WWE Champion A.J. Styles recently spoke with Justin Barrasso of Sports Illustrated to promote next month’s WrestleMania 34, where he defends his title against Shinsuke Nakamura in what is being billed as a “Dream Match.” Featured below are some of the highlights from the interview.
On feeling like he has more to prove: “I only know how to do one thing: go out there and do my best. Now that sounds like I’m talking to my own kid, saying ‘Do your best,’ but that’s all I’m worried about. If I do that, I can do no wrong. I will put all the preparation and experience I have into that match to make it the best I can.”
On defending the WWE Championship against Shinsuke Nakamura at WrestleMania 34: “This match is special because we’ve yet to see it in WWE. The only other time we were in the ring together was more than two years ago [in New Japan Pro Wrestling]. We gave people a taste in the “Money in the Bank” match, and that moment let everyone in the back know how special this match could be. The fans responded by asking for this match, and I want to give it to them. Shinsuke won the Royal Rumble, so now we have that opportunity. If you know the history between myself and Shinsuke, you’re pretty excited about this match. But even if you don’t, just think what Shinsuke Nakamura is capable of and what AJ Styles is capable of. To mix those two together is going to be something special. Shinsuke has the same mindset. He wants this to be one of the greatest matches in WrestleMania history. I don’t know if we’re going to reach that level, but we’re certainly going to try.”
On a potential dream match against Daniel Bryan in WWE: “Shoot, now that he’s cleared, who knows when Daniel Bryan and I will have the opportunity to get in the ring together? But who knows when I’ll get in the ring with Seth Rollins, or again with Finn Balor, or even Randy Orton? There are guys I have yet to get in the ring with, but now that Daniel Bryan is cleared and ready, he’s in line. Who knows what’s going to come first? There are a lot of great things that will happen in the next couple years.”
Check out the complete A.J. Styles interview at SI.com.