AJ Styles Forced To Learn WWE Style?
It’s no secret that when independent stars come to WWE they have to learn the “WWE style” of wrestling, a slower paced and more traditional babyface bounces back formula, with a focus on the cameras and commercial break timing. While AJ Styles is not new to TV wrestling, as seen in his match last week with Chris Jericho pacing might be an issue.
Some have suggested Jericho was showing his age and couldn’t keep up with Styles, though it’s highly likely that Y2J’s job was to walk Styles through a “WWE match” and that’s why it was a little off. Interestingly Jericho himself wrote extensively in his second book about how he found it tough to adjust to WWE when he jumped from WCW in 1999, and almost fell out of favor with management because of it.
“When you come to WWE, you’re basically starting from scratch, but he’s going to do great in the WWE,” he explained on a recent podcast episode. “It just takes a month or two to acclimate to the way that we do things, which is different from New Japan, which is different from Ring Of Honor, which is different from TNA.”
Rob Van Dam who worked with Styles in TNA and had to adjust himself when coming from ECW and when he came back from TNA, shared a similar opinion in an interview with Title Match Wrestling.
“If you haven’t been to the big show, then you are at a different level,” says RVD. “[WWE] do things a little different … you do things a certain way on your way up, but when you’re there you change some of the stuff. You might not want to, you may be kicking and screaming, because you don’t want to compromise what you think is better, but eventually you realize they’re the kings who draw the biggest crowds, make the most money and relate to the most amount of people.”
“I always felt that [AJ Styles] is so good, but he thinks he’s good enough. He’s gonna realize that he’ll have to compromise some of his stuff, he’s not gonna like it, but he’s going to be more well rounded.”
Of course in more recent years with the pushes of stars like Daniel Bryan, Seth Rollins and Neville, the company have been more forgiving of the faster paced matches. When Styles eventually gets in there with wrestlers more familiar with his style he won’t skip a beat.
Chris Jericho Rematch?
It also looks like whatever issues there might have been in the Jericho match will be overcome as the two seem set to continue to work together. “If things keep going the way we hope, you might see another Jericho/Styles match,” Y2J revealed on Talk Is Jericho. “I was really happy with [the match]. It was fun. It was fun to get in there with a new guy and kind of suss each other out a little bit. And now, it will only get bigger and more intense as we go forward.”
— Chris Jericho (@IAmJericho) January 31, 2016