Allen Neal Jones (born June 2, 1977), better known by his ring name A.J. Styles is an American professional wrestler currently signed with WCW where he is in his first reign as WCW Champion.
Styles was previously well known for his time with Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (TNA) between 2002 and 2010. After this Styles would sign a one year contract with the WWE. In mid 2011 Styles would return to TNA and would stay until December 2011 before leaving the company again and re-signing with the WWE.
Styles is an eight-time World Heavyweight Champion, having held the NWA World Heavyweight Championship three times, the IWGP Heavyweight Championship twice, the TNA World Heavyweight Championship twice and the WCW Championship once. He was also the inaugural TNA X Division Champion, a title he has held six times. Styles has also won the Television Championship twice, during which he also held it during its phases as the Legends Championship and the Global Championship. Styles is also a decorated tag team wrestler, having been a thirteen-time World Tag Team Champion in his career - winning the NWA World Tag Team Championship four times, the TNA World Tag Team Championship twice, the WWE SD Tag Team Championship twice, and four reigns with the WWE World Tag Team Championship.
With having won the TNA X Division, NWA World Tag Team, and NWA World Heavyweight Championships, Styles was the first to complete the TNA Triple Crown Championship. Styles would later complete the Triple Crown three more times, making him the only man to complete it more than once. His victory over Booker T for the TNA Legends (now Television) Championship made him the first man to have ever won the TNA Grand Slam Championship, which he has done twice.
Also, he is the only wrestler in TNA to have held every male championship owned and sanctioned by TNA at any point during the company's history. All totaled, he has won 18 championships in TNA. Styles has also had success in the WWE as well; with being a five-time Tag Team Champion, and a two-time X-Division Champion.
After a near three month hiatus from television, Styles made his return to the WWE on the September 7, 2013 episode of Smackdown and for the first time since 2009 became a member of the Smackdown roster.
In 2020, Styles would sign with WCW after it was brought back by Shane McMahon and would go onto become the first-ever WCW Champion since it's re-emergence.
- 1 Early life
- 2 Professional wrestling career
- 2.1 Total Nonstop Action Wrestling
- 2.1.1 Debut (2002)
- 2.1.2 NWA World Heavyweight Champion (2003–2004)
- 2.1.3 X Division (2004–2005)
- 2.1.4 Teaming with Christopher Daniels (2005–2006)
- 2.1.5 Christian's Coalition (2006–2008)
- 2.1.6 TNA Frontline (2008–2009)
- 2.1.7 TNA World Heavyweight Champion (2009–2010)
- 2.1.8 Fortune and Departure (2010–2011)
- 2.2 World Wrestling Entertainment / WWE
- 2.3 Return to TNA
- 2.4 Return to WWE
- 2.5 New Japan Pro Wrestling (2014–2015)
- 2.6 Second return to WWE (2015)
- 2.7 World Championship Wrestling (2020–present)
- 2.1 Total Nonstop Action Wrestling
- 3 Other media
- 4 Personal life
- 5 In wrestling
- 6 Championships and accomplishments
Jones discussed his harsh childhood in the DVD Phenomenal: The Best of A.J. Styles: Volume 2, where he talks about growing up in poverty with an abusive and alcoholic father. He entered wrestling school because his friends were doing it, to find out that he was a natural at the sport.
Jones attended college in Anderson, South Carolina, on a partial wrestling scholarship after graduating from Johnson High School in Gainesville, Georgia, class of 1996.
During the early years of his professional wrestling career, Jones worked an assortment of jobs on the weekends to supplement his income, including delivering water and driving.
Professional wrestling career
Total Nonstop Action Wrestling
In May 2002, Styles was signed to a non-exclusive contract by Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (TNA) and dubbed "The Phenomenal" A.J. Styles (originally coined by NWA Wildside commentator Dan "The Dragon" Wilson). He appeared on the first weekly TNA pay-per-view, teaming with Jerry Lynn and Low-Ki and losing to The Flying Elvises (Jorge Estrada, Sonny Siaki and Jimmy Yang). The following week, on June 26, Styles defeated Lynn, Low-Ki and Psicosis in a double elimination match to become the first ever TNA X Division Champion. He won a second title on the third TNA pay-per-view, teaming with Lynn and defeating Lenny Lane and Bruce in the finals of a tournament for the vacant NWA World Tag Team Championship. Styles successfully defended both his titles in the following weeks, but began to bicker with the veteran Lynn during their matches together. On August 7 Styles lost the X Division title to Low-Ki in a three way dance also involving Lynn. The following week, he and Lynn fought Ron Killings and Jeff Jarrett to a no-contest, and the Tag Team titles were held-up as a result. The following week, he and Lynn fought one another in a Falls Count Anywhere match (which was won by Lynn), a No Disqualification match (which was won by Styles) and a ten-minute Iron Man match, which ended in a draw after both men scored three pinfalls. On August 28, Low-Ki defended the X Division Championship against Lynn and Styles in a ladder match and lost his title to Lynn. Recruiting Mortimer Plumtree and Sonny Siaki as allies, Styles continued to feud with Lynn in successive weeks. On October 23, he defeated Syxx-Pac for the X Division Championship, thus becoming a two-time champion. He lost the title to Lynn a second time on November 6 and tried unsuccessfully to regain it throughout the remainder of the year.
NWA World Heavyweight Champion (2003–2004)
In 2003, Styles began focusing on the NWA World Heavyweight Championship. After defeating David Flair on January 15 to become the number one contender, Styles recruited the help of Larry Zbyszko and associated himself with Vince Russo's Sports Entertainment Xtreme faction. Styles faced NWA World Heavyweight Champion Jeff Jarrett on February 19 but was defeated. In the course of the match, Styles became a fan favorite, attacking S.E.X. as they tried to interfere on his behalf because he did not want to win in that manner.
Styles formed a new tag team with D'Lo Brown in April 2003. During their time together, Styles learned the frog splash (Art Barr version) from Brown, and Brown likewise picked up Styles' suicide plancha. The tag team amicably disbanded on May 28 so that both men could pursue the NWA World Heavyweight Championship once again. They fought one another on June 4 in a number one contendership match which was won by Styles, and on June 11, Styles faced Jarrett and Raven in a three-way match for the Heavyweight Championship. Styles won the match and the title (becoming the first TNA Triple Crown winner in the process) after Vince Russo entered the ring and struck Jarrett with a guitar, then celebrated with Russo following his victory, thus becoming a villain once again. Throughout July 2003, Styles successfully defended his title in matches against Brown. Throughout the remainder of his reign, he defeated a myriad selection of opponents before losing the title to Jarrett on October 22. Following his loss, Styles reverted to being a fan favorite, while Jarrett became a villain. Despite Jarrett's demand that Styles return to the X Division, Styles continued to pursue the World Heavyweight Championship. On November 12, he teamed with Sting to defeat Jarrett and Lex Luger. Styles faced Jarrett for the Heavyweight Championship on December 3, but lost following interference from Kid Kash.
Styles feuded with Jeff Jarrett and Abyss throughout January, and on February 4, 2004 after Styles demanded a title shot, Jarrett's ally Don Callis forced him to team with Abyss in a match with the NWA World Tag Team Champions, Kevin Northcutt and Legend. Abyss hindered Styles's efforts before abandoning him completely. Styles, however, defeated both of his opponents, thus becoming a two-time NWA World Tag Team Champion with Abyss as his partner. The following week, Styles defeated Abyss in a match for both tag team titles by disqualification after Jarrett interfered. His victory was overturned by Callis, leading to another match the following week which was won by Abyss after Lex Luger interfered, thus granting Abyss control of both titles. Abyss and Styles continued to feud, and on March 17 Abyss defeated Styles to become the number one contender to the NWA World Heavyweight Championship.
