It's no secret that it takes a special kind of person to make it in the wrestling world, let alone make it to the top of the food chain. You have to have a mix of selfishness, a big ego, but still be able to work with whomever you get put in the ring with to make sure that both guys come out of the match looking better than they did going in. Unfortunately that's not everyone's mind set when they enter the business, as for them there's only one thing that really matters, their position on the card. It doesn't matter what the other guy looks like or where he goes from there, as long as they come out on top of the feud and can move onto bigger and better things.
While the vast majority of professional wrestlers don't fall into that group, there are a few noteworthy Superstars who find themselves on here multiple times. These are times where Superstars pushed to keep the title on themselves or one of their friends, the times where they made a complete joke out of a match out of spite, or the times when wrestlers were punished for previously working for the competition. These are the instances where the mindset of those few individuals was pushed to the extreme, whether it is in matches or an incident backstage these are the most selfish moments in the WWE.
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18 Cena's First Encounter With Lesnar
Ever since his return to the WWE following WrestleMania XXVIII, Brock Lesnar was booked as an unstoppable force, a monster that no one wanted to be trapped in the ring against. Except John Cena apparently. With the entire WWE Universe incredibly hot to see The Beast Incarnate back in action, it only made sense to pair him with the resident top dog. What didn't make sense, however, was having Lesnar do the job to Cena in his first match back with the company.
While we may never know exactly how much of that was up to Cena himself, we do know that in the promo he inexplicably cut immediately after the contest, he did nothing to help anyone but himself. As if beating Lesnar wasn't enough already, Cena took to the mic to make sure that all the fans watching not only respected his toughness, but felt sympathy for the leader of the Cenation, as if he needed any more help being the center of attention.
17 Vince Books Himself To Win Title
It's hard to get much more selfish than when you have creative control and give yourself multiple titles, even though you aren't a wrestler. Vince McMahon apparently had no problem with that, as he made himself the World Champion at one point. Granted he did give the belt over one day later, but he still is in the history books as one of the very select few who get to say that they carried the top title in wrestling.
The championship should be a milestone, a sign from the people in charge that you're worthy of being the top dog in all of the land. It loses its value dramatically when it's given to people like Vince McMahon, like when David Arquette won the WCW World Title and killed any credibility that the belt carried. There's no room for people like that to be given the biggest championship, as having a lackey of the authority figure winning the belt accomplishes the exact same thing, but without the detrimental side effects of having a suit be on top of the wrestling world, even if it's only for a day.
16 Triple H Politics To Get Title Off Angle
For as long as he's been in the WWE, Triple H has always held some power in backstage proceedings. Shortly after arriving in the company he joined up with The Kliq who are among the most notorious backstage politicians of all time, keeping a voice in Vince McMahon's ear in order to keep themselves at the top. Even after his Kliq brethren had left the company, Triple H still found himself with influence over the boss, marrying his daughter tends to have that effect, and he was not too happy when Kurt Angle found himself as the WWE Champion.
According to Hunter, Angle was simply too small to be champion which is the same ridiculous argument that Hogan had about dropping the belt to Bret Hart. Just like with Hogan, Triple H wanted the title off the best technical wrestler in the company, perhaps threatened by that ability and their knack for getting over the audience. It all came to a head at a creative meeting when Jerry Brisco had enough of the complaining and suggested Hunter actually wrestle Angle and see how the bigger guy fares.
15 John Cena Finishes The Nexus
In a story that became infamous thanks to Chris Jericho and Edge, the finish to the SummerSlam match up between Team WWE and Team Nexus all came down to John Cena and they made a mess of it. While The Nexus was red hot and dismantling everything that the WWE could put in front of them, it all came down to Cena to put the final touches to their rocket push and establish them as the biggest thing the company has seen in a long time.
Instead, however, he made sure that his spot atop the WWE remain intact and destroyed any and all credibility that the group had established by that point. For most men, taking a plain DDT is enough to keep them down at least for a near fall, but for John Cena even a DDT onto exposed concrete wasn't enough to keep him down for the count. In fac,t it was only a matter of moments before he popped up like nothing had ever happened and proceeded to eliminate the final two members from Team Nexus by himself. How could the WWE possibly wonder why their top babyface receives such a negative reaction after stunts like this one? To Cena's credit, he has admitted that this was a booking mistake since.
