Wrestling is often at its best when it's blurring the line between reality and kayfabe, but not everybody was on board with Drake Maverick collecting a contract at the end of WWE NXT on Wednesday night.
Maverick lost to El Hijo del Fantasma in the final of the NXT cruiserweight title tournament. As Maverick was walking up the entrance ramp following the match, Triple H presented him with a new contract.
For some, it was a heartwarming moment. Former WWE star Lio Rush didn't fully see it that way:
Rush's frustration is understandable.
WWE announced April 15 it was planning to make a number of cost-cutting measures amid the coronavirus pandemic, which included releasing some wrestlers from their contracts. Rush, Maverick, Rusev, Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson were among those initially let go, and more departures trickled out in the ensuing days.
In a video he posted to Twitter, an emotional Maverick said WWE was still allowing him to compete in the cruiserweight tournament and that the fans watching NXT would "have my all."
Assuming Maverick's release was official and that WWE didn't initially plan to bring him back, this wouldn't be the first time the promotion shifted course because of a wave of public momentum. But it's one thing to insert Daniel Bryan into the main event of WrestleMania XXX; it's another to use the real-life story of wrestlers losing their jobs to pay off an angle.