Rejoice, Because AJ Styles Wants To Wrestle Shinsuke Nakamura At WrestleMania

AJ Styles wants to face Shinsuke Nakamura at WrestleMania. To quote the great Stone Cold Steve Austin, let me respond to that with a big “OH HELL YEAH!”

Styles made the comments when he appeared on the Edge and Christian’s “E&C Pod of Awesomeness” last week. It’s a fun show where they covered a lot from Christian working with Styles in TNA in the mid-2000s, Styles leaving TNA to head to New Japan a few years ago and of course the jump from New Japan to WWE in early 2016. There was also some interesting comments from Styles about who he wants to face at WrestleMania. Thanks to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.

“I’ve never worked Shinsuke Nakamura on US soil, so that could be a big deal. Hopefully, when it finally happens in WWE, it should be something big. It should be bigger than just a match. That’s the one I’d like to do at WrestleMania, to be honest with you. But, I’ve let them know how important it is to me that we don’t do that, that we don’t just have a match. There’s so much build that can go into this and I almost feel like right before people think it’s about to happen, finally we get Nakamura and AJ Styles at this pay-per-view, something happens. Like, we can stretch this out as long as we want to finally give you the big payoff when it’s necessary, the climax of it, if you will.”

They did a great tease at Money in the Bank in June when they battled it out in the ring while the other four guys in the match were down. At that time I thought it might be WWE setting up the match for SummerSlam, but hopefully they can wait until WrestleMania for it. The duo have also teamed up together on Smackdown before.

Styles also discussed his goal of wanting to main event WrestleMania.

“I would like to somehow find myself back at the main event. Everybody wants to be in the main event of WrestleMania. I’ll keep climbing that ladder and see where it takes me, but there’s nothing better than being a part of WrestleMania except being in the main event of WrestleMania.”

I hope it happens, because Styles has been the best superstar in WWE since he walked in the door 18 months ago and he continues to perform at a high level. At 40 years old, he may wrestle another four or five years as a full timer just based on his age, so if it’s going to happen then it would have to be in the next few years.

Styles added that it was Vince McMahon’s call to have Styles win the US Title at a live event in New York City’s Madison Square Garden earlier this month.

“To me, it’s smart. It’s something that hasn’t been done in a long time and to do it at Madison Square Garden and everybody with WWE knows that’s a big deal. I think it was awesome. I think it was very clever and I loved it. There was a pop, ‘he won! Yes!’ but, ‘well, who’s going to walk out there?’ and then, there was another pop because nobody walked out there. It was really cool, but it was smart to not do that every year, but every couple of years to do something like that. I think it just came down to doing something different and it was Vince’s call and no one else’s. And yeah, it was great.”

There have been two more U.S. Title changes since then with Kevin Owens winning back the title at Battleground this past Sunday and Styles getting it back at Smackdown on Tuesday.

Will Styles vs. Nakamura happen for the first time ever (in a WWE ring) at WrestleMania? There’s no way of knowing, but I agree with Styles that it would be the best place for their first WWE match. Here’s hoping WWE has the patience to wait until next April for it rather than doing it on some other show before then.