14 The Kliq vs. Dean Douglas
While it's safe to say that the Dean Douglas character was never going to get over as a main event talent, there was still plenty of potential there for a solid mid card heel for years to come, until The Kliq got involved. The story goes that Shawn Michaels was set to defend his Intercontinental Title against Douglas at an In Your House pay per view but instead Shawn got himself beaten up by a group of servicemen in a bar the night before and decided he'd rather give the belt up instead of drop it to Douglas.
Not too bad so far, as Douglas was given the IC Title that night since Shawn was unable to defend it, but The Kliq had something else in mind and demanded that Douglas lose the strap immediately to Michaels' buddy, Razor Ramon. Obviously the group had quite the pull backstage because that's exactly what the WWE decided to go for, Douglas was given the belt then thrust into a title defense against Ramon that same night promptly dropping the title and keeping it within The Kliq family.
13 Michaels Multiple Title Forfeits
It's no secret that Shawn Michaels has struggled with some personal demons throughout his professional career and putting people over for a title change seemed to be one of his biggest problems. Whether he lost his smile or got manhandled by military men, there always seemed to be an excuse for him to hand the title over instead of wrestling and losing the title.
His penchant for doing so affected a wide range of Superstars from Bret Hart to Dean Douglas, and it even led to The Undertaker standing by at WrestleMania XIV just in case Shawn tried to pull one of his tricks, instead of dropping the belt to Steve Austin. Winning a title should be one of the top moments of a wrestlers career, especially if you topple someone like Shawn Michaels in order to win it, but just being handed a title because the previous champion didn't feel like defending it takes all the spotlight away from the new champion, derailing their title reign before it even begins.
12 Triple H And The Summer Of Punk
Arguably the biggest thing in recent wrestling history, the summer of Punk was a red hot angle involving one of the most over wrestlers of the past ten years. CM Punk came in demanding change, saying he was going to turn the whole system on its head while he was champion and ensure that things were never going to be the same again, and then Triple H had to involve himself in it.
After making himself guest referee of the title bout between Punk and John Cena at SummerSlam, Triple H became a central part of the storyline when Kevin Nash rambled out to the ring in order to lay Punk out which allowed Alberto Del Rio to cash in and become the new WWE Champion. From that point on, the storyline went from being about the rebellious champion who rallied the people to Triple H trying to control the rebel by any means necessary, leading up to an inevitable match between the two. You would think that the red hot Superstar who was recently champion would have the advantage over a mostly retired corporate executive, but classic Triple H reared his ugly head, as he scored the victory and poured a bucket of water all over the coals of the summer of Punk.
11 Hulk Hogan Needs The Spotlight
In the mid 1980s until the early 1990s, there was only one thing that mattered in wrestling and it was Hulk Hogan. The Hulkster was indeed running wild all over the landscape of professional wrestling, somehow always managing to come out on top, no matter the situation. Take WrestleMania IV for example, where Hogan was eliminated from the tournament to crown a new champion in the first round, yet still managed to find himself in the ring after Randy Savage won the title, handing the belt over and stealing the thunder from Macho Man. Or you could look at the main event of WrestleMania VI when Hogan actually did the job to The Ultimate Warrior, but much like the Randy Savage incident, Hogan made sure to grab the belt himself and slowly hand it over to Warrior, before proceeding to hang out on the entrance ramp to make sure the camera's stayed on him.
A moment that should've catapulted The Warrior to the forefront of everyone's wrestling conscious instead turned into a moment where everyone was thinking about Hogan, just as he wanted.
10 Vince's Treatment of WCW Stars
There's one constant throughout Vince McMahon's time as the head of the WWE, if you got over in a different company, you're going to get buried when you step in his ring, though this seems to be changing now. The best example of this selfishness was the failed Invasion angle after Vince bought out WCW in 2001.
