Some time ago, in a lecture by Rabbi Alon Anava, I heard this same theory as written below - but Rabbi Anava did not mention any names. I can't remember which shiur it was, if anyone does remember please leave a comment.
The following is quoted from Shuvu Banim - text by Yissachar Dov Berg
“I would like to tell you a story that I heard from very reliable sources. When Rav Mordechai Eliyahu was on his death bed slipping in and out of coma his wife Rabbanit Tzivia Chana Eliyahu asked him, ‘The Baba Sali promised you that you will live to see the Moshiach, you are about to leave this world to pass on to a world which is complete goodness, what about the promise of the Baba Sali!?’
So Rav Mordechai Eliyahu answered her, ‘You should know, that Moshiach was supposed to be here already but there are two tzaddikim that are holding him off from coming in order to give people a chance to do teshuva because once Moshiach comes there will be no more opportunity to do teshuva, everyone will remain on their level (and those who don’t merit will not merit seeing the redemption as chazal say only 1/5th of the people will merit). So his wife asked him ‘who are these two tzaddikim?’ He answered ‘Rav Dov Kook and Rav Eliezer Berland’.
All this shouldn’t come as a surprise for those who are following this story as Rav Kook himself on a separate occasion mentioned The Deal that he and Rav Berland made together with Baba Elazar Abuchatzeira to cancel the harsh decrees before Moshiach. Moshiach may have been pushed off until now but we can rest assured that we all have a much better chance of surviving to see him.