World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) star John Cena has revealed he was almost fired before he became one of the biggest or probably the biggest superstar in the history of the company. He holds the record with Ric Flair for most WWE championships won (16) and continues to be one of the most followed wrestlers.

Cena has been in WWE for well over a decade and continues to be a big draw despite him being not a full-time performer owing to his commitments in Hollywood, where he has begun to make himself a name with roles in some top productions.

But the 41-year-old always credits the WWE for taking him to the heights he has achieved and believes it is a “land of opportunity.” Cena pointed toward the sudden rise of Becky Lynch as the most popular athlete – male or female – in the WWE at the moment and believes everyone has a chance to make it big in the pro-wrestling world.

Cena admitted he was close to being “fired” before he decided to take a chance and change his image. Despite not being the WWE management’s first or second choice as the face of the business, they had no choice owing to the fans of the WWE Universe. He was equally loved and hated by the audience, which did no harm to his popularity and his ability to sell tickets and merchandise.

“I’m really passionate about this stuff. I’ve always looked at WWE as the land of opportunity. I have been surrounded by performers that so many times become complacent and negative and they think like, ‘Oh, I can’t do this because of X.’ Or ‘I can’t do this because this person is holding me down.’ I know when I speak to those people they don’t necessarily take stock in what I say, but I only say what I do because I started from nothing,” Cena told Uproxx.

John Cena John Cena is now a part-time WWE star with his main focus on Hollywood. In this picture, Cena attends Paramount Pictures' Beijing press conference for 'Bumblebee' in Beijing, Dec. 14, 2018. Photo: Yanshan Zhang/Getty Images for Paramount Pictures

“I was about to be fired. I was in a Becky Lynch-type scenario where I was forgotten and I was about to be let go and I took a chance on myself. I took a chance on redefining my character and it worked and I’ve never stopped. And I wasn’t the corporate headquarters first, second, third, fourth, fifth or sixth choice, but the audience began to make noise. And I connected with the audience and the rest is history,” the 16-time WWE champion added, comparing the similarity in Lynch's and his career trajectory.

Lynch is currently the face of WWE, with fans obsessed with the Irishwoman and her brazen disregard for The Authority. They are completely enamored by her actions and every televised episode of either Monday Night RAW or SmackDown Live has the WWE Universe chanting her name.

Meanwhile, Lynch’s great rival Ronda Rousey, who is currently the RAW women’s champion has threatened to quit WWE by claiming that even though she loves the job, she does not need it. She is expected to fight Charlotte Flair at WrestleMania but during the most recent taping of Monday Night RAW, she laid down the title at the feet of commissioner Stephanie McMahon and demanded Lynch be reinstated from 60-day day suspension.

“The thing is I love this job, I really love this job," Rousey said on her official YouTube “Ronda On The Road” show. “[But] I don’t need it at all, not the least little bit.”

“So the second I’m not happy, I reserve the right to walk out the door and live happily ever after with the love of my life. And The Authority, so they are called in this company, they are just used to bullying everyone around.

“And like I said, they give them just enough for them to live a lavish lifestyle but still have to come back, right? And I don’t,” she added.