The surprising list of releases by WWE continues to grow in 2022 with the latest report confirming that Samoa Joe has since been released by the company. Samoa Joe last appeared on WWE NXT before the 2.0 relaunch where he defeated Karrion Kross for the brand’s top championship at NXT TakeOver 36, only to relinquish the belt a few weeks later due to “undisclosed injuries.” Kross was then called up to the main roster to appear on WWE Raw, but he too was released in 2021 due to ongoing budget cuts. Samoa Joe previously worked as a commentator for WWE Raw but was released, only to be brought back by Triple H in an “enforcer” role on WWE NXT.
This latest release was first reported by Fightful and was next after many WWE NXT behind-the-scenes workers and crew members were also let go from the company. It comes in the wake of the relaunch of NXT 2.0, which was executed shortly after Triple H stepped away from his role behind the scenes due to health issues. It was reported that WWE boss Vince McMahon took more control of the NXT brand with an increased role for Shawn Michaels, and production eventually shifted to the NXT 2.0 program as it exists now.
WWE upset many fans in the new year with mass releases of NXT staff, especially in the case of William Regal who was portrayed as the company’s on-screen authority figure for many years while also helping mentor the developing talent. They also released WWE Hall of Famer Brian James AKA Road Dogg, who was Triple H’s former stablemate in Degeneration X and someone he worked closely with behind the scenes at NXT.
James went on to release a statement in response to the news, explaining that he would be taking some time to himself to contemplate his next move. “Guys, I’m doing well and I thank you for all the love. I’m gonna take a few days for my self and process this. God is still on the throne and will provide. It’s just business!” James wrote.
Stay tuned to ComicBook.com for more updates as they become available.