by James Toal
Ahead of the WWE Live tour of Europe, we managed to talk to the ‘Phenomenal’ one himself, AJ Styles, and ask a couple of burning questions that have been on our minds recently. During the teleconference, here is what we managed to get from the current WWE champ on possible dream matches, and his thoughts on losing the United States championship to Baron Corbin.
Despite what people might say about AJ being called the best wrestler in the world, AJ commented on how he feels about himself being given that label. He came across as humble, claiming he didn’t know that if he was the best in the world, but feeling like he’s one of the hardest workers.
“I take a lot of pride in what I do. I try to perfect everything. But, being the best? That’s up for discussion. There are a lot of great performers out there, and you never know which one is going to be the next top guy. If you’re asking me if I think I’m the best wrestler in the world? I’d say I’m not.”
One rumour that sparked the interest of the online community was a possible match between AJ and the legendary Shawn Michaels. One thing we wanted to know was whether he has a dream opponent in mind. AJ divulged to us that he knows just what to say whenever a question like this comes up.
“When it comes to dream opponents that’s not up to me, that’s up to the WWE fans,” Styles said. “What do they want to see and how can we make that happen?”
He continued, “I just want to give the fans what they want to see. At the end of the day, they’re the ones paying to see it, so let’s give them what they want to see.”
After the results of the Hell in a Cell PPV, in which AJ lost the US Championship to Baron Corbin, we thought it would be important to get his views on Corbin and his overall feelings on losing the title to him.
“I think that I’ve said it before that Baron Corbin takes shortcuts. This business that we’re in, if you’re not cheating, you’re not trying, so I get that. But, at the same time, a guy his size shouldn’t have to take shortcuts. He should be able to maul through guys.”
He added that he accepts that he lost the championship and Baron Corbin took a shortcut in order to take that title away from him, Even after being sure that he had Tye Dillinger beat.
“But, that’s the name of the game when you’re in a three-way.” AJ continued “I don’t blame anybody, I still got to blame myself and you got to have eyes in the back of your head in a match like that, looks like I didn’t see it coming so I’ll accept the loss and I’ll just get the championship back.”
With the WWE heading to the UK once again, we wondered if there was any talent from here that had caught his eye or anyone that he would love to face in a ring. Unfortunately, due to the balance of work and home life, AJ doesn’t have much time to look at what others are up to.
“I’ve definitely seen some guys I’ve liked,” AJ stated, “But the opportunity of being able to watch them is just difficult. When you’re in the WWE you have to stay focused on what you’re doing. With me, staying focused on when I get home I got to push that out of my head to be a father and be a husband. I literally have no time do anything else, I haven’t even had the opportunity to watch anything else.”
He continued to praise for what the WWE UK stars have been doing, specifically from the UK championship tournament and working in NXT.
“I’ve had some opportunities to watch these guys and interact with them. But, I haven’t been able to watch it for what feels like a couple of months.”
To finish up our time with him, we decided to ask some of his thoughts on WWE 2K18. What stood out to us was AJ’s rating standing at an overall 90, compared to The Undertaker who currently stands at 89 at the time of writing. When asked for his opinion on towering above superstars like the deadman, AJ seemed surprised.
“I don’t know how a former world champion, including The Undertaker, gets moved down to an 89. I’m glad they moved me up to a 90, but if you have too many guys above AJ Styles, then something’s wrong here. I believe I’m one of the better workers in the WWE and that the ratings should reflect that…As far as the game goes, I think it looks really good.”
Finally, to end our time with the Face that Runs the Place. we decided to ask about when he finally gets to play the game with his children, will they be playing has their dad? Or will they be playing as other superstars to face their dad in the virtual ring? AJ remarked that his kids like playing as their dad, whereas the character that Styles will always go for, is the WWE Hall of Fame legend Sting.
“He’s a buddy of mine and I’ve always liked his character.” AJ reflected, then moved back to his children. “They’re just really good at that game, and I’m not very good at all.”