On April 21, Chris Harris, who was scheduled to face Jarrett in a title match that night, was attacked by Raven. As a result, Vince Russo, by now the TNA Director of Authority, selected Styles to face Jarrett in his place in a steel cage match. When Jarrett tried to hit Styles with his guitar, Russo tried to stop him through the cage, allowing Styles to get up and shatter the guitar mid-swing with a Pelé kick. Styles pinned Jarrett to become a two-time NWA World Heavyweight Champion. He successfully defended the title in matches with Ron Killings, Raven and Chris Harris, and on May 19 he defended against all three men in a four-way title match. Styles lost his title to Killings after Jarrett interfered in the match, hitting him with a guitar.
X Division (2004–2005)
Styles returned to the X Division shortly thereafter, winning a four-way match to become the number one contender to the X Division Championship on the June 4 episode of TNA Impact!. On June 9, he defeated Frankie Kazarian to become a three-time X Division Champion. In the following weeks, Styles feuded with Kid Kash and Dallas, while successfully defending his title in matches with Kazarian and Mr. Águila. An additional match on June 23 with the debuting Jeff Hardy was interrupted by Kash and Dallas. On July 28, he defended the title against Kazarian and Michael Shane in an Ultimate X match. After Kash struck Styles with a crutch, Shane and Kazarian simultaneously retrieved the belt and became co-X Division Champions. After several abortive attempts to regain the title, Styles fought Kash in a number of matches, culminating on September 8 in a tables match which was won by Styles. In October he began feuding with Petey Williams, by now the TNA X Division Champion, and on November 7 at Victory Road, the first monthly pay-per-view held by TNA, Styles challenged Williams for the X Division Championship. During the weeks preceding the match, Styles even went as far as to use Williams' own finisher, the Canadian Destroyer, after Williams himself performed the Styles Clash on others. Williams retained his title with the help of his manager, Scott D'Amore. Later that night, Jeff Jarrett retained the NWA World Heavyweight Championship in a ladder match with Jeff Hardy after Scott Hall and Kevin Nash interfered in the match. Following the bout, the trio proclaimed themselves to be the "Kings of Wrestling" and issued an open challenge to the rest of the TNA roster. Several wrestlers charged the ring in response to the challenge, including the 3Live Kru (Ron Killings, Konnan, and B.G. James), Randy Savage, and Styles.
At Final Resolution on January 16, 2005 Styles won the X Division Championship for a fourth time in an Ultimate X match, defeating Chris Sabin and the reigning champion, Petey Williams. On the January 21 episode of Impact!, Christopher Daniels accused Styles of "ducking him" (Styles and Daniels had never fought one another in a singles match in TNA). After Daniels challenged Styles to a match at the next monthly TNA pay-per-view, TNA Director of Authority Dusty Rhodes announced that Styles and Daniels would fight that day, with Daniels receiving a title shot if Styles could not defeat him within ten minutes. Daniels lasted ten minutes and subsequently faced Styles in a thirty-minute Iron Man match for the X Division Championship at Against All Odds in which ended in a draw with both men having scored a single pinfall. Rhodes restarted the match with "sudden death" rules, and Styles defeated Daniels to retain his title. The feud between Styles and Daniels continued, and at Destination X on March 13, Styles lost his title in an Ultimate X Challenge against Daniels, Ron Killings and Elix Skipper. Skipper eliminated Killings and Daniels eliminated Skipper, thus reducing the match to a singles contest. With the referee unconscious, Styles was able to retrieve the belt, but Daniels knocked him out with the Angel's Wings and then embraced the title belt. When the referee recovered shortly thereafter, he saw both men prone—but Daniels with the title belt—and awarded the match and the X Division Championship to Daniels.
Having lost the X Division Championship, Styles began feuding with Abyss. At Lockdown, he defeated Abyss in a steel cage match to become the number one contender to the NWA World Heavyweight Championship. Styles went on to defeat the defending champion, Jeff Jarrett, at Hard Justice on May 15. After Jarrett pushed the special guest referee, cage fighter, Tito Ortiz, Ortiz knocked him down with a punch, enabling Styles to hit his Spiral Tap maneuver and pin Jarrett for his third NWA World Heavyweight Championship. Styles lost the title at Slammiversary to Raven in a King of the Mountain match. Styles then returned to his perennial pursuit of the X Division Championship, entering the TNA 2005 Super X Cup Tournament, which granted the winner a shot at the X Division Championship. Styles defeated Matt Bentley in the quarter-finals and Petey Williams in the semi-finals, but lost to Samoa Joe at Sacrifice. As Christopher Daniels (the reigning X Division champion) had interfered in the match, TNA Director of Authority Larry Zbyszko added Styles to the resultant title bout. On September 11 at Unbreakable, Styles defeated Samoa Joe and Daniels in a three-way match to become the TNA X Division Champion for a fifth time. In addition to being rated a 5 Star Match by Dave Meltzer, this match also finished as the first runner up for Pro Wrestling Illustrated Match of the Year honors.
Teaming with Christopher Daniels (2005–2006)
The following month at Bound for Glory, Styles successfully defended the title against Christopher Daniels in the second thirty-minute Iron Man match between the two. The following month at Genesis, Styles successfully defended the title against Petey Williams. At the same event, Samoa Joe brutally beat on Christopher Daniels with a chair and put him out of action indefinitely. Styles then started a feud with Joe, claiming that he had broken the unwritten "code of the X Division". On December 11 at Turning Point, Styles lost the X Division Championship to Joe. After the match, Joe tried to take out Styles, until Christopher Daniels made his return and saved him. On February 12, 2006, at Against All Odds, Styles and Daniels challenged Samoa Joe for the X Division Championship in a rematch of Unbreakable. Styles lost the bout when he was given a Muscle Buster by Joe, who then pinned him to retain. Samoa Joe defended the X Division Championship against Styles and Daniels in an Ultimate X match at Destination X and lost the belt to Daniels. After Daniels lost the belt back to Samoa Joe, Styles went on to join forces with Daniels and challenge America's Most Wanted for the NWA World Tag Team Championship. After losing to America's Most Wanted in title matches on two occasions, Styles and Daniels won the NWA World Tag Team Championship at Slammiversary.
On an episode of Impact!, Styles and Daniels introduced contracts for all tag teams on the TNA roster, which sparked a rivalry with The Latin American X-Change (Homicide and Hernandez) (LAX), who signed the contracts for a match at Hard Justice which Styles and Daniels won. On the August 24 episode of Impact!, Homicide and Hernandez defeated Styles and Daniels in a Border Brawl to win the NWA World Tag Team Championship. At No Surrender Styles and Daniels defeated LAX in a Tag-Team Ultimate X match to regain the titles after Styles hit a Styles Clash on Homicide through a table allowing his tag partner Christopher Daniels to capture the hanging belts. They lost the titles back to LAX at Bound for Glory in a Six Sides of Steel match after Homicide hit the Gringo Killer on Styles as Daniels was tied up to the cage by Konnan with a coat hanger.
