In terms of debut years in WWE, it's hard to think of many wrestlers who have (deservingly) risen to the top of the card so quickly and effectively.
But how about 2017? Is there anybody on the indies or in Japan or who could pull off a similar feat if they sign with WWE next year?
While we'd love to see the likes of Matt Sydal (aka Evan Bourne), Chris Hero (aka Kassius Ohno), Zack Sabre Jr and Kota Ibushi sign full-time deals to return to WWE in 2017, there is an absolute wealth of other talent who have yet to be given the opportunity to even step foot in a WWE ring.
Although we're not sure anybody else could become a WWE champion quite as quickly as AJ, we reckon these 10 wrestlers could have tremendous 2017's if WWE gives them the opportunity.
10. Jay Lethal
By all accounts, Jay Lethal has been on the WWE's radar for quite some time now.
Over an impressive 15 year career, Lethal has had great runs in TNA, ROH and now NJPW, and it is something of a surprise that Lethal has yet to pop up in either WWE or NXT, especially given the number of his peers who are now making waves in both promotions.
There aren't many wrestlers who've been able to reinvent themselves as well as Lethal either; from the 'Black Machismo' phase in TNA to 'The House of Truth' stable in ROH. If given the same freedom in NXT or WWE, there's no doubt that Lethal could capture the imagination of a wider audience.
At 31-years-old, Lethal is very much in the prime of his career and as a veteran of the business who is still able to pull off incredible moves in the ring and tell great stories, he could have a similar impact on the main roster as the similarly experienced AJ Styles.