2016 was without a doubt an incredible year for AJ Styles. After making a name for himself all around the world, WWE finally came calling, and AJ made his big debut as the third entrant in the 2016 Royal Rumble match. Since then AJ has wrestled at WrestleMania, main evented several WWE pay-per-views, and as of this writing he’s the current WWE Champion.
AJ Styles had his fair share of great matches in 2016 with opponents such as Roman Reigns, Dean Ambrose, Chris Jericho and of course John Cena. The current WWE Champion recently spoke to AL.com to promote the WWE live event at the Legacy Arena on Saturday, and Styles revealed that the matches he had with Roman Reigns were his favorite matches of 2016.
“I have a lot of great matches in 2016. There are some I was real proud of. With Roman Reigns — and don’t get me wrong, WrestleMania was also a big one, too — but I just felt like my matches with Roman Reigns set the tone of how AJ Styles was going to be presented in 2016, like this guy who gets after it and has great matches with just about anyone on the roster.”
When AJ Styles made his WWE debut back in January of 2016, he debuted as a face. In the weeks that followed it was clear that the fans were very much behind AJ Styles, but only a few short months after his debut WWE officials decided to turn him heel as he entered his feud with John Cena.
The AJ Styles/John Cena rivalry is still one of the top feuds in WWE, and AJ Styles is getting cheered by the fans everywhere he goes, despite the fact that he’s supposed to be SmackDown’s top heel.
Given all that AJ Styles has accomplished in his career, and in WWE over the past year, it’s not hard to understand why the fans support him. However, fans out there might want to start laying the boos on thick for the WWE Champion, because he says he feels like he’s not doing his job right if people aren’t booing him.
“Sometimes I feel like if I’m not getting people to boo me, then I’m not doing my job right. So that’s on me. I need to be better about being the bad guy. And sometimes they just refuse. These fans just refuse to accept me as the bad guy. That has a lot to do with how much time I spent outside the WWE and coming here and doing so well, they respect that, I guess you could say. But it’s up to me to make sure that these fans find a way to boo me. And I think that when you’re in the ring with guys like John Cena where people love to boo him but when you cut a promo the way he did last Tuesday night, you’ve got to love that. You’ve got to love the passion that he presents, and that ultimately makes me the bad guy when someone with that passion comes at you like that. It was a really great moment.”
AJ Styles is set to defend the WWE Championship against John Cena at the Royal Rumble in San Antonio, TX on January 29.