Arn Anderson On How AJ Styles’ WWE Debut Should Have Culminated In A Royal Rumble Win
Photo Credit: Bill Pritchard
For many, AJ Styles has to be one of the biggest surprise entrants in Royal Rumble history as “The Phenomenal One” first came sauntering out on the WWE PPV stage in 2016 as entry number three.
Styles’ WWE debut happened to be apart of the extensive tenure Arn Anderson had as an agent for the company. In the most recent episode of ARN with Conrad Thompson, “The Enforcer” was asked if he was surprised at the massive reaction for Styles?
“Nope. There are other things in this world than WWE and AJ Styles had had a tremendous career up until this point. Been around the world and gained his notoriety and had gotten over universally and when he came out, it was one of those things that you thought you might never see and were a little down about that and all of a sudden you do get it. Everybody’s not on the Internet, everybody’s not on social media, everybody doesn’t know he was gonna be there of your audience and when you’re sitting at home on your couch and you did not have a clue and you hadn’t heard a word, out come AJ Styles: that’s why I buy the Rumble. There is your selling point for the Rumble. ‘What’s going to happen during the course through this thing that’s going to make my teeth fall out and that was one of them.”
Triple H ultimately became the winner of The Rumble match that year and in turn, was given the WWE Championship after Vince McMahon had Roman Reigns defend his title in 30-man frenzy. The storyline happened to be underwhelming for many that year and Conrad pitched the “what if” to Arn about Styles winning the whole damn sha-bang.
“It would have been incredible and it would have sure helped you on that path of getting Roman of where he needed to be which was years long struggle. You see where he is right now? Go back to our first conversation about Roman whenever that was, you and I. What did I tell you he should be, who did I tell you he really was and where we were really going with him. Boy, now we walk into WrestleMania Roman Reigns challenging him for the title. Roman would have failed at the Rumble, right? AJ Styles would have won, now Roman is the challenger. Don’t you put him in a position to come out of that thing a heel?”
(Transcription credit should go to @DominicDeAngelo of WrestleZone)
Check out the complete recap of the 2016 Royal Rumble with Arn and Conrad below: