WWE Releases Performance Center Staff Members, Including Hall of Famer Road Dogg

WWE released an unknown number of staff members from the WWE Performance Center on Wednesday. The company released an official statement to several news outlets, writing “With the continued evolution of NXT 2.0, we’ve decided to part ways with some of the staff based in our Performance Center. We thank them for their many contributions throughout the years and wish them the best.” According to Fightful’s Sean Ross Sapp, one of those releases was WWE Hall of Famer Road Dogg. Coach Ace Steel and creative producer Ryan Katz were also confirmed to be let go. Stay tuned as more names become available.

The company cut more than 80 wrestlers in 2021, ranging from former world champions and main eventers to Performance Center trainees. NXT also underwent some major changes in 2021, rebooting as NXT 2.0 and putting a greater emphasis on homegrown talent trained at the PC over wrestlers who developed on the independent scene.

Fightful has learned Road Dogg is among a series of personnel cuts in NXT

— Sean Ross Sapp of Fightful.com (@SeanRossSapp) January 5, 2022

Update: Another release, as confirmed by PWInsider, was Senior Vice President of Consumer Products Sarah Cummins. She had been with the company since late 2018.

WWE’s numerous releases and firings since April 2020 have been met with outrage from fans and wrestlers alike within the industry. Tony Khan, president and founder of All Elite Wrestling, even took a shot at the company over the contracts its wrestlers sign.

“Anyone who signs a contract (in WWE) these days, is not signing a real contract. It’s a temporary arrangement,” Khan told Busted Open Radio in November. “People who come wrestle with me, a lot of these people are frankly lifers and they know that. There are some people who are here, who work really hard and there are some people who come in and work more than really hard and I feel like is their actual life and will be with me for the rest of my life. I don’t know if everybody who works for my competition can say that. I think there are people who work there and they aren’t sure they will be there next week. There is a lot more security with a contract here.”

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“I can’t say I’m going to extend every contract or bring every person back, but I also haven’t been doing mass layoffs. I’m not the most profitable company of all time, I don’t brag about being the most profitable company of all time. I do brag about bringing in a lot of revenue for a start-up and being a real success story. What I will brag about is we haven’t been doing mass layoffs and we haven’t fired 15 people last week or 18 people the week before that. It’s not something to be proud of when a company lets all those people go and you’re putting press releases out like that frequently, I don’t think it’s a good thing. I don’t want to make light of that kind of thing ever,” he continued. “When you talk about a bidding war, each person is their own individual case and there may be multiple people coming for his services, but we’ve seen most of the talent going in one direction and, I think that’s for a variety of reasons, but I’ve been very selective in the people I’ve signed and every time there has been a mass layoff on the other side it’s terrible and I can’t say I would be able to take on every one of these people.”