If there's one thing that has been a constant over the years in WWE, that's the fact that nothing goes up without Vince McMahon's agreement. Former employees have gone on to say that the product is written for a single person, that being Vince.
Vince has the final say when it comes to every single aspect of the product that he created and turned into a global phenomenon. The boss has made his employees as well as the fans aware of this fact on numerous occasions. Over the course of the past few decades, Vince McMahon has changed his mind on major angles. Vince has tweaked major WrestleMania match outcomes on the day of the event, most notably Brock Lesnar vs The Undertaker at WrestleMania 30. In the following list, we'll take a look at 5 Superstar pushes Vince McMahon canceled abruptly.
At WrestleMania 30, Cesaro won the first-ever Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal, by displaying an incredible feat of strength and bodyslamming The Big Show out of the ring. This victory was met with a string of loud cheers inside the Superdome and the fans knew that the Swiss Superstar would finally be getting a much-deserved push.
Soon after, Cesaro split with Jack Swagger and joined forces with Paul Heyman. It seemed as if everything was working to the T, with Cesaro having a mouthpiece in the form of one of the best talkers in the business. It wasn't long before WWE separated the two, and this didn't end well for Cesaro. This led to him kicking off a losing streak against the likes of John Cena, Jack Swagger, and Dean Ambrose. Cesaro was also told to stop using the Cesaro Swing as it was making him too popular. The push that had begun at 'Mania, never reached a conclusion and Cesaro went on to become a mid-card mainstay along with Sheamus.
The incredibly creepy and mysterious Superstar came to the main roster after WrestleMania 20. It all began with a series of disturbing vignettes shown on WWE TV. The character donned a religious zealot-type outfit and was immediately pushed as a heel, defeating Superstars like Scotty 2 Hotty and Hardcore Holly. The original plan for Mordecai was to get pushed for months on end, with him finally taking on The Undertaker at WrestleMania 21. This rivalry could have done wonders to his career.
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This didn't happen though, as Kevin Fertig got into a bar fight. The news soon reached Vince McMahon's ears and he wasn't thrilled with Fertig's behavior in the least. McMahon immediately canceled his push and Mordecai abruptly disappeared from WWE TV. Fertig was sent back to Ohio Valley Wrestling and wrestled in the promotion for a while before he was released from WWE the next year.
#3 Kofi Kingston
Around a decade ago, Kofi Kingston received a major push, thanks to his incredible popularity among the WWE Universe. Kofi began feuding with Randy Orton, who led a stable named The Legacy at that time. The rivalry turned Kofi into a star and he went on to defeat Randy Orton in the closing moments of a 5-on-5 Traditional Survivor Series match. Kofi also hit a Boom Drop on Orton at Madison Square Garden, which is regarded as a pivotal moment in his career at that point of time.
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During a match on Raw, Kofi forgot to lay down for Orton to hit him with a Punt kick to the head. Orton was visibly angry at this and immediately delivered a thunderous RKO on Kingston, followed by calling him 'stupid' repeatedly. Soon after, Kofi's feud with Orton came to an end, and so did his push to the top. Kofi went back to being a mid-carder and it was rumored that Orton had a hand in halting Kofi's push.
#2 Lex Luger
By the early 90s, Vince had realized that Hulk Hogan wasn't the kind of draw he used to be in the mid-80s. Vince was desperately searching for his next big Superstar and decided to give a major push to Lex Luger, who suddenly turned from a narcissistic heel to an American hero. Luger accepted Yokozuna's challenge on July 4th, 1993 aboard a ship, and proceeded to bodyslam the Samoan to a chorus of cheers. He challenged Yokozuna for the WWE Title at Summerslam 1993.
Luger won the match, and the show ended with a mega celebration.
The problem? Luger had won by count-out and didn't win the title. The stipulation stated that this would be his only shot at the championship. It has been said that Vince McMahon decided that Luger wasn't drawing as well as it was hoped. The spot Luger was going to get was given to Bret Hart at WrestleMania 10, where he defeated Yokozuna to become WWE Champion.
#1 Triple H
In 1996, Diesel wrestled Shawn Michaels in a house show at Madison Square Garden. Earlier in the night, Razor Ramon took on Triple H. After the main event was done and dusted with, Razor Ramon and Triple H came down to the ring. In one of the most iconic visuals in wrestling history, the Kliq embraced in the middle of the ring, breaking kayfabe and confusing several fans in the process.
Vince McMahon was reportedly furious at this display and needed a scapegoat to take the punishment. WWE Wrestlers Diesel and Ramon were leaving WWE immediately after the incident, and Michaels was the WWE Champion. Vince ended up punishing Triple H and canceling his push. The Game was going to win the King of the Ring tournament that year, but Stone Cold ended up becoming the victor, resulting in one of the most legendary WWE careers of all time.