In the SmackDown episode aired on Friday night of the Performance Center, a tournament started for the reassignment of the Intercontinental Champion, after WWE's decision to deprive Sami Zayn of his belt (with all the consequences that this could have for Canadian).
Already the first two quarterfinal matches have been played, while the other two will take place next week. But at the time of the presentation of the calendar by WWE, the general attention fell on one detail not least: the presence of someone who should not have participated in that tournament.
This is obviously AJ Styles, who will return to face Shinsuke Nakamura next Friday. But above all he will return to fight on the SmackDown roster, "the house he built himself" As we know, WWE has launched a small, big news starting this week: the "Brand Invitation"
It is a "Wild Card Rule in a minor tone", the rules of which were explained in the blue show this week. However, the doubt remains related to AJ Styles: why was he entered in a roster tournament not within his competence? Is this a "Brand Invitation", a temporary solution or a real draft for him, with a definitive return to SmackDown? At the moment an official answer is still missing, but everyone's hope is that WWE will not create a new colossal confusion between rosters.
During his career, Styles has headlined numerous pay-per-view events internationally, including the respective premier events of WWE and TNA, WrestleMania and Bound for Glory. In 2010, he became the first TNA-contracted wrestler to be ranked number one on the annual Pro Wrestling Illustrated (PWI) PWI 500 list; after being voted Wrestler of the Year three consecutive times by the magazine between 2016 and 2018 (a feature only accomplished before by Ric Flair from 1984–1986), readers voted him Wrestler of the Decade in 2020.