AJ Styles has specifically named Roman Reigns as a "big part of the reason" why his WWE career took off when he joined in 2016.
Despite having name recognition amongst hardcore wrestling fans as an "indy darling" (his words), Styles wasn't sure if the casual WWE audience would accept him as a top star. He believes the company made things easy for him when they programmed AJ opposite Roman at both Payback and Extreme Rules early in his run.
AJ has recently watched both bouts back, and he couldn't believe just how good they were. That, to him, wasn't all on AJ Styles; Roman upheld his end of the bargain and played his role perfectly. It's pretty hard to argue that.
Styles admits he used fan frostiness towards Reigns as a tool to make their matches even better. By psychologically twisting the knife and pointing out that most online didn't like Roman, AJ was able to create some sort of 'WWE vs. the world' scenario that really resonated.
The current Intercontinental Champion isn't sure his WWE career would have soared to the heights it has without Reigns.
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