AJ Styles took to his Mixer stream on Thursday to address the rumors that had swirled around him when he was moved from Monday Night Raw to Friday Night SmackDown in May. While doing so, he also called out former Raw executive director Paul Heyman, suggesting that he and his close friends, former WWE superstars Karl Anderson and Luke Gallows, think of him as a dishonest person.
As quoted by WrestlingNews.co, Styles’ most recent Mixer stream featured him discussing the rumors that he changed brands two months ago because he was “being bullied.” The 43-year-old said that those allegations were the “dumbest thing” he has ever heard, adding that he would have handled the situation himself if he was upset over getting bullied, as opposed to requesting a move from Raw to SmackDown.
Styles also commented on a June 13 post from Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer, where he wrote on the publication’s forum that the current Intercontinental Champion blamed Heyman for Anderson and Gallows’ release and might have felt he didn’t do enough to convince WWE chairman Vince McMahon to retain them. The “Phenomenal One” likewise denied these rumors as he went on a brief tirade about Heyman, one that included a reference to his time as the owner and head booker of the now-defunct Extreme Championship Wrestling in the 1990s.
“I’ll give you a snippet of what me, Gallows and Anderson already know. He’s a liar, now you know. I’m sure you’ve heard that before if you go back to his ECW days, you’ll hear that. He’s a bold-faced liar. That’s my take on that.”
Styles then suggested that he’ll let Gallows and Anderson comment on the issue themselves.
In conclusion, Styles said that he feels WWE has been treating him right and that he understands why the company had to release so many wrestlers in April, including Gallows and Anderson. While he said he would have handled the matter differently, he still expressed hope that his friends would find success outside of WWE.
Although Heyman has yet to comment on the aforementioned rumors, reports from as far back as January suggested that he was already considering moving Styles to SmackDown at the soonest possible opportunity. As previously noted by The Inquisitr, Heyman supposedly didn’t have any noteworthy plans at that time for Styles, who was then utilized mainly as a mid-card wrestler despite his status as the leader of The O.C., a villainous stable that also featured Gallows and Anderson.