During one of Miro (Rusev’s) recent streams, he spoke about a match idea involving Kurt Angle that would’ve led to a match between the two at WrestleMania 31.
The match idea and Kurt Angle wanting to work with him: “I wanted to wrestle him. I pitched — so, the first year when I was with WWE I pitched for Kurt Angle to come back and wrestle me. That was before I knew about the John Cena situation … I wanted to bring back Kurt, you know, as the American thing … The Swagger thing happened at SummerSlam and now, I started thinking of, ‘What could we do for ‘Mania.’ ’cause nobody told me that I was going to work John for ‘Mania. And I wanted to wrestle Kurt. I said, ‘Hey,’ and I talked to two people. I’m not going to say who they are, they’re really up there. But I said, ‘Hey, how about we bring Kurt [in]? I think it’s going to be great. One, he’s the greatest professional wrestler ever. Two, it’s just USA coming back and I was still the Russian.’ Like, I was still doing the Russian flag, the Putin [references] and everything. Kurt would have been the perfect, perfect person.”
Why the match never happened: “And they told me no. They’re afraid — this is verbatim. This is verbatim from the person who told me. He said, ‘We don’t want to feel responsible if he comes back and dies.’ That’s from somebody that I spoke to about it. And there were two people there. If one says I lie, hopefully the other can say that it’s true. Which I doubt, but it doesn’t matter to me… Yeah, and in the end man, he got that match with Corbin. I always wanted to wrestle Kurt.”
His appreciation and respect for Angle: “Just once again, he’s been my favorite wrestler forever … Yeah man, it would have been great. It would have definitely been the best. And I even texted Kurt back then, before I even knew him. I didn’t text him, I DM’d him … I sent him a message on Twitter. “Hey Kurt,’ something something. I think I was just telling him I wanted to work with him. And then we ended up talking back and forth.”