More On April 29 WWE NXT Releases

Unfortunate news, as WWE cut ten NXT stars on April 29.

Malcolm Bivens/Stokely Hathaway, Dakota Kai, Raelyn Divine, Mila Malani, Draco Anthony, Sanjana George, Persia Pirotta, Harland, Dexter Lumis and Paige Prinzivalli were all released Friday, April 29.

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John Laurinaitis made the cuts and cited budget cuts as the reason. The email internally read "Due to budgetary cuts, and with immediate effect as of today, 4/29/2022, we have come to the terms to release the following."

Those cited have 30-day non compete clauses.

We're told that Malcolm Bivens, now again Stokely Hathaway, had made it abundantly clear that he didn't plan on re-signing. He'd also done this last year, but was re-signed as a result of the pitch of the Diamond Mine stable after not being used on TV for two years. Hathaway was offered a new deal in February, but informed WWE that he wouldn't be signing it.

Dakota Kai was said to have seen the release coming, and beyond that had indicated to WWE that she was not planning on renewing her WWE contract.

Harland had signed with WWE after much hype, but coaches and officials told us they felt like he'd not progressed in the ring quite enough for their liking.

There was one NXT official that contacted us and expressed frustration that several angles, acts and stories were affected with little to no notice or preparation.

We've spoken to several of the released stars who have been in good spirits, all things considered.

Fightful Select has learned more about plans or lack thereof for both Malcolm Bivens and Dakota Kai following their WWE releases.

Sources indicated that WWE had tentative main roster plans for Malcolm Bivens, and had pitched his name as a potential manager for Omos months ago and passed on it, before MVP was solidified as the direction. In addition, we're told LA Knight was considered for the spot. However, when presented a new, restructured contract, Bivens passed on it after re-signing last year. We're told that his deal was set to expire towards the beginning of 2023.

Daktoa Kai's contract was set to expire in April of 2023, Fightful has learned. Kai got several looks on the main roster in dark matches, but those we spoke to at the time of the WWE draft said there was "no solid direction, plan, or firm ideas" for her on the main roster and had no idea if she'd even be called up. As we reported, Dakota Kai had also made it clear she didn't plan on re-signing with WWE.

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