On the November 2 episode of Impact!, he pinned Chris Sabin to begin his sixth reign as the new X Division Champion. The match was also the quarter-finals of the Fight For The Right tournament for number one contendership to Sting's NWA World Heavyweight Championship. On the November 9 Impact!, Styles won the semi-final match but was pinned in the finals by Abyss after interference by Christian Cage (Jason Reso) and Sabin. On the November 16 episode of Impact!, the show's debut in primetime, Styles lost the TNA X Division Championship to Daniels in a 3-way match when Daniels scored the roll-up pinfall on Sabin while Styles was outside of the ring dealing with Cage. At Genesis, Styles lost to Cage. During the match, Daniels attempted to stop Cage from using a steel chair in the match, which led to Styles rolling up Cage, which Cage reversed for a roll-up of his own and the 3 count. After the match, Styles and Daniels shared harsh words, which led to Rhino coming to the ring to settle things. Styles refused to shake Daniels' hand and walked away. Styles and Daniels teamed up for the last time on the Thanksgiving Day episode of Impact!, defeating The Naturals. After the match, Rhino came out to the ring to raise both of their hands. Styles pulled his arm away, and left the ring, saying that he was tired of Rhino getting into his business. He yelled at Rhino again during an interview on Impact! to once again becoming a heel. At Turning Point Styles beat Rhino after faking a knee injury and rolling him up for the pin.
Christian's Coalition (2006–2008)
On the December 22 episode of Impact!, Styles teamed up with Samoa Joe for the first time to go against Rhino and Kurt Angle. Styles and Joe won after a roll up pin on Rhino by Styles, but Kurt Angle and Rhino continued to beat down Styles and Joe. At Final Resolution, Styles faced Rhino in a Last Man Standing match. After a Gore by Rhino, Styles decided to let Rhino win the match despite the fact that he was almost to his feet at one point. This was due to the fact that Styles saw that Rhino was setting up a table to use on him and did not want to continue. At Destination X, Styles participated in the first ever Elevation X match against Rhino. The match consisted of a 20-foot-tall (6.1 m) steel structure of an X that they used to fight each other. Styles took the fall off the Elevation X structure. On the following episode of Impact!, he tried to assault Rhino, but was unsuccessful.
It was later revealed that he was the first member of Christian Cage's team at Lockdown. At Lockdown, Team Cage was unsuccessful against Team Angle. On the May 31 episode of Impact! he defeated Tomko in a King of the Mountain qualifying match. Styles teamed up with Tomko to face Sting and Abyss at Victory Road but were defeated. At No Surrender, Styles and Tomko won a 10-tag team gauntlet match to earn a tag team title match at Bound for Glory against Team Pacman (Ron Killings and Adam "Pacman" Jones). At Bound for Glory, Styles and Tomko defeated Team Pacman for the TNA World Tag Team Championship. Styles and Tomko defeated LAX on the November 1 episode of Impact! to retain the TNA Tag Team titles. Then Styles challenged Scott Steiner to a takedown challenge, which he lost by disqualification. At Genesis, they retained against The Steiner Brothers (Scott and Rick Steiner) after hitting Rick with a low blow and then a chair shot. Later that night, Styles and Tomko cost Christian his number one contender's shot by arguing and distracting him, and they helped Kurt Angle retain his championship.
After Christian Cage accepted Angle's invitation to The Angle Alliance on the circumstance that Cage be the leader, Angle and the rest of the alliance attacked Cage, with the exception of Styles (who made an attempt to save Cage) and Tomko (who walked away up the ramp). On December 28, Styles and Tomko lost to the Motor City Machineguns (Chris Sabin and Alex Shelley) in a tag team match due to Eric Young's attempt to help Styles with his decision problems in the middle of the match. Later on the show, Styles came down to the ring to watch Booker T and Christian Cage take on Kurt Angle and Robert Roode; he was pressured to choose between Christian's or Angle's team, but could not decide before the show went off the air. At Final Resolution, he turned on Christian Cage by siding with Angle. The next week on Impact!, Styles was crowned the "Prince of Phenomenal" by Angle, which has since been incorporated into his ring introductions.
TNA Frontline (2008–2009)
On the February 14 episode of Impact! Styles, in storyline, was married to Karen Angle. The next several weeks showed videos of Karen Angle and Styles on their honeymoon, talking, getting close, and acting like a married couple. The following week, Styles came to Karen's rescue when she hit her head (she was pushed by Kurt when she came out to check on him). Karen later revealed that she wanted a separation from Kurt. Meanwhile, Styles and Tomko lost the TNA World tag Team titles to Kaz and Super Eric. With Kurt constantly accusing Styles and Karen of seeing each other despite both vehemently denying anything beyond friendship, Styles snapped and quit the Alliance. In retaliation, Tomko (after Styles teamed with Super Eric while he was out in Japan) cost Styles his King of the Mountain qualifying match against Booker T. Styles turned into a face again on the May 29 episode of Impact! after being assaulted backstage before his entrance. He then ran to the ring several minutes later to help Karen, only to be beat down by Team 3D and Kurt for the second week in a row. At Slammiversary, Styles defeated Kurt but was beat-down by Kurt and his former tag team partner Tomko after the match. The feud continued through Hard Justice, with Styles and Angle trading wins. The episode after Hard Justice, he defeated Angle for his Olympic gold medal. Styles also won the rematch ladder match the following week, thus ending the feud. Later he was asked to give Kurt back his gold medal by Jeff Jarrett, in an effort to try to mend things with Kurt.
At Bound for Glory IV, Styles faced Christian Cage and Booker T in a 3-way dance in which Booker T won after performing the axe kick from the middle rope on Cage. Shortly after that, Booker T, Kurt Angle, Kevin Nash and Sting (who had turned heel) formed the team now known as The Main Event Mafia. On the October 23 episode of Impact! Styles teamed up with Samoa Joe against Sting and Nash but came up short after Nash hit Joe with Sting's TNA World Heavyweight Championship belt. Following this, Styles and Joe were both attacked by the Main Event Mafia. On the October 30 episode of Impact!, Styles and Joe formed a faction of younger wrestlers also featuring Jay Lethal, Consequences Creed, Petey Williams, Eric Young, ODB and The Motor City Machineguns, which later would be collectively known as TNA Frontline. Later that night they were once again assaulted by the Main Event Mafia when Scott Steiner returned and joined them.
He challenged Sting at Turning Point for the TNA World Heavyweight Championship, but lost thanks to a distraction from Kurt Angle and Booker T. At the Final Resolution PPV, Styles was once again unsuccessful in capturing the TNA World Heavyweight Championship, losing in an eight-man tag team match to the Main Event Mafia.
Since then, The TNA Frontline recruited Rhino and Team 3-D into their ranks. The Frontline also had to deal with problems with The Motor City Machineguns, who showed little respect to the other members, and gang style attacks on members, such as Petey Williams, Brother Ray, and Samoa Joe, from the Mafia. On the January 22, 2009 episode of Impact! Kurt Angle vowed to end Styles' career and later that night beat Styles in a tables match, where Styles was (kayfabe) injured.
