William Regal was about to sign Wheeler Yuta, Daniel Garcia and Ricky Starks to NXT deals before WWE "changed directives" for the brand at the last minute.
The AEW man told talkSPORT's Alex McCarthy that all three All Elite stars were ready to come in and be part of the NXT roster several years ago. Then, Vince McMahon switched up NXT's signing policy and Regal's plan became redundant overnight.
All three eventually inked contracts with Tony Khan's company instead.
Yuta, who is the current ROH Pure Champion, also works alongside Regal in the Brit's Blackpool Combat Club faction; they're joined by Bryan Danielson and Jon Moxley. Meanwhile, Starks is a key member of Team Taz and Garcia recently linked up with Chris Jericho in the Jericho Appreciation Society.
It's clear that AEW sees big things for all three men in the future, but McMahon apparently didn't. He passed on signing the trio, and told Regal that WWE's signing strategy had switched from hot young independent wrestlers to something else.
It's incredible to think what Yuta, Garcia and Starks could've achieved had NXT remained the same and not changed to 2.0.