Last night, at a SmackDown Live house show event in Trenton, NJ, WWE Champion AJ Styles returned to in-ring competition after an injury scare kept him on the sidelines for just over a week.
The initial incident took place during an assault by Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn at the Madison Square Garden event on Friday, March 16. After the attack, referees held up the ‘X’ signal to alert management of a legitimate injury. Styles was then helped to the back by two officials. This was, however, thought to have been a ‘work’ as Styles appeared just minutes later to come to the aid of fellow babyface and WrestleMania 34 opponent Shinsuke Nakamura.
In a surprising turn of events, Styles was subsequently pulled from advertised house show appearances following the show in question, confirming that the injury may be genuine after all. This fueled speculation that he might not make his scheduled WrestleMania 34 title defense on April 8.
Styles stated in interviews throughout the past week that he would make WrestleMania no matter what. Luckily, it was reported on Friday that the WWE Champion had been cleared to return to in-ring competition once again.
Thanks to a safe and intelligent decision, Styles’ in-ring return was during an eight-man tag team match that saw him team with the New Day to take on Rusev Day, Chad Gable and Shelton Benjamin where the ‘Phenomenal One’ picked up the win over Aiden English after hitting his Phenomenal forearm. It should be noted that Styles only took part physically in the last two minutes of the match, showing a cautious approach on WWE‘s part to which I simply say thank you.
- WrestleMania 34
- Shelton Benjamin
- rusev day
- aiden english
- AJ Styles
- Chad Gable
- wwe champion
- SmackDown Live
- the new day
- Shinsuke Nakamura
- New Day
- Madison Square Garden
- wwe championship
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