A Few Thoughts on AJ’s Retirement

I had decided to take a week off to travel abroad but in the brief moments when I get wifi I can’t resist the temptation to check on the wrestling world. And so in one of these timeslots blessed with Internet connection, I came across the news of AJ’s retirement. Now, in the 10 minutes before my train arrives, I want to share a few quick thoughts on this story.

After Wrestlemania, I noticed people talking about Paige saying “I love you so much” to AJ during their match. The IWC had lost it over that one line, as many were convinced it meant that AJ was leaving the WWE. I didn’t buy it back then. I passed by these rumours as I do with most rumours, thinking that people look for sensations in the smallest of things. Maybe it was just a part of the AJ/Paige frienemies narration or maybe Paige just really likes AJ, who knows. But I was wrong. Aj was in fact about to leave the WWE and it is a big loss for the WWE Universe.

Usually, when the crowd chants someone else’s name during your match, it’s a bad thing. However, the case with AJ was  different. The CM PUNK chants weren’t directed that much at her husband as a plead for his return. No. They were directed at AJ herself because for the WWE fans, both AJ and Punk stand for the same idea- anti-conformism. It’s something that the WWE has been lacking for a while. We keep talking about things and people that “don’t fit the WWE’s standard” for different reasons. Neither Punk, nor AJ did but they both succeeded and that’s what the fans love about them.

It can’t be denied that AJ was not only an exception as a character in the divas division, but she was also a really damn good wrestler. Again, something that the WWE has been missing in the divas division. It was AJ that started the trend for change in the division much before #GiveDivasAChange. She gave us a taste of something better and we started craving for more. AJ and Punk truly are a game-changing duo. They might have left the company but they left their permanent mark in the history of the WWE and the wrestling industry as whole.

I’ll stop here as I’m running out of time and my next destination awaits me.

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