At Against All Odds, Styles returned and attacked Booker T after his defense of the TNA Legends Championship. After doing so, he stole Booker T's Legends belt, then went on a rampage of weekly consecutive backstage sneak attacks on Booker T, which ended once Booker (with Scott Steiner) goaded him into trying the same in the ring in order to get him (kayfabe) arrested. At Destination X 2009, Styles defeated Booker T to become the new TNA Legends Champion and the first TNA Grand Slam Champion. Styles defeated Booker T in an "I Quit" match for the TNA Legends Championship at Sacrifice when Jenna Morasca threw in the towel on Booker's behalf. At Slammiversary, Styles competed in the King of the Mountain match for the TNA World Heavyweight Championship, but was unsuccessful after Samoa Joe turned his back on Styles, helping Kurt Angle win, and in the process, Joe turned heel. At the Victory Road pay-per-view, Styles lost the Legends Championship to Nash via pinfall. Following the loss, Styles began a "Best of Three Series" against Matt Morgan for entry into the Heavyweight Championship match with Sting and Kurt Angle at Hard Justice. He won the first match, but lost the following two, resulting in Morgan advancing to Hard Justice.
TNA World Heavyweight Champion (2009–2010)
On the August 20 episode of Impact! Styles came to the ring to announce his retirement because of his recent setbacks, but ended up being talked out of it by Sting, who said he had chosen Styles to carry the torch after him. Styles then went on to gain his place in the No Surrender main event in a tournament on the August 27 episode of Impact! defeating Chris Sabin and Doug Williams in singles matches. On September 20, 2009, at No Surrender, Styles won the TNA World Heavyweight Championship in a five-way match against Matt Morgan, Sting, Hernandez (who was cashing in his Feast or Fired briefcase), and defending champion Kurt Angle. One month later at Bound for Glory, Styles retained his title against Sting, ending his undefeated streak at Bound for Glory in the process. in a match that was later voted the match of the year by the fans of TNA. Styles was mysteriously attacked by an anonymous assailant backstage leading him to believe it was Samoa Joe or Daniels, both of whom he faced the following month at Turning Point to retain his World Heavyweight Title in what was heavily hyped as the rematch from the Unbreakable main event, four years earlier. On the December 10 episode of Impact!, Styles successfully defended the world title against Desmond Wolfe. Later that month at Final Resolution, Styles defeated Daniels to retain the World Heavyweight Title.
On the January 4, 2010, live three hour Monday night episode of Impact!, by order of Eric Bischoff now running TNA with Hulk Hogan, Styles was forced to defend his title against Angle before Genesis; he defeated Angle in the main event, despite further interference from the unknown attacker. Styles' mystery attacker was revealed on the January 14, 2010 episode of Impact! as his former tag team partner Tomko. Later during that episode, Styles defeated Tomko in a match to retain the TNA World Heavyweight Championship. After the match, he was assaulted by Tomko; Angle came to his rescue and offered a handshake, but Styles looked to Ric Flair at the commentary table and instead just exited the ring, hinting at a possible heel turn. At Genesis, Styles turned heel and defeated Angle in a Last Chance match after hitting him with the title belt, while Ric Flair was distracting the referee. On the January 21, 2010 episode of Impact!, Flair announced that he had aligned himself with Styles and would make Styles "the New Nature Boy". On the same episode, Hulk Hogan announced that due to Ric Flair's interference in the Genesis match, Kurt Angle would get a rematch that same night, and if Flair were to interfere, Styles would be stripped of the title and awarded to Angle. During the match, Angle applied his signature move, the Ankle Lock, on Styles. Styles reversed it and applied the same move to Angle, when suddenly referee Earl Hebner, paid off by Flair, called for the bell although Angle did not submit, essentially repeating the Montreal Screwjob.
At Against All Odds Styles retained his title against Samoa Joe, with help from Flair, in a match refereed by Eric Bischoff. On the March 8 Monday night episode of Impact! Styles teamed up with Ric Flair in a tag team match, where they faced Abyss and Hulk Hogan. During this time, Styles began wearing Flair's signature style of robe to the ring and reverted to his old short trunks ring gear. Abyss won the match for his team by pinning Styles. Afterwards, the returning Jeff Hardy saved Abyss and Hogan from a beatdown at the hands of Styles, Flair and Desmond Wolfe. The following week Styles was defeated by Hardy in a non-title match. At Destination X Styles defended his title against Abyss in a match that went to No Contest, after Abyss chokeslammed Styles through the ring. On March 29, 2010, Styles became the longest reigning TNA World Heavyweight Champion in history by beating Sting's reign of 189 days as champion. The following month at Lockdown, Styles successfully defended his title against D'Angelo Dinero in a steel cage match. The following day on Impact! Styles dropped the World Heavyweight Championship to Rob Van Dam, ending his reign at 211 days.
Fortune and Departure (2010–2011)
On the May 3 episode of Impact! Styles defeated Abyss in a Monster's Ball match, and later in the night, attacked Rob Van Dam after his title match with Desmond Wolfe, and announced he was invoking his rematch clause for the TNA World Heavyweight Championship at Sacrifice. Styles invoked his rematch clause at Sacrifice, but was once again defeated by Van Dam. With Styles' recent shortcomings against Rob Van Dam, Flair adopted Kazarian as his newest protégé. Styles quickly grew jealous of Kazarian and in trying to impress his mentor, first ruined a beatdown of Flair's most recent enemy, Jay Lethal, and the following week was pinned by him in a three-way match also involving Kazarian, after which Flair ordered him to go home and think about his future. At Slammiversary VIII Styles attempted to win Flair back by defeating Lethal, but ended up on losing side again, this time in a singles match. On the following episode of Impact! Ric Flair, who had aligned himself with Styles, Desmond Wolfe, Kazarian, Robert Roode and James Storm, announced that he would reform the Four Horsemen under the new name Fourtune, stating that each of them would have to earn their spots in the group and that in order for Styles to earn his spot, he needed to become the Arn Anderson of the group. Flair, wanting peace between Styles and Kazarian, booked them in a tag team match against Samoa Joe and Rob Terry at Victory Road. The plan seemed to work as Styles and Kazarian were victorious due to outside interference from Desmond Wolfe and in the process earned themselves spots in Fourtune. On July 13 at the tapings of the July 22 episode of Impact! Styles defeated Terry to win the Global Championship, formerly known as the Legends Championship, for the second time, after some assistance from Kazarian.
The following week Styles renamed the title the TNA Television Championship. That same night Fourtune's lineup was seemingly completed with the addition of Robert Roode and James Storm as the final two members of the group. However, on the August 12 episode of Impact! Douglas Williams and Matt Morgan were added to Fourtune, as the stable attacked EV 2.0, a stable consisting of former Extreme Championship Wrestling performers. The following month at No Surrender, Styles defeated EV 2.0 leader Tommy Dreamer in a non-title "I Quit" match. In the weeks leading to Bound for Glory, the stable's name was tweaked to Fortune to represent the expansion in the number of members in the group. At Bound for Glory Styles, Kazarian, Morgan, Roode and Storm were defeated in a Lethal Lockdown match by Dreamer, Raven, Rhino, Sabu and Stevie Richards, when Styles was pinned by Dreamer. On the following episode of Impact! Fortune formed an alliance with Hulk Hogan's and Eric Bischoff's new stable, Immortal. At Turning Point Fortune defeated EV 2.0 in a ten man tag team match and, as a result, EV 2.0's Sabu was released from TNA. The following month at Final Resolution Styles lost the Television Championship to former stable mate Douglas Williams, who had turned on Fortune on the November 18 episode of Impact!. On the December 23 episode of Impact! Styles challenged Williams for the Television Championship in a 20 minute Iron Man match. The match ended in a 1–1 draw, setting up another match at Genesis, where Styles would put his spot in Fortune on the line against Williams' title. However, Styles was forced to pull out of the match, after suffering a legitimate hip injury, which was expected to sideline him for 6–8 weeks. Styles, who was replaced in the title match by Abyss, ended up interfering in the match and costing Williams the title. Following this Styles abruptly left the company choosing to sign with their rival promotion World Wrestling Entertainment.
