On the latest episode of The Sessions with Renee Paquette, AEW talent William Regal joined the show to talk about his release from NXT after eight years spent working with WWE’s developmental brand and 20 years total with the WWE. Regal suggested that change was coming to NXT no matter what and that there wasn’t a place for him there any longer.

“I was expecting it, to be honest,” Regal said. “It makes perfect business sense, as well. You can’t have somebody else come in when everybody there is still coming up to me and asking me what should they be doing … It was the perfect storm, and then [Triple H] got ill.”

Triple H wasn’t the only one who had dealt with a health scare, however.

“In 2019, I nearly died,” Regal recalled. “January the 4th of 2019, I was given 24 hours to live, and they were going to cut my leg off because it had sepsis in it, and I managed to kick out of it. I’d been in hospital for eight weeks, and I thought I was going to die. I got my family around at Christmas that year, in 2018, and I’d made peace with the fact that I was going to die. So when I came back in 2019, there was a lot more stuff going on, there was AEW … I hadn’t got the time for all that. I need to make NXT what it can [be], I work here, let’s do this.”

But despite his devotion to NXT and his commitment to tuning out the competition, William Regal claims that the brand peaked in early 2020 at NXT Takeover: Portland.

“I have a theory that everything peaked at Portland,” Regal said. “We go into Portland, and we come out, and all the top fellas were coming up to me and going ‘We’ve done this style to death. We’ve done everything.’ And there were people trying to think how can we change a bit of something because it’s going to be more of the same from now on. There were a few little discussions like that going on, so we were starting to think like that, and then COVID hit. And then it was ‘Never mind that, let’s just survive.'”

If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit The Sessions with Renee Paquette with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.

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