Ask any pro wrestler to name their number one goal and it'll probably involve WrestleMania and/or one of WWE's World Titles. After all, everybody wants to be WWE Champ...right? Not so fast, because even those lucky few who reach the mountain top sometimes find out they'd rather not be there.
There are loads of different reasons, but most of them boil down to the pressure becoming too much, injuries taking their toll or personal problems getting in the way. Then, there are examples of wrestlers who just didn't think WWE's booking was a good idea - one even knocked back a lucrative 'Mania payday (not that he needed the money!).
Brace yourselves for wild tales of guys putting others first, men who weren't sure they wanted another stint in the championship hot seat, and someone who actually turned a blind eye to something that was written into his contract before returning to the promotion.
This often paves the way for others to receive opportunities they might not have had. Daniel Bryan, JBL and Rey Mysterio are just a few of the names who might've missed out...
10. Jeff Hardy (2003)
Fingers crossed one Jeff Hardy can finally put his personal problems behind him.
There are those who don't fancy seeing Jeff return to AEW - those folks believe he'd be better off away from wrestling, and that's understandable. Still, at least Hardy is more receptive to help these days. That definitely wasn't the case back in 2003.
Jim Ross has spoken passionately about Jeff's potential back in '03 before. According to the longtime announcer, Hardy declined WWE's offer to send him to rehab 19 years ago. When JR relayed that info to then-boss Vince McMahon, the Vin-man signed. He'd been thinking about making Jeff WWE Champ.
Hardy knew that a big push was waiting on the other side if he agreed to attend rehab for drug and alcohol problems, but he wouldn't go. The belt either didn't mean that much to him, or his personal demons were so overwhelming that they took control.
Again, here's hoping for brighter days ahead.