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AJ Styles On His Initial Reaction to Facing John Cena at SummerSlam 2016, Their Chemistry In the Ring

August 28, 2020 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas
AJ Styles John Cena WWE SummerSlam

AJ Styles spoke on a recent episode of The Bump about his match with John Cena at SummerSlam 2016. Styles faced Cena in a singles match that saw Styles pick up the win, and they would face off again at the Royal Rumble the next year. You can see highlights from Styles’ comments and the full video below:

On his initial reaction when he found out he’d be facing Cena: “[I was] super excited about it. I knew that it was going to be special, no doubt about it. Him and I have just had this chemistry and I’ve said this over and over again. I mean, we’re totally two different performers in every way. But him and I gel so well together. I knew this was going to be a fun match. And it was literally, as I’m warming up, smiling the whole time because I knew it was going to be great.”

On his match with Cena at Royal Rumble 2017: “Like I said, the chemistry that we have is unbelievable. So what you don’t know about that match at the Royal Rumble, it’s because that one at SummerSlam was totally different. We never went outside of the ring in the Royal Rumble match, we never went onto the floor. Which is different than most matches, you know? So I’m really proud of that. There’s a lot things to be proud of about these matches, and that was one of them.”

On if the match is a little underrated now in terms of what it’s meant to his career: “Listen, that match in 2016 with John Cena was a game-changer for me. It changed everything. And so if people are downplaying it, they say it wasn’t that great but maybe they wasn’t watching the same match that everybody else was. I thought it was great, everything about it. The atmosphere, the fans were amazing. I think it was a match that not a lot of people thought they’d see, including myself. To be able to compete against John Cena in a WWE ring at one of the bigger PPVs of the year was, it’s unbelievable. I thought it’s easily one of the best matches of my career.”

If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit WWE’s The Bump with a h/t to 411mania.com for the transcription.