WWE taped the next two episodes of NXT inside the Capitol Wrestling Center on Wednesday night, but one decision the company made earlier in the week still haunted the show. During the taping for the Aug. 3 episode, Karrion Kross stood inside the ring for a promo directed at Samoa Joe (it was confirmed earlier in the night that Joe would challenge Kross for the NXT title at NXT TakeOver: 36), but according to Trent Osborne of Bodyslam.net the champ was hounded by chants for Jeff Hardy. In case you missed it, Kross made his debut for Monday Night Raw earlier this week but lost to Hardy in just two minutes.
Fans who were present for the show told Bodyslam that the chants were so bad that the production team opted to reshoot the segment at the end of the show. One source said, "They even lied to us and said something special was going to happen so we wouldn't leave. [A Crew Member] told me the show wasn't over. When [we] tried to leave, he told us there was a surprise."
The segment saw Joe try to attack Kross, only to get held up by security guards while Kross fled the scene. The Aug. 22 show will see Joe wrestle for the first time since early 2020 when he suffered an injury and was kept on the Monday Night Raw commentary team for over a year. Joe was then released on April 15, but within hours Triple H called him about bringing him back to NXT.
"[John Laurinaitis] called me, and I thought it was a rare call from Johnny. 'Hey, what's up, Johnny? How you doing?' He told me, 'Hey, listen. We're going to have to release you from your contract.' And I said, 'OK.' You know, like '... cool.' And 'Joe, we think the world of you, we'd love to work with you again.' I was like, 'All right. No, absolutely, Johnny.' And, honestly, I did have a bit of an understanding," Joe told Ryan Satin on a recent Out of Character podcast.
"Obviously, at the time, dealing with injuries, coming back, getting ready to get my rehabilitation going and all that stuff, we're in a pandemic, all this other stuff, so I got it," he continued. "It wasn't unexpected. But at the same time, I was relatively calm about it. I've kinda been in this situation before. A younger me probably would've been really, really freaked out. But at this point, you just roll pivot. That's really all there is to it when it comes to life in general. That's kind of the mantra I've kept. So at that point, I think I was already kind of in the works on setting up the next framework for whatever else I was gonna do. A few hours later, I get a call from Hunter, and that all pretty much kinda changed."