Why Vince McMahon Was Angry About WWE Storyline With Summer Rae, Rusev & Lana

Summer Rae was recently a guest on the "Insight with Chris Vliet" podcast, and the former WWE star spoke about her history with the company, including her storyline with Dolph Ziggler and her fellow former WWE stars Rusev and Lana.

The 2015 storyline, which saw Lana "fall in love" with Ziggler, while Rae joined up with Rusev, was ruined due to TMZ leaking the story that Rusev and Lana were engaged at the time. According to Rae, the article angered Vince McMahon, and the "soap opera" storyline ended abrubtly in a segment on the October 12, 2015 episode of "WWE Raw," when Rae called Rusev out for being engaged to Lana and using her.

"When the TMZ storyline got mysteriously leaked to TMZ, no one cares, we aren't Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, you know," said Rae. "That really set Vince off ... because I don't know why, but we were like the favorite storyline of him. It was crazy. I think at the time, Cena had a storyline for four months, and we were going on three, so just wasn't something you were seeing like how they do nowadays, like amazing, long storylines. The storytelling in WWE right now is just really coming around so differently. But it was interesting that we were like, we were getting crossover position, like great positions. And so when I went there, he was really upset."

No Payoff

Rae says she knew the storyline went "wrong" because she and Lana never had a "payoff match," though Ziggler and Rusev did wrestle each other and even had a match at SummerSlam 2015, where both of them were counted out. 

"I think the head writers at the time were really upset too, because they had just been so invested in it," she said. "We never had a payoff match. Lana and I never went back and forth. We never had the doubles match, even, so clearly something went wrong in the storyline."

Summer Rae was last in a WWE ring as an entrant for the 2022 Women's Royal Rumble match. Five years before that, in October 2017, she was released from her contract, while Lanawas released in June 2021. Rusev, who now wrestles in All Elite Wrestling under the ring name Miro, was released by WWE in April 2020.

If you use any quotes from this article, please credit "Insight with Chris Vliet" with a H/T to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.