World Wrestling Entertainment / WWE
AJ Styles made his debut in the WWE as a heel on the February 14, 2011 episode of RAW as he sided with Jeff Jarrett along with Matt Hardy, James Storm (both whom had also made the jump to WWE) and Chase Stevens. The following week on the February 21, 2011 episode of RAW now being billed as Planet Jarrett would attack CM Punk at the beginning of the show. Later that night AJ Styles teamed up with Matt Hardy to defeat the Motor City Machine Guns in a Number One Contenders Match for the World Tag Team Championships. At the No Way Out PPV on March 6, 2011 AJ Styles and Matt Hardy defeated Bryan Danielson and Raven Alexandria to become the new World Tag Team Champions. AJ would then take a couple weeks off from RAW before returning on the April 4, 2011 episode of RAW assaulting Triple H along with Matt Hardy and Alex Shelley. On the April 11, 2011 episode of RAW; Styles teamed with CM Punk to take on the team of John Morrison and Joey Mercury and suffered a loss. At Wrestlemania 27 on April 24, 2011 AJ Styles and Matt Hardy successfully defended their World Tag Team Championships in a Triple Threat Tag Team Match against Desmond Wolfe & Dolph Ziggler as well as Austin Aries and Chris Sabin.
The following week on the May 2, 2011 episode of RAW; Styles teamed up with Alex Shelley and suffered a loss to Beverly Mullins and Jimmy Rave. Later that same night AJ Styles was found unconscious backstage after apparently being assaulted. Styles returned on the May 16, 2011 episode of RAW as he confronted Shawn Michaels about the assault on both him and Matt Hardy two weeks prior. Styles returned to ring action on the May 30, 2011 episode of RAW teaming with Planet Jarrett teammates – Alex Shelley & Matt Hardy to defeat Desmond Wolfe & Evan Bourne in a Handicap Match. That same night Jeff Jarrett introduced the two newest members of Planet Jarrett; Scott Hall and X-Pac.
On the June 6, 2011 episode of RAW; AJ Styles confronted Jeff Jarrett about recruiting Scott Hall and X-Pac into Planet Jarrett, questioning it. Some words would be exchanged and it looked as though there was some tension between Styles and Jarrett however Jarrett would try and patch things up by offering Styles a shot at Shawn Michaels' WWE Championship to which he accepted. Just prior to the WWE Championship match between Michaels and Styles; Hardy talked with his partner and the two discussed the match as well as not being pleased with Jarrett bringing in Hall and X-Pac. Styles then told Hardy to help him win the WWE Championship and when he did he would give him the first title opportunity to which Hardy agreed. Later that night in the match Styles seemed to have the match won when Matt Hardy made his way down to the ring to attack Michaels with a steel chair however he decided against it and ultimately left the ring which enabled Michaels to roll up Styles and retain the WWE Championship.
The following week on the June 13, 2011 episode of RAW; Styles and Hardy teamed up against John Morrison and Joey Mercury however the match would be ruled a no contest after AJ Styles turned on Matt Hardy hitting him with the World Tag Team Championship belt blaming him for costing him the WWE Championship. At the Over the Limit PPV on June 26, 2011 – Styles and Hardy lost the World Tag Team Championships to D-Generation X after Matt Hardy walked out on Styles.
On the July 4, 2011 episode of RAW; Styles called out Matt Hardy and challenged him to a match however Matt Hardy wouldn't bite and would ignore Styles' challenge. The next week on the July 11, 2011 episode of RAW – Styles confronted Hardy backstage which erupted into an all out brawl between the two with AJ managing to get the upper hand. At the Unforgiven PPV on July 24, 2011; Styles was defeated by Matt Hardy in a Number One Contenders Triple Threat Match also involving Chris Sabin. Shortly after this AJ's contract with WWE expired and he opted not to re-sign.
Return to TNA
Styles made his return to TNA as a face in a match against Christopher Daniels on the September 1 episode of Impact Wrestling, where Daniels managed to pick up the win. After the match, Daniels refused to shake hands with Styles. On the September 22 episode of Impact Wrestling, Daniels refused to give Styles a rematch, which eventually led to a brawl between the two. When the two were finally separated from each other by Kazarian, Daniels kicked Styles in the groin, completing his heel turn. Two weeks later it was announced that, at Daniels' request, he and Styles would face each other at Bound for Glory in an "I Quit" match.
On October 16 at Bound for Glory, Styles defeated Daniels in the "I Quit" match, but was after the match attacked by him. On the November 10 episode of Impact Wrestling, Styles defeated Daniels in a singles match, after Rob Van Dam prevented Daniels from using a screwdriver. At the end of the evening, Styles confronted new TNA World Heavyweight Champion Bobby Roode, who had turned on Fortune and won the title from James Storm the previous week, and challenged him to a match for the title.
On November 13 at Turning Point, Styles failed in his attempt to regain the World Heavyweight Championship from Roode. The following month at Final Resolution, Styles and Roode wrestled to a 3–3 draw in a 30 minute Iron Man match. Styles and Roode wrestled a sudden death overtime period on the following episode of Impact Wrestling, where Roode managed to retain his title. During the following episodes of Impact Wrestling, Styles and Kazarian, the last two members of Fortune, made it to the finals of the Wild Card Tournament, losing to Samoa Joe and Magnus after Kazarian turned on Styles. Following this Styles would once again depart from TNA after creative differences.
Return to WWE
In late December reports surfaced that Styles had signed a new contract with WWE following his departure from TNA. On the January 23 episode of RAW – Styles made his return to RAW as a face as he proceeded to warn new WWE Champion, The Miz that he was gunning for the WWE Championship. Later that night AJ Styles would defeat Kevin Nash to qualify for the Royal Rumble Match. On February 5 at Royal Rumble; Styles was unsuccessful in winning the Royal Rumble match instead it would be his former tag team partner, Matt Hardy who would win. On the February 13 episode of RAW, Styles proceeded to announce his intentions of challenging for the Intercontinental Championship, saying he was going to prove he deserved a shot at the title by defeating Tyson Kidd. Styles would battle with Kidd and the two put on a very competitive match until Tyson Kidd managed to counter the Styles Clash into a roll up while also using the ropes as leverage unseen by the referee.
On March 4 at Cyber Sunday, Styles competed in a Gauntlet Battle Royal for the Number One Contendership for the WWE Intercontinental Championship and would last until the final two before being beaten by Shawn Spears. Following this Styles was entered into an on-screen rivalry with former protégé – Michael Riley on the March 12 episode of RAW, where the two had a confrontation backstage. On the March 19 episode of RAW; Styles teamed with Johnny Curtis & David Otunga and suffered a loss to the team of Dolph Ziggler, Rylan Jett & Edge after Michael Riley interfered and landed a low blow on AJ Styles. Later that night Styles would call out Riley and the two would get into a brawl before it being broken up by security. A week later the feud got personal when Riley involved Styles' children.
