The drama surrounding Monday Night Raw superstar Lio Rush appears to be continuing with no end in sight. One week after the Wrestling Observer Newsletter reported on the “internal heat” allegedly surrounding the 24-year-old wrestler, Rush explained his side in an interview with Fightful, while also seemingly complaining about WWE’s locker room culture and not getting paid for merchandise sales. This didn’t sit well with WWE Hall of Famer Mark Henry, who reacted to Rush’s comments on Thursday and accused the youngster of outright lying to him about his rumored backstage heat.
As quoted by Cageside Seats, Henry appeared on Thursday’s edition of Busted Open on SiriusXM, where he recalled a time when he took Rush aside and asked him about the “stuff” he had heard about him in the locker room. Henry recalled that he became angry after Rush allegedly denied that there was anything wrong and effectively rebuffed his attempts to reach out to a relative WWE newcomer.
“That’s a blatant lie to my face!” Henry said. “I was trying to help him. I was trying to let him know that if you have a question to ask, now is the time because you’re very likely not going to run into anyone that knows the system like I know the system. And he didn’t do that. He lied to my face.”
Henry also addressed Lio Rush’s remarks to Fightful about not making enough money to pay for his own car rental and hotel expenses. The former World Heavyweight Champion said that Rush “[needs] to change the way [he] is spending” and shouldn’t blame his financial troubles on WWE’s front office.
“If you spent everything you made before you got it, that’s your problem.”
Talking about Rush’s complaints about WWE’s current locker room culture and the ongoing practice of having rookies carry bags and other items for established wrestlers, Henry explained that what Rush is doing is “nothing different” from what he was asked to do as a WWE newcomer. He then suggested that present-day locker room hazing is not as harsh as it was in his time, as Rush would have also been told to do all the dirty work — including driving the rental car at all times — for erstwhile onscreen ally Bobby Lashley had he come up in the wrestling business in the mid-’90s like Henry did.
Separately, WrestleZone further quoted Henry, who also countered Rush’s comments that it wouldn’t be a “good look” for a young African-American wrestler like himself to be seen carrying other wrestlers’ bags. The WWE Hall of Famer said that this is an “ego issue” as opposed to being a “race issue,” stressing that even the greatest wrestlers in the company’s history, including “Stone Cold” Steve Austin and The Rock, started out by paying their dues in a similar way.