprisingly they also released former WWE Champion Bray Wyatt following months of inactivity.
Dave Meltzer reported on Saturday’s episode of Wrestling Observer Radio that Vince McMahon, Bruce Prichard, and John Laurinaitis oversaw the latest set of releases and were in the process of redirecting NXT towards its original iteration of developmental:
So Paul Levesque and Shawn Michaels didn’t have anything to do with the cuts. I mean, it was it was done by Vince McMahon, Bruce Prichard and John Laurinaitis. And the basic gist is that NXT is going to change in some ways and they think that the competitors, or the lot of the competitors, are too small and too old.
Now Meltzer has given further insight on the lack of involvement of NXT supremos Triple H and Shawn Michaels in his Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Meltzer says neither Triple H or Michaels knew the releases were happening until calls began getting made to affected talents:
“Even though they were NXT releases, it was Vince McMahon, Bruce Prichard and John Laurinaitis who were the ones who decided who would be cut. Those in NXT said that not only did Paul Levesque, who runs NXT, nor Shawn Michaels have a say in the cuts, but they weren’t even aware of them until after Laurinaitis started calling the talent.”
NXT star Samoa Joe has previously said that just hours after receiving his phone call in April from John Laurinaitis informing him of his own release, Triple H called to bring him back to the black and gold brand that he helped build.