Throughout the course of his career, AJ Styles has proven that he’s one of the greatest wrestling talents in the world. During that time, he’s also had a number of complaints from multiple talents throughout different promotions that have issues with his in-ring style and say he works “too stiff.” That has led to rumors of the Styles Clash to be banned due to it being dangerous and causing injuries, but is that going to happen? This kind of talk has brought about comments from someone that knows a thing or two about different ring styles, and that’s Jim Ross.
Anyone that has watched Styles during his two-and-a-half months in WWE has noticed that he has used the Styles Clash finishing maneuver very sparingly. He’ll use the Calf Crusher (Killer) submission hold or the Flying Forearm to finish off his opponents.
One could be led to believe that the Styles Clash has been banned by WWE, or he’s been told to only use it on special occasions. In Early March, it was rumored that the move had been banned entirely, but he has used it since then.
Who said the styles clash was banned?
— AJStyles.Org (@AJStylesOrg) March 3, 2016
It’s been said before that his finishing maneuver isn’t the only issue, as other wrestlers believe that Styles works “too stiff” in the ring. After his match against Sami Zayn this week on Monday Night Raw, the talk about his work has come up again and it was brought to the attention of former WWE announcer Jim Ross.
Jim Ross actually has touched on those rumors on his blog and is letting the world know that some things should be better left out of public discussions. He has been asked about Zayn on the WWE main roster and Styles working too stiff with his opponents.
“Zayn is a main eventer in waiting and he’s likely not going to be waiting long. Talented, dedicated pro. BTW working stiff isn’t a crime but working in a careless manner is. Don’t believe all that you read or ‘hear.'”
Rumors always fly around, and there have been no reports straight from any WWE talent that has said Styles is working too stiff in the ring. There was speculation that Styles had gotten heat for a match he had with The Miz back in February, according to Sportsrageous. The Miz had one of his teeth knocked out by a spinning back fist from Styles, and all of a sudden, Styles was “too stiff” in the ring again.
After that incident, Styles was actually asked by 97.9/105.5 KISS FM’s KISS KREW about whether he got heat or not, and he denied there being any issues and actually praised The Miz.
“Let me tell you something, Miz is one of the toughest cats I’ve ever been in the ring with. He may not come across that way, but he is. He’s one tough dude and you’ve got to respect a guy for hanging in there after getting his tooth knocked out.”
If he’s not seen as being “too stiff” though, why does it truly seem that AJ Styles is using the Styles Clash a lot less often than he used to in previous promotions?
In 2014, Styles was in a match with Yoshi Tatsu in New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW) and the finish of the match was quite frightening. Styles set up Tatsu for the Styles Clash, delivered it, and it was botched to the point where Tatsu landed on the back and top of his head.
Yoshi Tatsu ended up having his neck broken and he was out of action for 18 months, only recently returning to the ring.
There was another incident in 2014 where a British wrestler named Lionheart also had his neck broken in a match with Styles. The injury happened due to a botched Styles Clash, and Lionheart has often spoken publicly about having the move banned throughout all of professional wrestling.
Now, Styles is in WWE and he’s in a promotion where he could fight a larger selection of wrestlers, and anything could happen. Danger exists in every single move of professional wrestling, and something can go wrong at any time.
AJ Styles is one of the most talented wrestlers in the entire world. He’s won championships in just about every promotion possible. He’s challenging for the WWE World Heavyweight Title. Is he too stiff in the ring?. Professional wrestling is a dangerous sport and anything is possible at any time, but Styles obviously knows his craft well enough to get to where he is.
[Image via WWE]