While he wasn't able to get the cream of the crop, McMahon was still able to grab a handful of marketable stars like Diamond Dallas Page straight off the bat before bigger names like Kevin Nash, Scott Hall, and Goldberg made their way into the company over the following years. If we focus on DDP and Goldberg, two of the most organically over stars that were made in WCW, we can see just how Vince views his competition. While both guys could've made invaluable contributions to the show, McMahon saw both fit to be used to put over other guys instead of capitalizing on their popularity. Vince had to show that he was the better man, that he won, no matter the long term damage it did to the Superstars. Let's not even get started on what he did to Sting recently.
9 Michaels Buries Vader
Shawn Michaels is certainly one of the greatest wrestlers of all time, but that doesn't mean he couldn't be a bit of a jerk at times. Usually his shenanigans were reserved for backstage where himself and The Kliq had Vince McMahon's ear in terms of creative decisions but those antics would occasionally carry over into the ring as we saw during his title defense against Vader.
Fresh off a great run in WCW, Vader was billed as the next big thing in WWE, a huge dominating heel who would simply crush whoever was unfortunate enough to be put in his way, but that all came to a halt after his match with Michaels.
It's unknown whether it was a miscommunication or a mistake by one of the wrestlers, but it was easy to see that whatever Vader did upset Michaels during the match, causing HBK to yell at the big man in the middle of the match. After their contest, Shawn complained to the higher ups about Vader being too stiff and working an unsafe style ensuring that Vader's alleged run with the title would never come to fruition, keeping Shawn as the top guy for a while longer at least.
8 The Ultimate Warrior Demands More Money
While it was widely believed that The Ultimate Warrior demanded more money out of Vince McMahon on the night of SummerSlam in 1991, we now know that simply isn't true. It was a longstanding battle between the two in an effort for Warrior to try and be the highest paid member of the roster that began weeks earlier.
What is true, however, is that Warrior was willing to no show the second biggest pay per view of the year because he felt that he should be getting paid more than Hogan. If this would have happened a few years earlier, when Warrior was red hot and being groomed to replace The Hulkster as the torch bearer of the company, it would've made more sense but by this time, Warrior was past his prime and just trying to get a big payday.
Warrior was willing to risk his career, as no one would be willing to hire a wrestler who pulls a stunt like this, in order to get paid. It's not as egregious as holding Vince up the night of a show, which we'll get to a little later, but still an incredibly selfish move that threatened one of the biggest events of the year.
7 Hogan Disrespects WWE Title While Champion
It's impossible to argue against the impact Hulk Hogan had on the WWE, considering it's entirely possible they wouldn't be here today if it wasn't for people coming in droves to see The Hulkster do his thing, but that's no excuse for the way he talked about the company's top title while promoting a show in Japan.
Towards the ends of his career, Hogan was free to chase down some dreams outside of the WWE, including acting and even competing in other organizations like New Japan. During the build to a huge clash between WWE Champion Hulk Hogan and IWGP Champion The Great Muta, Hogan made no doubt about which of the two titles meant more to him completely disparaging the title he held saying it was nothing but a toy, a trophy to hang up on the mantle while the championship he really wanted was around Muta's waist.
While Hogan was on his way out of the WWE, he had no qualms about completely burying the top title in the business, only caring about endearing himself to the Japanese fans and not giving a single damn about the company he helped create.
6 The Montreal Screwjob
The single most infamous event in WWE history, The Montreal Screwjob goes down in the books as the night that Vince McMahon became Mr. McMahon and the night that "Bret screwed Bret." While you can certainly see Vince's side of things, as not wanting his championship to show up on the competitor's show makes sense, there was no reason for him to believe that Hart wasn't going to drop the title before leaving.
Bret had been one of the most loyal WWE guys up until that point, guiding the company through some of the worst times in company history and was only going to leave because Vince McMahon wanted to take back the massive deal he had offered The Hitman. Instead of taking Hart's word, Vince pulled out all the stops to make sure that he didn't leave Montreal with the title, working in cahoots with Shawn Michaels, Triple H, and Earl Hebner to get the title onto HBK at the expense of the public image of the WWE.
McMahon got his title back, but lost any good faith that was rebuilt with the public after the steroid scandal five years earlier.
