AJ Styles spent the most of 2018 as WWE Champion before dropping it to heel Daniel Bryan on the Survivor Series go-home edition of SmackDown Live. The Phenomenal One will now face Bryan for the WWE Title on January 27 at the Royal Rumble pay-per-view event in Phoenix.
Styles is currently going through a character switch in WWE – a more aggressive and merciless persona on the lines of Charlotte Flair‘s new heel character. With his contract expiring in April, Styles may jump ship to All Elite Wrestling (AEW).
On PW Insider Elite audio, Dave Scherer noted that Styles could leave WWE for AEW and “he would certainly fit in with what they do.”
Mike Johnson also revealed that AJ has already done a lot of damage to his body and given his age, he would definitely want to sign the biggest contract in his career treating it as his last.
“Listen, he is toward the end of his career. When I interviewed him […] he talked about if there’s anything differently he would have done in his career he would have gone to NXT. I asked him if he regretted not spending time in NXT because he went right onto the main roster at the Rumble. He went, ‘No because I’ve put in a lot of my time and mileage on this body and I only have a limited time left and I’m getting older.’”
“He’s toward the end of his career and he’s got a family. So if I’m AJ Styles this is how I look at it […] If I’m going to sign a deal I’m going to sign it with the expectation that it’s the last contract I’m going to sign. So what’s gonna give me the most band for my buck?”
It’s no secret that AJ Styles is not just a name, he is a brand. Every promotion in the world wants to bag the man even if that means paying a hefty paycheck for a light/limited schedule.
It would be interesting to see if Styles can force WWE’s hand and sign a part-time deal like that of Brock Lesnar‘s while playing between them and AEW to negotiate the most jaw-dropping contract possible.