AJ Styles’ current reign as WWE Champion is one of the longest in recent history. While generally well received, it has been noted that, for some reason matches come in the middle of pay-per-views.
There are some who wonder if the fact that the WWE Championship doesn’t close the show anymore means a lack of faith in the current champ’s ability to draw.
Bully Ray, more commonly known as Bubba Ray Dudley, has a theory as to why Style’s matches are placed during the middle of shows and it isn’t a slur on Styles ability.
Speaking to Dave LaGreca on an episode of Sirius’ Busted Open Radio, Ray stated that Styles matches were placed where they were because WWE management knew that otherwise he would steal the show.
“When they know there’s a match that will steal the show, but they don’t want that match to overshadow any other match, they put it in the middle of the show,” shared Ray.
Ray further dismissed the idea that Styles wasn’t thought of as a star, citing the fact that management obviously thought highly enough of Styles to put him on the cover of W2K19.
“That tells me they do have faith in AJ. But with the matches, you know his matches are gonna blow everything else away,” said Ray.
Ray cited his own experience back in the days when the Dudleys, Edge and Christian, and the Hardy Boyz were putting on show-stealing matches, in the middle of shows.
“AJ is put in the middle because his matches are gonna steal the show and we don’t want his show-stealing matches to outshine things which we have as our perceived main event,” explained Ray.