Although Samoa Joe was released by WWE back in April due to budget cuts, it was reported that Triple H was eager to bring Joe back for him to work in NXT once again.
That’s exactly what happened as Joe is the enforcer for NXT GM William Regal on NXT TV while also working in the talent scouting department behind the scenes.
In an interview with NYPost.com, Triple H commented on Joe being released after working as an announcer and then brought back to the NXT brand.
“Coming out of COVID and a pandemic and everything else, all companies are having to make difficult decisions and we were no different,” Triple H said. “It’s a part of what we do and it happens on a regular basis, all companies have to do it. It’s not the most pleasant part of what you do, but it is what it is.”
“It wasn’t like he got let go from one part of the company and the other part of the company [hired him]. It’s all one big company. Everybody knows what everybody’s doing. There was an opportunity for him to transition, no different than you would say, ‘Well, he was released from this pitching contract and started managing the team and became a coach.’ It’s a similar situation.”
Joe recently revealed that he is now working in the company’s talent scouting department. Even before Joe was initially cut in April, Triple H says conversations about Joe’s backstage role were already being discussed.
“It was something that we were already talking about anyways,” Triple H said. “And what people tend to focus on, because it’s the visual, is the in front of the camera, the character side of it. But what Joe and I have been talking about for a long period of time, before COVID, probably from the time he started in WWE in general [is] that’s he’s a very smart guy that’s very business-oriented, has a level head, and all those things. And [we discussed], ‘What is the future like and how can he help build the future,’ and he was enamored with the other side of the business and what we do.”
While Joe’s has a new position backstage with the company, the former United States Champion seems keen on an in-ring return. Triple H likened Joe’s situation to the one he’s been in for the past decade.
“There was an opportunity for him to leave one realm and come into the other, but in coming into the other it sort of connected the dots for him to still do something in-ring from a preference standpoint — no different than I do, [or] other performers who have other jobs as well,” Triple H said. “It’s a piece of it, but the bigger component is the talent-development component that he’ll be a big part of. I’m really, really excited about that because again, at this stage of my career, it’s all about developing the next generations of superstars.”
Triple H has been a big fan of Joe as Triple H was the person who initially brought him into WWE in 2015 for NXT. Earlier this week, Joe went into detail about how his return came about after talking with Triple H.