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Dr. Death

The Top 5 Wrestlers Who Turned Down a WWE Contract

Rating: 3 votes, 4.67 average.
Thanks, but no thanks. Over the years Vince McMahon and the WWE have heard these words on a few occasions, and it got me to thinking why? Shouldn't a wrestler want to join the biggest wrestling/sports entertainment company of all time? A wrestler can make a lot of money in the WWE. Not to mention the fame and acknowledgement that goes with it. But for some wrestlers that is not enough nor is it what wrestling's about. Today we are going to take a look at my top 5 wrestlers that are giving the WWE a cold shoulder so to speak, and their reasons for doing so. So without further ado here's the list.

Counting down the top 5 wrestlers to say "No Thanks" to the WWE:

5. Nikita Koloff -

"The Russian Nightmare" is a former NWA National Heavyweight Champion, was named the PWI Most Inspirational Wrestler of the Year in 1987, and was awarded PWI Feud of the Year in 1987 for his feud with the Four Horsemen. After his NWA World Title match against Ric Flair at The Great American Bash in 1985, McMahon approached the burgeoning superstar with a deal that promised Koloff an immediate massive push, in which he would give him either the Intercontinental Title, or a main event match with Hulk Hogan at WrestleMania 2. Nikita Koloff turned him down because he believed that the push he was set to receive in the NWA would give him greater leverage for a more lucrative WWF contract in the future. A year later he had become a megastar within the NWA, and McMahon approached him again, and again Koloff declined. The amount of money was huge, but Koloff wanted Hogan and was told no. Nevertheless, Koloff became a star in his own right, and it's interesting to ponder how the course of WWE history would have changed had he accepted that first deal.

4. Rebecca Reyes -

Most of you probably know her as Reby Sky, unfortunate girlfriend of the even more unfortunate ex-WWE and -TNA wrestler Matt Hardy. Last December, Reyes posted this on her Twitter account:
“Weird day. Just had to turn down WWE (per my Lucha Libre USA contract). Very weird day.”
Apparently she wouldn't have been able to continue working with LLUSA had she signed with WWE. It is unclear what kind of contract she was offered—it was most likely either a developmental contract or a contract to appear on Tough Enough—but the fact that she turned it down to continue her training with LLUSA speaks to her desire to learn the craft, rather than just to make a bunch of money.

3. Davey Richards -

Davey Richards is the current ROH World Champion and an IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Champion, and was ranked #25 in PWI's top 500 singles wrestlers of 2011. He turned down an offer from WWE in 2009 stating
"It's not for attention I do this, it's not for money, it's not for notoriety. It's for my beliefs, my morals, my creed. I am a man who believes hard work must be rewarded and laziness must be punished. I've simply walked away from places before who I feel have not shared this moral with me."
So apparently Richards isn't so interested in playing the politics game. It's a valid reason to turn WWE down, as its backstage politics have come under fire in the past.

2. A.J. Styles -

In 2001, the phenomenal A.J. Styles was under contract with WCW. He didn't get to do much while he was there because WCW was bought out by the then WWF. The WWE powers that be decided they didn't want Styles, and so he was left without a job. In April of 2002 he was offered a developmental contract; which he declined stating that he's steered clear of WWE because he believes it's a company full of "backstabbers." A.J. Styles went on to become a cornerstone of TNA; it's difficult to imagine what the promotion would be like without him. However, it seems that he has achieved all he can there. However, with all the complaining he's been doing about TNA's direction lately, maybe he'll rethink his prospects.

1. Sting -

What longtime wrestling fan doesn't know this story? Sting was one of the biggest, if not the biggest star in WCW history; and he's also the biggest star never to work for WWE. Not only did he turn down a contract back when WWE bought out WCW in 2001, but he turned down what would have been a legendary main event match with The Undertaker at WrestleMania XVII. In an interview with the U.K.'s Daily Star, he explains why;
“There are so many variables. Let’s just say that I turned it down for the same reasons I always have. Something in me never trusted what would happen up there, based entirely on the track record with other WCW guys and everything that went on after Vince bought WCW."
Nevertheless, fans still salivate at the mouth as they wait for Sting to finally make his appearance inside a WWE ring. Already there is some speculation that the mysterious "It Begins" promo could signify a run for Sting with WWE (even though I myself definitely think it's Jericho). Who knows, perhaps one day, to the surprise and delight of us all, he'll finally ink that contract, but it wont be today.

Well that's my list of the top 5 wrestlers to tell the WWE no. I hope you enjoyed reading it and feel free to comment and let me know what you think.

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Updated 11-27-2011 at 11:43 AM by Frank

Thoughts and Opinions


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  1. Dr. Death's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Incubus_99
    great blog...but i think aj styles had a couple of matches (if not one) with the WWE...
    That is correct, it was right after WWE bought out WCW and AJ Styles had 1 or 2 tryout matches for them. The WWE decided they did not want Styles at the time so they let him go.
  2. THE_CRIPPLER's Avatar
    Great Blog, I loved that you included Nikita Koloff. I thik he should be number 2. The WWF had Huge plans for him, He would of main evented Wrestlemania with Hogan and Became a Legend and house hold name.

    I would replace Reba Sky with The Great Sasuke, In 1997 WWF was starting a LH divison and wanted to focus it around Sasuke. Instead he had 2 matches and declined the WWEs offer for full time cause of money or he seen the LH divison was a joke.
  3. knox's Avatar
    wow, Dr. Death does it again. Literally one of the best countdown blogs I've great. Obvious that Sting is #1 but it was smooth how you through in Nikita & Davey Richards. Great list.

    I would've added DDP, I'm not sure if he ever worked for the WWE or was contracted. But your spot on about Sting. Sting continues to push Sting heavy because he's literally one of the greatest stars in this business ever and has the right to say he never worked for the powerhouse company known as the WWE. He's a guy that Vince can take no credit for.
  4. ejaspy's Avatar
    DDP had a WWE run 2002-ish. He did a weird angle where he stalked Undertakers wife. Problem with that was, Taker's wife was seriously, horse face, bowling shoe ugly. So here's a guy married (at least I think they were still married) to Kimberly Page who was hot as hell back in the day, stalking a nasty man-faced biatch. Didn't quite add up. Pretty sure he had a European Title run somewhere in there too. Did I mention Taker's wife was ugly?
    Updated 11-28-2011 at 01:22 AM by ejaspy (typo)
  5. twoot2's Avatar
    Definitely agree with Sting being number #1 would have been good to see him have a short run in the wwe possibly facing Taker at Wrestlemania 27 but he turned it down.
  6. KC_Kyng's Avatar
    ok i agree with most of this list minus #4. Just cuz she turned down a contract doesnt mean anything... i thought the title of this post was top 5 wrestlers not top 5 ppl who are under contract currently who can't join
  7. Yano88's Avatar
    Aside from Sting, the pther 4 never went to the top (WWE) so to me, they are not Top Wrestlers.
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