Ignition; WWE Tag Team Champion (2012–2013)
- Main article: Ignition
Later that night Styles failed to qualify for the Money in the Bank Ladder Match. On the April 2 episode of RAW, Styles confronted Riley once again and yet another brawl ensued between the two which lead to Styles challenging Riley to a match. The following episode of RAW, Styles along with Travis Kooper won the Feast or Famine Match. Both ended up with the briefcase containing the shot at the WWE Tag Team Championships at Wrestlemania. The week before Wrestlemania it looked as though Kooper and Riley were going to attack Styles however Travis turned on Riley thus reverting back to a fan favourite. On April 22 at Wrestlemania 28 both Travis and Styles won the WWE Tag Team Championships defeating the team of Alex Shelley and Chris Sabin.
Despite winning the Tag Team Championships at Wrestlemania, Kooper was moved to Smackdown leaving Styles on RAW. The RAW after Wrestlemania, Styles defeated Damien Sandow in a quick one on one match. The next week AJ Styles entered into the King of the Ring Tournament however he would be eliminated in the first round by eventual winner Clark Gabriel. Later that week Styles appeared on Smackdown with Kooper as the two would talk about their upcoming title defense against the teams of Dolph Ziggler & Tyson Kidd, Aaron Eden & Elias Ezra and CM Punk & Mr. Anderson. Ignition would lose the Tag Team Championships to Eden and Ezra on May 27 at Extreme Rules. That week on Smackdown, Ignition defeated the team of Mr. Anderson and CM Punk in a close contest.
On the June 11 episode of RAW, Styles was able to get a win over Batista and Daniel Bryan. On June 24 at the UK exclusive Invasion PPV, Ignition unsuccessfully challenged for the WWE Tag Team Championships. Shortly after this the two decided to put Ignition on a bit of a hiatus and focus on their solo careers.
Styles unsuccessfully tried to become the Number One Contender for the Intercontinental Championship on the July 2 episode of RAW. The following episode of RAW, Styles suffered another loss this time losing to Dolph Ziggler. On July 22 at Unforgiven, Styles teamed up with Chris Sabin to defeat Austin Aries and Chase Humphrey in the pre-show match before the PPV. The next night on RAW, Styles defeated newcomer Bill Liden. Over the next two episode of RAW, Styles inadvertently became involved in the rivalry between girlfriend, Torrie Wilson and her former best friend Stacy Keibler.
On the August 13 episode of RAW, Styles attempted to play peacemaker between Stacy Keibler and Torrie Wilson. Styles would force Keibler off Wilson only for Keibler to go right back after Wilson only to be clotheslined by Styles thus turning him heel in the process. After attacking Keibler, Randy Orton ran down to the ring as both him and Orton started to brawl. Styles would accompany Torrie to ringside for her match against Stacy Keibler at SummerSlam. Styles would even interfere in the match as well managing to catch Stacy with the Pelé. However Stacy would still be able to get the win over Torrie. Following the match Styles would fall to an RKO from Randy Orton who happened to be in Stacy's corner.
The following night on RAW, Styles lost to Kurt Angle. On the September 17 episode of RAW, Styles entered the Hard Ten Tournament and defeated MVP in the first round. That same night there was an altercation between Torrie Wilson and Stacy Keibler in the parking lot where Stacy was nearly run over by a car. A week later Stacy was looking for answers and managed to get the footage from the week prior of her almost being run down and the culprit was revealed to be AJ Styles. Later that night Styles defeated Randy Orton to advance to the finals of the Hard Ten Tournament. In the finals of the tournament Styles was defeated by Ciaran O'Donnell. Later that night Stacy attacked Torrie backstage with a steel chair further igniting the rivalry.
A week later while Stacy Keibler was talking with Jan, the make up lady she got a message to meet Torrie in the parking lot which was nothing more than a set up as Torrie got some retribution on Stacy attacking her from behind with a chair and accepted her challenge. On the following episode of RAW, Stacy once again was having a conversation with Jan, trying to get her to relax about Torrie's threat towards her. Stacy left the locker room which proved to be a mistake as the locker room door was closed and locked and Torrie was revealed to be in the locker room alone with Jan and looked as though she was going keep her word and assault Jan.
Randy Orton arrived on the scene and tried to get the door open himself however both him and Stacy were attacked from behind by AJ Styles. It was revealed to be a rouse as Torrie didn't end up laying a finger on Jan after all. On October 28 at the Halloween Havoc pre-show, AJ Styles defeated Cody Rhodes and Sting in a Triple Threat.
On the November 9 episode of Smackdown, Styles made an appearance and talked with his long-time friend and tag team partner, Travis Kooper. Styles brought up how successful they were as a team and wants to end the year on the high note and brings up them going after the WWE Tag Team Championships and re-igniting the tag team division once again. Kooper agreed, but with one condition and that's that Styles stops getting involved in the on-going rivalry between Torrie Wilson and Stacy Keibler and stops attempting to humiliate Keibler at every turn. Styles agrees to the condition much to the chagrin of Torrie thus hinting at a possible face turn. A few days later on the November 12 episode of RAW; Styles came down to the ring and looked conflicted with his decision to reform Ignition with Kooper and said that he was focused and at the same time he was going to make sure Torrie didn't get hurt thus hinting at possible dissolution between Kooper and Styles. Later that week on the November 16 episode of Smackdown, Ignition successfully reunited and defeated the team of Michael Noventa and Ted DiBiase known collectively as Legacy Inc.
Styles would suffer a loss at the Survivor Series PPV on November 25, 2012; coming up just short as both him and Edge were the last two eliminated by eventual winner Vampiro. The following week on RAW there were more signs of dissolution between Styles and Kooper when Travis confronted Styles, surprising him and gave him an ultimatum; either continue to help Torrie or Ignition is finished. This brought out Torrie Wilson who disputed what Travis was trying to do saying that it wasn't fair to AJ at all and that he shouldn't have to choose between her and continuing to team with him. However Torrie couldn't convince Kooper who ended up just leaving the ring and told AJ it was up to him now. Later that night; Styles and Wilson were able to defeat Stacy Keibler and Daniel Bryan in a tag team match which saw Styles hit Bryan with the Styles Clash for the win.
On the November 7 episode of Smackdown Styles made an appearance and was seen in the crowd during Travis Kooper's scheduled match against Jimmy Jacobs. Following the match Styles simply stood up by the stairs just watching yet again and Kooper noticed this thus showing even more signs of turmoil between the two friends. However later that night Daniel Riley would sucker Kooper out to the ring only to have him attacked from behind by Jack Evans however before much damage could be done to Kooper, Styles came to his aid, thus making his decision and in the process completing his face turn.
On the final RAW of 2012, Styles defeated The Miz and Road Dogg in a triple threat match earning a spot in the WWE Championship Elimination Chamber match at New Years Revolution, which was won by Ciaran O'Donnell. On the February 11 episode of RAW, AJ Styles and his tag team partner, Travis Kooper defeated the team of Edge & Christian and Team Hell No to win the vacant WWE Tag Team Championships for the second time together and the third time for Styles. Styles would compete in the Royal Rumble match, entering at number 23. Styles would last at least twenty minutes before being eliminated by Jeff Hardy. AJ and Travis continued their winning ways on both the March 4 episode of RAW defeating Beer Money (James Storm and Bobby Roode) and the March 11 episode defeating the team of Tyler Chandler and Edge. At the Cyber Sunday PPV, Ignition successfully defended their Tag Team Championships defeating the team of Sheamus and Jessie Godderz. On the April 1 episode of RAW Styles and James Storm briefly reunited Fortune however they were defeated by Daniel Bryan and Christian.
