AJ Styles is a major player in WWE today, but the company wanted him long ago
Following the buyout of WCW, AJ Styles was sought out by WWE. Mike Bucci, who worked as Nova and Simon Dean for WWE before becoming a talent development manager, spoke to the Pancakes & Powerslams Podcast about the situation.
"I was right there for it. It was me and AJ. We were in Australia doing a tour for World Wrestling All-Stars. I told him I had been signed by WWE. They had a tryout in Cincinnati and he had went to that. I thought I was going to have to go to that, and I didn’t, I went right through it. In Cincinnati, he’d told me basically, after the tour in Australia we’d come back, and they had a [show] in Vegas," said Bucci.
According to Bucci, he was being recruited by Jeff Jarrett and Bob Ryder himself, but was told that the idea was to make Styles the centerpiece of TNA Wrestling.
“Bob Ryder and Jeff Jarrett had come up to me, and they told me that they were launching this new company called TNA. I told them that I had just signed with WWE, and I want to give it a shot. They wanted me to come to TNA, and they wanted to build the company around AJ. So, it’s not that AJ never wanted to go to the WWE, it was just that the offer was never right for AJ to come to WWE," said Bucci.
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