5 Hogan Changes Rumble Finish
In the lead up to the Royal Rumble in 1991, it was clear that Mr. Perfect was set for big things in the WWE. The man had it all, as his character was easy for the fans to hate, his mic work wasn't out of this world, but it was plenty serviceable, and his in ring work was better than nearly everyone else on the roster.
Everything was looking up for the relative newcomer, as he was positioned to come out victorious in the prestigious Royal Rumble match, until Hulk Hogan came along. Hogan got into the ears of the decision makers backstage and, as usual, wanted to make sure the spotlight was on him after the biggest match of the night. Thanks to The Hulkster, the plan was changed just hours before the event, with the winner switching from Mr. Perfect to who else but Hulk Hogan himself.
4 Hogan And Michaels Don't See Eye To Eye
There aren't very many match ups that could truly be defined as a dream match, but Hulk Hogan vs. Shawn Michaels is certainly part of that elite list. The build began with Michaels turning heel on his tag partner leading up to their colossal contest at SummerSlam 2005, with the original plan being a series of matches that saw each man pick up victories over the other, but shockingly enough Hogan wasn't about to let himself be the one looking up at the lights.
Thanks to Hulk Hogan, the plan was changed to a single match at the biggest event of the summer, which was something that HBK was not too thrilled about. Michaels let his frustration show throughout the match, taking ridiculous bump after ridiculous bump, making a mockery of the dream match that had fans salivating. While Hogan's pull got the series cancelled, Michaels reacted incredibly unprofessionally, making their match up go from famous to infamous.
3 Hogan Refuses To Put Hart Over
WrestleMania IX will live forever in infamy for a variety of reasons, from the ancient Roman theme, to the ludicrous outfits the announcers were wearing, to it taking place in a parking lot. The longest lasting image from this event though is how it somehow ended with Hogan back on top of the WWE ladder.
The night was a big one for The Hulkster, with it being his grand comeback after taking some time off and with him competing in a match for the tag team gold. Clearly that wasn't enough for Hogan, as he made his way out after the main event that saw Yokozuna capture the championship from Bret Hart thanks to outside interference by Mr. Fuji.
The ultimate good guy Hogan came out to check on his "friend" Hart when he was challenged to a title match by Fuji, which Hogan would of course win. The original plan was completely different, however, with Hart retaining at Mania then dropping the belt at a later date, only for it to culminate in a big showdown and victory against Hogan at SummerSlam in a true passing of the torch moment. The only problem being that Hulk thought that The Hitman was too small to realistically beat him in a match, changing the plan to the mess of a finish that we got before Hogan dropped the title back to Yokozuna.
2 The Curtain Call
One of the most infamous non scripted events in WWE history, the curtain call was one last chance for The Kliq to make sure all anyone was talking about after an event was them. With Scott Hall and Kevin Nash leaving for rival WCW, the group that had been ruling over the WWE locker room with an iron fist just couldn't resist going out with a bang.
Following a main event that saw Kliq members Shawn Michaels and Nash go one on one, Triple H and Scott Hall emerged from the back so the group could unite in the ring to say goodbye. Typically, something like this wouldn't be seen as that big of a deal, considering how close the group was, but there was one big problem, Michaels and Ramon were supposed to be good guys while Nash and Hall were bad guys. While everyone then was aware that wrestling was just a show, seeing the heels and faces come together and embrace like that completely shattered any illusion that the company was trying to maintain.
1 Jeff Jarrett Holds McMahon Hostage for $300,000
There are two distinct halves to Jeff Jarrett's professional wrestling career, his time in WWE spent as a struggling mid carder and his time afterwards where he was a consistent main eventer. The difference between the two sides is that his WWE run came before he had creative control and let his massive ego take over the booking decisions.
For most of his WWE run, Jarrett managed to keep that side in check, until his contract expired while he was still IC Champion. Jeff was scheduled to drop the title to Chyna, but since he wasn't under contract, he had no obligation to do so, but he did agree to do the job, if Vince McMahon forked over $300,000 that is. Jeff showed his true colors and burnt his bridge back to the WWE to the ground by holding up Vince just to line his own pockets, especially considering that no one outside of Jarrett himself would ever consider him worth that amount of money.
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