AJ Styles Reveals the Moment he Finally Won Over Vince McMahon

To the casual eye, AJ Styles entered WWE undersized and in the wrong half of his long wrestling [...]

To the casual eye, AJ Styles entered WWE undersized and in the wrong half of his long wrestling career. However, the 41-year old wrestling freak transcended that stigma en route to becoming one of WWE's most dependable main event stars.

But before that could happen, Styles had to convince Vince McMahon that he more just a well-traveled veteran.

During an interview with Dirtfork, the sitting WWE Champion recalled the low expectations WWE originally assigned him.

"From my understanding, I was looked at as a mid-card at best in the WWE. That was the plan and I was okay with that because it was still a great job, a great payday and a great way to take care of my family," he said.

Whatever plans were assumed for Styles had to be altered after his explosive debut at the 2016 Royal Rumble.

"I didn't necessarily think that's where I was going to be but there was that time when I made my debut and fans knew who I was in Orlando. They made some noise and it was pretty great. Vince [McMahon] assumed it was a fluke. He didn't think too much of A.J. Styles."

After witnessing Styles popularity at the Rumble, McMahon tossed him more opportunities.

"I don't even think I was supposed to be on Raw that next Monday. But the turning point where Vince really saw something in me was when I had a regular match, a babyface match, went out and did my thing," said Styles.

However, despite his effort, McMahon told Styles that what he was doing was not enough to become a player in WWE.

"I came back to gorilla and Vince says, 'Come here for a second. I've got other guys who can do exactly what you just did out there. You didn't do anything special. I need a pit bull. I need a guy who just attacks. I need a guy who gets after it,'" Styles recalled.

After McMahon laid down the challenge, Styles responded by kicking things into high gear.

"I said, 'Well, I know that guy. I know exactly who that guy is' and there was the opportunity to be on Miz TV and I handled it just like I was ready to eat this guy's lunch and basically, I think the way that turned out was the turning point for Vince," he said.

Soon after, McMahon and WWE become invested in the Phenomenal One.

"The next thing you know, after WrestleMania, I'm beating Chris Jericho and I'm the No. 1 contender for the WWE Championship against Roman Reigns where we had a couple of fantastic matches.