After weeks of build-up on Monday Night Raw, the divisive “love triangle” storyline featuring Rusev, Lana, and Bobby Lashley saw a fourth person get involved on Sunday night at the WWE Network-exclusive Starrcade event.
As recapped by Cageside Seats, Lana took to the mic ahead of the scheduled Last Man Standing Match between Rusev and Lashley, announcing that she had good news and bad news. For the former, the “Ravishing Russian” said that she has a “hot boyfriend” in Lashley to be thankful for this holiday season, and for the latter, she said that his match against Rusev won’t be pushing forward due to the restraining order she filed against her husband. As such, she added, she and her onscreen lover were going to accept the win via forfeit.
However, that wasn’t the end of the night’s festivities, as Kevin Owens stepped out to interrupt the segment, getting a positive reaction from the live audience as he said that nobody cares about Lana and Lashley’s relationship. He also took some shots at Lana, criticizing her for losing the kayfabe Russian accent she had used for most of her five years as a main roster WWE superstar.
Thanks to Owens’ unexpected appearance, this year’s Starrcade ended with an impromptu match wherein he effectively replaced Rusev against Lashley. However, the WWE veteran still ended up beating Owens via disqualification, as Rusev jumped into the ring to attack Lashley, kicking off a brawl between both men that lasted until the end of the show.
Per Cageside Seats, the “Bulgarian Brute” seemed to have the upper hand in the show-closing segment, with the crowd at the Infinite Energy Center in Duluth, Georgia, apparently loving what they saw.
— WWE (@WWE) December 2, 2019
As previously reported by The Inquisitr, the Rusev/Lana/Lashley “love triangle” has been one of Monday Night Raw‘s most polarizing storylines. Aside from fans, people within the industry, such as WWE announcer Corey Graves, have also spoken out about how the angle seems to waste the talent of the people in it. However, Rusev admitted in an interview last month that the storyline hasn’t had any impact on his real-life marriage to Lana, adding that there aren’t too many performers willing to go as far as they have on WWE television.
Based on the ending to Starrcade, it would seem that the love triangle storyline isn’t quite finished yet, as there’s a possibility this week’s episode of Raw will see it keep moving forward after Owens’ surprise involvement. Despite its apparent unpopularity among many fans, reports have also suggested that it has driven a lot of social media engagement for WWE, while also being a personal favorite of the company’s chairman, Vince McMahon.