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AJ Gets A Raw Deal

WWE Championship
I am writing this just an hour after Extreme Rules has concluded, and while the thoughts are still being formed. But at first blush, that’s my big takeway from things. AJ Styles, highly decorated and respected international star,someone who had been a top free agent for so long before WWE finally bit the bullet and acquired his services, got screwed.

How, you ask?

No, not with this match, specifically. It was an extreme match, the rules were basically non-existent, and he got to take advantage of them just as Roman did. I don’t like who won, but it wasn’t a screw job.

The screw job? Is how he basically was keeping a seat warm. Or at least, that’s the instant perception from where I sit. Think about it. He has a couple really good matches that arguably could have gone either way. But before he’s even backstage in Newark, Seth Rollins is back, reminding his former partner who really owns that belt. And, unless WWE has something crazy in store for us (like, unexpectedly making Rollins wait, or giving us a triple threat match), I am expecting that the Styles/Reigns program is going to quiet down, if not entirely go away. Which it shouldn’t, but the returning Rollins isn’t going to sit on the back burner either.

AJ Styles, as talented as he is, deserves better than to have been a seat warmer, a bridge program. Yes, Reigns needed to look good, and Styles certainly elevated his match quality. But in terms of who has done more in the ring, who is a more-seasoned veteran and respected by his peers? Styles wins and it’s not even close. Regardless of where that happened, Styles I think deserved better. Of course, as I say this, it’s entirely possible Styles knew it was a short term program (for now), and was OK with it. I mean, heck, who here wouldn’t want Rollins to quickly win back his title and then feud with AJ? Can you imagine those matches? But I digress…

So, on sheer talent alone, AJ should have been walking around Newark Sunday night (not recommended..) holding a new trophy, that being the WWE Championship. But he didn’t, because WWE wanted and needed someone to make Reigns look better than a complete tool, all while keeping the seat warm for someone else.

Now, mind you, that someone else is a pretty popular someone else, in the form of Seth Rollins. But it doesn’t take away the anger and frustration I felt when it was official, that Rollins is gunning for the title he never lost.

I get it folks, I really do. On two accounts. One, when AJ was newly departed from TNA, I openly admitted I had no clue about his skills and if they’d translate into a WWE ring (they do). Second, I get that Rollins is ready to be back, and WWE is seeking to revitalize a flagging product. So I get why they want to do what they did, as it’s best for business…but I can’t help but think that WWE made a mistake. They could have brought Rollins back in differently, timed it better, like say, a month down the road. But with ratings a constant issue, and Rollins having lead the company to good PPV stats in 2015, it’s a no-brainer.

I just wish that, to bring Rollins back, we didn’t have to watch the poor guy lose another WWE title match, considering how good he’s been of late. So, in that respect, I think WWE could have given Rollins some more time off, setting him up for a return at say, Money In The Bank.

I don’t think WWE intentionally short shafted AJ. But I think that’s exactly what did happen, and it will be interesting to see how things play out.

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  • Barooq Kidd #POP

    The Styles/Reigns feud was used to make Roman look good..and it succeeded. Dude had to step up his game to meet the pedestal that AJ is on. It was a fun feud. Now, what’s next is the key..Rollins/Reigns feud was going to happen obviously as soon Seth was ready. Honestly, I see AJ resting his injuries a little bit. IC title feud coming in his future prolly.

    • Lord Stevie REGAL #blublood

      For now i can see aj resting his back. Noticed him clutching it a few timescearly on plus he was rested prior for it.

      As far as the IC scene, tht belongs to cesaro and mix with cesaro prob winning at the next ppv. Owens and zayn continue their feud separate.

      I can see AJ winning money in the bank. The guy belongs in the main event, nothing else. Plus i dont think he would have signed for nothing less. As much as i as well as a lo of ppl want cesaro or owens to be mitb holders or champ, right now AJ is miles above them overall for that spot

      • Barooq Kidd #POP

        In my opinion, AJ and Ambrose are early favorites to win mitb

        • Lord Stevie REGAL #blublood

          Ugh ambrose doesnt belong in the main event anytime soon. All his matches start off with all this energy and quickly dies with peopke wanting it to end fast. Not just this past ppv but at the very least all of 2016. He can be main event but not now by a longshot

  • jcice13

    why you didn’t see AJ as someone warming a seat is beyond me..and that is not a knock on his abilities but a realistic view.Reigns just had his big build up to Mania, he wins the belt and they’re going to take it off him in less than 2 months??? no way‚Ķthey’ve been building him since the get go to be in this slot and with Cena and Rollins both coming back you know Reigns is defending the title at summerslam vs one of them probably a face Rollins..so yeah AJ was just filling a slot to kill some time but also give him a nice push for the future..
    he in no way is being short”shifted” quite the opposite, he’s been here for a cup of coffee and he’s main eventing RAWS and a PPV in the biggest slot on the card‚ĶI bet there are 35 guys in the company that want to be “short shifted” like that

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