On the April 15 episode of RAW Styles defeated Braden Walker, before being announced as one of the ten participants in the Money in the Bank Ladder Match at Wrestlemania XXIX. Styles would be unsuccessful in the Money in the Bank Ladder match with Shawn Michaels winning it and ending his undefeated streak at Wrestlemania. After this Styles would start a bit of a losing streak, on the April 29 episode of RAW when he teamed with James Storm and Daniel Bryan losing to the team of Ciaran O'Donnell, Jeff Hardy & Shawn Michaels. A week later Styles teamed up with Torrie Wilson and suffered another loss this time to the team of Daniel Bryan & Michelle McCool. On the May 13 episode of RAW, Styles and James Storm once again reformed Fortune along with Travis Kooper when they suffered a loss to Shane Helms, Matt Hardy & Daniel Bryan.
The Lone Wolf (2013)
Ignition lost the WWE Tag Team Championships to Age of the Fall (Seth Rollins & Jimmy Jacobs) on June 2, 2013 at Extreme Rules after Styles walked out on Kooper, dissolving Ignition turning heel in the process and ending their reign at 111 days. After this Styles took a bit of a sabbatical from the company as he was going through some personal struggles. Styles would make his return on the September 7, 2013 episode of Smackdown sporting a beard, unkempt hair and all-black attire and left the fans with more questions than answers. A week later, Styles explained that he realized something about the wrestling business, stating that it was merely a job. He emphasized it by saying he was only in it for the money now and that he needed to take care of one thing, that being his family. He also said that this was no place for a hero. Styles would go on to lose his return match to Chris Jericho. Styles would later be taken off television once again.
New Japan Pro Wrestling (2014–2015)
On March 27, 2014, it was reported that Styles had signed a contract with New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW). Styles' debut came on April 6 at Invasion Attack 2014, where he attacked IWGP Heavyweight Champion Kazuchika Okada after his match and laid him out with the Styles Clash. Styles then challenged Okada to a title match, before revealing himself as the newest member of Bullet Club, establishing himself as a heel in the process. Styles wrestled his first match under a New Japan contract on May 3 at Wrestling Dontaku 2014, where he defeated Okada with help from Yujiro Takahashi to become the new IWGP Heavyweight Champion. Styles is the first Gaijin (non-Japanese) champion since Brock Lesnar won the title in 2005. On May 17, Styles made his first successful title defense in a three-way match with Okada and Michael Elgin at the NJPW/ROH co-produced War of the Worlds event in New York City. On May 25 at Back to the Yokohama Arena, Styles defeated Okada for his second successful title defense. Styles suffered his first loss in NJPW on July 21, when he was defeated by Okada in his first match in the 2014 G1 Climax tournament. Out of his nine remaining matches in the tournament, Styles lost only one, but failed to advance to the finals due to his loss against Okada in the head-to-head match. On October 13 at King of Pro-Wrestling, Styles lost the IWGP Heavyweight Championship to Hiroshi Tanahashi in his third defense, after the returning Yoshitatsu stopped Bullet Club's newest member, Jeff Jarrett, from interfering in the match.
This led to a match on November 8 at Power Struggle, where Styles defeated Yoshitatsu with help from Jarrett. After the match, Styles was confronted by Tetsuya Naito. During the match, Yoshitatsu legitimately broke his neck on a Styles Clash, leading to NJPW pushing Styles as a "killer" and the Styles Clash as a controversial maneuver. Later in the month, Styles entered the 2014 World Tag League, alongside Yujiro Takahashi. Despite a win over the reigning IWGP Tag Team Champions, Bullet Club stablemates Doc Gallows and Karl Anderson, Styles and Takahashi failed to advance from their block with a record of four wins and three losses due to losing to Kazuchika Okada and Yoshi-Hashi on the final day. Styles and Naito faced off on January 4, 2015, at Wrestle Kingdom 9 in Tokyo Dome, in a match, where Styles was victorious. The following day, Styles would insert himself back into the IWGP Heavyweight Championship picture, when he pinned Tanahashi in an eight-man tag team match, setting up a title match between the two at The New Beginning in Osaka. On February 11, Styles defeated Tanahashi to win the IWGP Heavyweight Championship for the second time. He made his first title defense on April 5 at Invasion Attack 2015, where he defeated 2015 New Japan Cup winner Kota Ibushi. Not long after this Styles would vacate the title and proceed to leave New Japan, opting to resign with WWE.
Second return to WWE (2015)
At Invasion Styles made his in-ring return to the WWE on the pre-show where he came up short in a Battle Royal that was won by Briley Pierce where the winner would main event Smackdown. On the July 9, 2015 episode of Smackdown, Styles teamed up with Adrian Neville and suffered another loss this time to Tyler Breeze & Tyson Kidd. A week later on the July 16, 2015 episode of Smackdown, Styles teamed up with Finn Bálor and former tag team partner Travis Kooper to defeat the team of Enzo Amore, Jack Swagger & James Storm. That same night prior to the match, Styles approached Kooper looking to get back on good terms and bringing up the reunion of their tag team only to be rebuffed by Kooper. A week later on the July 23, 2015 episode of Smackdown Styles teamed with Storm again as well Brad Maddox losing to the Power Shift. On the July 30, 2015 Super Smackdown Styles defeated Damien Sandow and later in the night attempted to win the WWE Hardcore Championship but would come up short as Tyson Kidd would win the title.
World Championship Wrestling (2020–present)
At WrestleMania 36, AJ Styles shocked the world when he emerged as one of the first signings of WCW which Shane McMahon had revealed that he still owned and was bringing back as direct competition to the WWE. On the debut episode of Thursday Night Nitro, Styles defeated Brian Pillman Jr. On the May 14th, 2020 episode of Nitro, Styles suffered a loss to Cody Rhodes, his first defeat since signing with WCW thanks to a distraction from CM Punk. A week later on the May 21st, 2020 episode Styles would manage to defeat Chavo Guerrero Jr. Later that night Styles would make his presence known during Punk's match with the Big Show and it appeared as though both men would come to blows before Eric Bischoff put a stop to it and revealed that it would be Styles and CM Punk competing at Slamboree to determine the first-ever WCW Heavyweight Champion. At Slamboree after a low blow unseen by the official, Styles was able to defeat Punk to become the first-ever WCW Champion. On the June 11th, 2020 episode of Nitro, Styles continued his winning ways with a win over Apollo Crews. That same night Styles would reform the OC with Gallows and Anderson.
On the June 18th, 2020 episode of Nitro, Gallows and Anderson would be unsuccessful in becoming the #1 Contenders for the WCW Tag Team Championships, before in the main event AJ Styles would defeat Scott Steiner once again continuing his winning streak. On the July 2nd, 2020 episode of Nitro, Styles would soundly defeat Elias to kick off the show before issuing a warning to the entire roster that there wasn't anybody worthy enough to face him at Bash at the Beach and implored Eric Bischoff to scour the globe for a potential challenger for him, before demanding that Gallows and Anderson face The Elite and the Dudley Boyz in a Triple Threat match where if the OC wins they get added to the WCW Tag Team Championship match at Bash at the Beach.
