Lillian Garcia welcomes Samoa Joe to the show.
Joe says that he’s had a great career that has spanned many years and promotions, but being able to join WWE at this point in his life is a pretty special thing for him. He says his initial contact with the company came about through Paul Heyman, and then through the likes of Joey Mercury and Road Dogg.
When he was in final contract discussions with WWE it was determined that he would make his debut with the company in NXT. NXT was quickly establishing itself as a major player as WWE’s third brand, and Triple H wanted to continue that momentum. Bringing Samoa Joe into NXT was a significant shot in the arm for that brand at the time.
Joe recalls his initial workings with WWE over a decade ago. He worked with John Cena and other future WWE stars in WWE’s developmental territory during that time, and while other performers were getting signed by WWE and brought up to RAW and Smackdown, Joe was told by Jim Ross that he wasn’t what WWE was looking for at that time.