WWE’s talent release over the past week saw several low-carders face the boot, and one of the rather surprising names in the list was former United States Champion, Rusev.
Rusev was widely considered as a major prospect in the company after his stellar debut in 2014, but it quickly faded away due to WWE’s inconsistent booking. The Bulgarian Brute turned face a few years ago and reinvented himself to become one of the top babyfaces in the company. He recently starred in a high-profile rivalry with Bobby Lashley, which saw him ‘lose’ his wife to the Almighty.
Rusev’s next destination is still a mystery, but AEW’s senior personnel are already on the lookout for him. Jim Ross discussed Rusev on the latest episode of Grillin’ JR and felt that Rusev is a main-event level talent who should be a high priority for Cody and co.
Ross praised Rusev’s work and was perplexed as to why WWE would release him. His on-screen and off-screen personalities are genuinely likeable and combined with his talents, AEW could find a new face in the main-event picture.
“There’s got to be some semblance of a reason that the massive push for him was cut short. I don’t know what that reason is. I’ve never heard any scandalous tales about the guy. I find him to be a softhearted, well-raised guy. Meaning he’s polite and he’s a decent human being. Rusev would be my priority. That’s who I’d want to go after first because I can see him having some major pay-per-view main event matches with a variety of top talents in our company AEW. Anyone would be smart to hire him.”
Rusev is just 34 and has a long career ahead of him. He faced the likes of John Cena, Roman Reigns and The Undertaker in WWE, and had one of the most iconic moments in WrestleMania when he entered the arena on a tank during WM 31.
Ross worked as a talent scout during his time with WWE, and his advice will surely be music to the ears of the top brass at All Elite Wrestling.