Written by J. Johnson
Last night, we all saw the re-debut of a phenomenal (no pun intended) professional wrestler known simply as AJ Styles. Styles was a former mainstay in TNA (Total Nonstop Wrestling) for many years until he ended his long association with the company in 2013. Prior to coming to WWE, would return to ROH (where he is a former Pure Wrestling and World Tag Team Champion). In March 2014, Styles signed a non-exclusive deal with New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW) and took the promotion’s top championship, the IWGP Heavyweight Championship, in his first match with the company.
After weeks of speculation and WWE themselves covering the rumors of Styles leaving NJPW for WWE, on January 20, 2016, it was confirmed that he had signed with WWE. Prior to signing, Styles also had extensive discussions with TNA and according to TNA had agreed to return to the promotion with Bullet Club stablemates Doc Gallows and Karl Anderson, before being offered a “blow-away deal” by WWE.
Styles officially made his WWE debut in the 2016 Royal Rumble match, entering at number three under the slightly altered ring name AJ Styles, but was eliminated by Kevin Owens after lasting twenty eight minutes in the match. Much to many who known about the rumors swirling his debut was a great one given the reception he got. It’s like when a wrestler who makes a name for themselves outside of WWE isn’t inside those walls fans clamor for that star to be in the company. When it happens you can feel the excitement (i.e. Finn Balor (Prince Devitt), Samoa Joe, Sami Zayn (El Generico), and others) from each fan in the WWE.
It’s an exciting time for wrestling fans. This year does spell for a lot of amazing moments especially in 70 days with WrestleMania taking over the Dallas area. AJ Styles in the WWE could be an amazing move on the part of WWE management. Like always we have to wait and see as the ‘Road to WrestleMania’ has officially begun.
Here’s an exclusive video from WWE moments after the Royal Rumble ended: