Just two years ago, Rusev was one of the hottest stars in WWE. His "Rusev Day" chant had taken over nearly every single popular chant among WWE's regular performers, and his Rusev Day t-shirt was one of the hottest selling on the WWE Shop. Walking around Bourbon Street in New Orleans during WrestleMania 34 weekend in 2018, the Rusev Day shirt seemed to be the most popular choice among the masses.
Fast forward two years and both Rusev and Aiden English, who was at his side during this period, have been released from their WWE contracts. Rusev is another name to add to a long list of stars who became organically popular, yet the company failed to capitalize on their natural momentum.
During an interview with Inside The Ropes, English spoke about the original plans for Rusev Day and how they expanded due to the popularity of the team and their chant.
“By pure circumstance, I end up in a match with (Randy Orton) while he’s kind of starting this thing with Rusev, and so it was really coincidental and I don’t think (it was) meant to become anything,” English said. “I was just there since I was literally already there, caused some kind of distraction which helped Rusev, then the next week we had that big ceremony where I sung the Bulgarian national anthem for the first official ‘Rusev Day.'
“As far as I know, that’s literally all it was supposed to be, this kind of crazy ceremony. Randy interferes, drop, boom, him and Rusev carry on and that was it, I was back to whatever I was doing. But it got such a good response both in the arena and social and everything that they’re like, ‘Well, let’s do something next week. Get the tux back we’ll do something else.’ And then it was like a backstage and then they were like, ‘Okay well, let’s do something else.’ And all of a sudden it was like, ‘Alright well, now you’re going to come with him on live events.’ And then it just went from there. I remember by Survivor Series, two months later, there were people in every building chanting Rusev Day, and the rest is literally history. It was so organic, man.”
During another section of the interview, English revealed that he and Rusev largely ignored several of the lines that were thrown at them by WWE's writing staff at the time.
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