Professional wrestling is an inherently dangerous business.
It always has been, such is the nature of the game. You're unlikely to see as rigorous bloodshed as The Great Muta vs. Hiroshi Hase or as physically stiff, potent wars between Vader and Stan Hansen anymore, but pro wrestling is now dangerous to a different extent, with Canadian Destroyers becoming oversaturated and Superkicks being performed while wearing explosive-laced sneakers. These have been executed safely up to this point, it must be said - but for how much longer will it last?
The threat of serious injury is industry-wide. Some of the profession's most morbid blemishes unfolded beyond WWE's sports entertainment circle. Sid Vicious snapping his leg clean in half? That was in WCW. Sabu having his neck broken? Check ECW. Eddie Edwards having his eye bashed out with a baseball bat? That'd be IMPACT, partner.
In WWE, the risk remains real, despite the family-friendly direction the company has travelled in since the days of broken necks and Hell in a Cell falls in the Attitude Era. The ACL crisis at the WWE Performance Center is proof of this alone.
It's proof, too, that sometimes, the injury doesn't always happen in the ring...
10. Cody Rhodes Tears His Pec (WWE Hell In A Cell 2022)
Cody Rhodes contested a thrilling, berserk Hell in a Cell match with Seth Rollins at the titular event in 2022, easily the stipulation's best execution in over a decade, in what was the third of the pair's three one-on-one outings across the year to set a high gauge for the quality of Rhodes' work post-AEW...
...while nursing a completely torn pectoral muscle.
The audible gasp of the 12,834 in Rosemont's Allstate Arena as Cody removed his jacket was felt, personally, by those watching at home. Rhodes' chest was a toxic purple. The swelling encompassed his entire right shoulder and right side of his chest but Cody, ever the resilient worker, wrestled Rollins like he'd merely suffered a broken lip. Chest-based offence from Seth furthered its severity; the butt of a kendo stick being drilled into 'The American Nightmare's' chest was one particularly horrid sight.
Cody Rhodes had suffered the injury before Hell in a Cell itself while Cody was weight training, with Cody himself "insistent" on completing the match with Rollins. It was a genuinely remarkable feat of wherewithal from Rhodes to go through with the bout. He had weighted star power and was WWE's first get from AEW, so his position on the card wouldn't have been destroyed had he pulled out - but pull out he wouldn't.