As seen in the Survivor Series pay-per-view, AJ Styles was absent from the event in Los Angeles. This comes in lieu of Styles reportedly negotiating a new contract with the company. The former WWE Champion apparently requested for a title switch to spend some more time with his family after holding onto the belt for over a year.
While the Phenomenal One skipped a pay-per-view after ages, many wondered his status for SmackDown Live and the plans for the future after losing out to Daniel Bryan in his last appearance. As per Joe Peisich of the Barnburner’s No Holds Barred podcast, Styles will not be appearing on SmackDown as well. He said:
“I don’t believe we’re going to see AJ Styles. I believe he was told to take the week off.”
Mike Johnson of PWInsider also indicated that Styles was not present even backstage at Staples Center during Survivor Series.