In a recent podcast appearance, AEW superstar Jake Hager -- who was previously known in WWE as Jack Swagger -- claimed that John Cena refused to let him cash in his Money in the Bank contract on him back when he was in possession of the briefcase in early 2010.
As quoted by talkSPORT on Wednesday, Hager appeared on this week's edition of Chris Jericho's Talk is Jericho podcast, where he looked back on his first -- and only -- reign as World Heavyweight Champion on SmackDown. Back then, he cashed in his MITB contract on Jericho, though as he recalled, the original plan was for him to cash in on John Cena, who then held the WWE Championship as a member of the Monday Night Raw roster.
"I had a little inclination, but I had no idea what was going to happen. The night before, I teased it on RAW. I hit Cena with the briefcase, I snuck up on him when he had one of his brilliant promo segments. Later, come to find out, he refused to do the job for me for the [WWE] Championship. We won't talk about that. Ugh. 'The most unselfish top man in the business.'"
Hager also explained how he was told that the new plan was for him to cash in on Jericho. According to the AEW star, that was when he realized his current Inner Circle stablemate was someone in the business he could trust, as the veteran told him that he had to take his title shot seriously and was "very sincere" in doing so.
In conclusion, Hager said that his World Heavyweight title win was one of the most memorable moments of his pro-wrestling career, as separately quoted by Ringside News. He also continued putting Jericho over as a good friend and a person he could look up to as a veteran mentor, given how serious he was in stressing the importance of being a top-tier titleholder in WWE.
Reports of Cena refusing to lose to certain superstars during his heyday as a full-time in-ring performer are nothing new. Per Comic Book, the 16-time world champion allegedly "campaigned" to change the ending of the elimination match between The Nexus and Team WWE at the 2010 edition of SummerSlam, thus allowing his team of established stars to pick up the win. That topic was touched on earlier this year by Arn Anderson, who explained on his eponymous podcast why the match's outcome might have contributed to The Nexus' ultimate failure as a faction.