While Tuesday appeared to be the NXT swansong for both Johnny Gargano and Kyle O'Reilly, people within NXT reportedly believe they will be back.
On Thursday, Dave Meltzer of Wrestling Observer Radio (h/t ComicBook.com's Connor Casey) said he was told that while the WWE contracts of both Gargano and O'Reilly are set to expire this week and neither has re-signed, the belief within NXT is that they aren't leaving the company.
Meltzer noted that both Gargano and O'Reilly are set to become fathers in early 2022, which is why angles were written to transition them off television for the time being.
Additionally, Meltzer reported that one of Gargano or O'Reilly was "very much considering" signing with AEW, but hadn't made a choice yet. Meltzer also said the manner in which Gargano's situation was handled on TV means he likely won't be showing up in AEW any time soon.
Both Gargano and O'Reilly wrestled what look to be their final NXT matches for now over the past week. At NXT WarGames, Gargano teamed with Tommaso Ciampa, Pete Dunne and L.A. Knight in a losing effort against Bron Breakker, Carmelo Hayes, Grayson Waller and Tony D'Angelo in a WarGames match. O'Reilly and Von Wagner unsuccessfully challenged Imperium for the NXT Tag Team Championships on the same show.
Then, on Tuesday's episode of NXT, O'Reilly lost to Wagner in a steel cage match after Wagner turned on him.
Gargano had a more impactful potential exit, as he was given the main event slot to cut a heartfelt promo about his six years in NXT. At the end, Waller made a surprise appearance by attacking Johnny Wrestling with a steel chair and putting him through the announce table.
After NXT went off the air, Gargano and O'Reilly both appeared emotional in saying their good-byes to NXT:
The way they acted when the cameras were no longer rolling suggests they may not be back in NXT even if they re-sign with WWE.
If one of them is going to leave WWE and sign with AEW, O'Reilly seems like the more likely candidate because fellow former Undisputed Era members Adam Cole and Bobby Fish have gone to AEW already.
Signing with AEW would allow O'Reilly to re-form Undisputed Era and potentially feud with Kenny Omega and The Young Bucks, who comprise The Elite.
Gargano has friends and acquaintances in AEW as well, but his wife, Candice LeRae, remains contracted with WWE, although her deal is reportedly set to expire in spring 2022.
The future remains uncertain for both Gargano and O'Reilly, but one thing that seems likely is they will take some time off to focus on their families before making a firm decision.
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