In 2004, TNA released Phenomenal: The Best of A.J. Styles, a DVD covering Styles' best matches. In 2007, TNA released a follow-up DVD, Phenomenal: The Best of A.J. Styles Volume 2. In addition, Ring of Honor has released two DVDs covering his early career with the company. Evolution of a Phenom: The Best of AJ Styles covers from his debut to mid-2003. The Phenomenon Continues: The Best of AJ Styles Vol. 2 picks up where the last one left off, covering from mid-2003 to his match with CM Punk at the ROH Second Anniversary Show in 2004 (his second to last match before leaving ROH in 2004). He also sat down for a shoot interview alongside Christopher Daniels for ROH's "Straight Shootin’" series.
He was also featured on MTV's Made trying to help a young high schooler become a professional wrestler alongside Taylor Wilde and The Beautiful People (Angelina Love and Velvet Sky).
He was also mentioned in the Insane Clown Posse song "Scatterbrain" off their 2007 EP, Eye of the Storm.
In 2010 Styles was ranked #1 on the Pro Wrestling Illustrated Top 500 and is the first ever TNA wrestler to top the annual chart.
In a subsequent podcast interview with Brady Hicks, a seemingly frustrated Styles said several, extremely critical things about TNA as a product, some of the company's recent decisions, and personnel moves, including their decision to have him drop the title to Rob Van Dam. Which were mostly the reasons for his departure from the company.
In 2011 Styles was featured in country singer Sarah Darling's latest music video called "Something to Do with Your Hands". In 2012, Styles with Montell Jordan, presented the award for Best Rap/Hip Hop Record of the Year to Lecrae at the 43rd annual GMA Dove Awards.
Jones was married to Wendy Jones, and have three sons, Ajay Covell Jones (born May 3, 2005), Avery Jones (born February 14, 2007) and Albey Jones (born September 15, 2009). The first child's middle name was taken from the real last name of Styles' best friend and fellow wrestler Daniel Covell, who wrestles as "Christopher Daniels".
In November 2011 it was revealed that Jones and his wife were separating. Shortly afterwards Wendy filed for divorce. In May 2012 the divorce was finalized. The separation started a custody battle between the two regarding their three children. The two have since agreed on having joint custody of their three children.
Jones is a devout Christian. He states that in his life, "It's God first and Family second."
He is an avid video game player who recently mentioned (to PowerSlam Mag) that he does not like the WWE SmackDown vs. Raw games but only the old Nintendo 64 AKI wrestling games. He has also stated that his favorite wrestling game is the Japanese Virtual Pro Wrestling 2 for the Nintendo 64. Jones also admitted on tnawrestling.com that he grew up in a poor family, something spoken of on the TNA home video release, Phenomenal: The Best of A.J. Styles Volume 2, where Styles took a camera crew around his childhood home.
Jones stated in an interview with New Zealand Pro Wrestling Journalists that his family could not afford cable television growing up and he was not able to watch professional wrestling.
Jones also has a large tattoo down the right side his body that reads "AJ 05-03-05 02-14-07 09-15-09" and represents the initials and birth dates of his three children.
Jones previously dated WWE Diva Torrie Wilson. In November 2012, the couple announced their engagement. However about a month before the wedding it was confirmed that the couple had ended their engagement and had split up for unknown reasons.
- Styles Clash (Belly-to-back inverted mat slam, sometimes from the second rope)
- Calf Crusher/Calf Killer (Calf slicer) – 2013–present
- Superman (Springboard 450° splash)
- Bloody Sunday (Lifting single underhook DDT) – 2014–present; adopted from Prince Devitt
- Brainbuster, sometimes onto the ring apron
- Discus lariat
- Fosbury Flop
- Hollow Point (Kneeling ganso bomb) – 2014–present
- Inverted STF
- Multiple DDT variations
- Cliffhanger (Crucifix hold flipped forward into a DDT)
- Phenomenon / Stylin' DDT (Springboard moonsault onto a standing opponent transitioned into an inverted)
- Multiple kick variations
- Pelé kick (Backflip)
- Multiple suplex variations
- Starmaker (High-angle belly to back)
- Styles Suplex Special (German followed into a belly to back wheelbarrow facebuster)
- Vertical lifted and dropped into a neckbreaker slam
- Over the shoulder back to belly piledriver
- Rack Bomb (Backbreaker rack dropped into a powerbomb)
- Reverse frankensteiner
- Running swinging neckbreaker
- Shooting Styles Press (Springboard shooting star plancha)
- Spine Breaker (Backbreaker followed by a gutbuster)
- Springboard flying forearm smash
- Standing somersault senton
- Stylin' Crab (Boston crab)
- With Travis Kooper
- Ignite (Brainbuster by Kooper followed by a 450° splash by Styles)
- BreakDown (Backstabber (Styles)/ Spear (Kooper) combination)
- Signature moves
- Powerbomb (Kooper) / Neckbreaker (Styles) combination
- Elbow drop (Styles) / Leg drop (Kooper) combination
- Double Pelé kick
- Double Gutbuster
- Dropkick (Styles) / German Suplex (Kooper) combination
- Ric Flair
- Jeff Jarrett
- "The Phenomenal One"
- "The Most Decorated Man in TNA"
- "Stylin' and Profilin'"
- "The Prince of Phenomenal"
- "Mr. TNA"
- "Prince A.J."
- "The New Nature Boy"
- "The Lone Wolf"
- "The Face that Runs the Place"
- "Fortune 4" by Dale Oliver (2010–2011, 2013; Used while a part of Fortune)
- "I Am I Am" by Dale Oliver (January 29, 2012–July 2, 2012)
- "I Am (GRITS Remix)" by GRITS (2009–2011; July 9, 2012–June 3, 2013; June 28, 2015–July 30, 2015)
- "Remember Who I Am" by Jim Johnston (2012–2013; Used while teaming with Travis Kooper)
- "Ignition" by TobyMac (2013; Used while teaming with Travis Kooper)
- "Evil Ways (Justice Mix)" by Blues Saraceno (2013)
- "Phenomenal" by CFO$ (WCW)
- "Comin' for Ya" by Def Rebel (WCW; Used as part of the OC)
Championships and accomplishments
- New Japan Pro Wrestling
- IWGP Heavyweight Championship (2 times)
- Pro Wrestling Illustrated
- PWI Tag Team of the Year (2006) with Christopher Daniels
- PWI ranked him #1 of the top 500 singles wrestlers in the PWI 500 in 2010
- Total Nonstop Action Wrestling
- NWA World Heavyweight Championship (3 times)
- NWA World Tag Team Championship (4 times) – with Jerry Lynn (1), Abyss (1), and Daniels (2)
- TNA Legends/Global/Television Championship (2 times)
- TNA World Heavyweight Championship (2 times)
- TNA World Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Tomko
- TNA X-Division Championship (6 times)
- First TNA Triple Crown Champion (4 times)
- First TNA Grand Slam Champion (2 times)
- Feud of the Year (2005) vs. Christopher Daniels
- Finisher of the Year (2003) Styles Clash
- Match of the Year (2006) with Christopher Daniels vs. Homicide and Hernandez at No Surrender, September 24, 2006
- Match of the Year (2009) vs. Sting at Bound for Glory, October 18, 2009
- Mr. TNA (2003–2005)
- Tag Team of the Year (2006) with Christopher Daniels
- X Division Star of the Year (2004)
- World Championship Wrestling
- World Wrestling Entertainment