A.J. Styles On "If It Didn't Happen In WWE, It Didn't Happen" Mentality, John Cena & More

WWE Champion A.J. Styles recently spoke with the folks at ComicBook.com to promote the new BOOM! Studios Royal Rumble special issue. Below are some of the highlights from the interview.

On the comic having a story regarding the WWE marketing team attempting to give him the name "The Redneck Rookie" and his take on that: "Well, it was always A.J. Styles because of the problem of having a large tattoo on my side that says A.J. on that. I don't think we'd be able to hide that, but there was a point I think where they were calling me a rookie, to some degree. I'm like I don't know if you can really call me a rookie. I haven't been here in the WWE, but I don't think you can call me a rookie. Redneck, absolutely. There's no way I could hide that. That's exactly who I am, but as far as the rookie thing, that was the only thing that was not ever going to stick."

On the mentality of "if it didn't happen in WWE ... it didn't happen" being part of the story, especially in a confrontation with John Cena: "Well, the thing is, is when you're stuck in a bubble, you're stuck in a bubble. You don't really notice too much going outside of it. There's so much going in the WWE. A guy came up to me and says, "Man, I have no idea what you've done outside of here." I totally understand because when I was in Japan I was in that bubble. When I was somewhere else I was in that bubble and it's hard to focus on someone else or what's going on somewhere else because you're so consumed with what's going on around you. I would get that."

On that "bubble theory" relating to his signature moves, such as 'The Styles Clash': "Truth of the matter is, I've seen a lot of moves done outside of the WWE and then someone does them in the WWE and now automatically they invented it. That was the move that they came ... I've seen it. The joke has always been, if you do it on TV first you're the one invented it. Michelle McCool apparently, or Crash Harley, I've seen him doing the Styles Clash so was it their move? But then again, if you didn't watch WCW in 2001 then you didn't see me do the Styles Clash then, so I'm just throwing that out there."

Check out the complete A.J. Styles interview at ComicBook.com.