At one time, names like AJ Styles, Samoa Joe, and Christopher Daniels carried TNA Impact Wrestling on their shoulders and made it one of the most exciting products in wrestling. However, over the years they lost their places at the top and Impact Wrestling started to fall hard. Now that he is in the WWE, AJ Styles appeared at Wizard World in Portland and 411mania reported that he said his ego “was definetly flattened” by the time he left TNA Impact Wrestling.
“Ring of Honor treated me real well, and New Japan treated me like a superstar. So I’ve got to give credit to them, who helped boost my ego a little bit because it was definitely flattened due to TNA’s service.”
What has to help his ego even more is that he came to WWE and skipped completely over NXT, debuting at the 2016 Royal Rumble. After that, AJ Styles put on some of the best matches of his career and eventually won a feud against John Cena and won the WWE world title, all in his first year in the WWE.
It was almost unheard of because the WWE normally ignored most of TNA Impact Wrestling’s stars through the years and never put them over established WWE talent. However, as AJ Styles said, Ring of Honor and NJPW helped to reinflate his ego somewhat and AJ Styles is an even better wrestler now than he was when he was a main event star in TNA Impact Wrestling.
While there are some who claim that AJ Styles had nothing to feel flattened about, the fact is that when Dixie Carter took over TNA Impact Wrestling, she was more interested in pushing people like Hulk Hogan, Ric Flair, Booker T, Kevin Nash, Kurt Angle, and more former WWE and WCW stars.
At one point, AJ Styles was by far the best wrestler in TNA Impact Wrestling. It was AJ Styles, Jerry Lynn, Low Ki, Christopher Daniels, and Samoa Joe who really lifted the company up and made it a viable alternative to the WWE.
When TNA Impact Wrestling started, AJ Styles was the face of the X-Division while Jeff Jarrett was the top man in the world title division. However, the thing that made TNA Impact Wrestling unique was that they had both champions on equal ground.
AJ Styles was a six-time X-Division champion and was the first person to ever hold the title. He then moved up and held the NWA World Championship three times when they worked with TNA Impact Wrestling. When the company split from the NWA, Styles held the TNA world title twice. That gave Styles 11 singles title reigns with the biggest belts in the company.
He also held the tag team titles six times with partners like Kurt Angle, Christopher Daniels, Jerry Lynn, Abyss, and Tyson Tomko. He was hugely successful in the company but then Dixie Carter came along and eventually pushed AJ Styles out.
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Luckily, AJ Styles rebounded and that led to his arrival in the WWE. For many years, fans dreamed of the time that AJ Styles would come to the WWE with dream matches thrown around for well over 10 years. It seemed like it would never happen.
The NXT and the success of various indie wrestlers there made it seem like AJ Styles could finally get his chance in the WWE. He went to NJPW and won the IWGP title twice – the same title that Brock Lesnar once held. It was finally time, and with his confidence back, AJ Styles arrived in the WWE and took the world by storm.
[Featured Image by WWE]