When AJ Styles, the first-ever X-Division Champion, announced the return of the six-sided ring at Destination X pay-per-view, he was interrupted by Samoa Joe, the man responsible for elevating the X Division from feature spectacle to pay-per-view headline. With continued exchanges of bravado in regards to who contributed more to the division, and talks of who should headline the pay-per-view, one crucial name was missing.
In 2005, the match that put TNA Wrestling on the map — garnering a 5 star rating in Dave Meltzer’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter — was a three-way bout between AJ Styles, Samoa Joe, and Christopher Daniels at Unbreakable. The three followed up with an encore performance at Turning Point in 2009. So when Fortune’s music hit to reveal The Fallen Angel, no one was surprised. In fact, they were counting on it.
Ever since Christopher Daniels returned to TNA to save Fortune from a four–on–three assault at the hands of Immortal, TNA purists have been anticipating a Part III.
Then something went wrong.
Christopher Daniels praised their history in the X-Division and decreed that at Destination X the wrestling fans would get what they wanted — Christopher Daniels vs. AJ Styles. Samoa Joe, not believing what he had just heard, gathered that Styles would correct Daniels and propose the anticipated 3-Way match. But Styles accepted the one-on-one challenge, leaving Joe flustered.
Why does Daniels want to face Styles one-on-one? Aren’t they comrades in Fortune?
Kazarian interrogated Daniels on what had just happened. “It’s all in the spirit of competition,” he said.
Back when Daniels was released from his TNA contract in 2010, he returned to Ring of Honor on April 3, 2010, at their live pay-per-view The Big Bang, confronting Davey Richards, proclaiming that he was back to prove that he was the best in the world. Shortly thereafter, The Fallen Angel tested himself against Richards, Austin Aries, and even winning his first singles title, the ROH World Television Championship, from the current ROH World Champion Eddie Edwards.
Yet, despite finding success outside of TNA, and ROH officials reinstating the TV Title based on their impending return to television in the fall under Sinclair Broadcasting Group, which he will defend at Ring of Honor’s aptly named “Best in the World” pay-per-view on June 26, his mind is stuck on Final Resolution. In TNA’s final pay-per-view of 2009, Christopher Daniels lost his bid for the TNA Championship when AJ Styles planted him with an Ultra Styles-clash off the middle rope to retain.
His loss to Styles caused him to lose his focus, which subsequently led him down a losing streak before his departure. Now, after battling against the top stars in Ring of Honor, Daniels has regained his focus.
So while a 3-Way match would have been ideal, Daniels, before he can claim the moniker “Best in the World,” needs to prove to himself that he can defeat “The Phenomenal” AJ Styles.
But what about Joe?
The first time Styles-Joe-Daniels met, they competed for the X Division Title, while subsequently proving that they were the future of TNA. Then in 2009, they declared their spots in TNA as they competed for the TNA World Heavyweight Title.
Now these three have the golden opportunity, sorta speak, to compete for something more sacred — the pure intent of wrestling. Title belts do not solely determine a wrestler’s worth, it’s testing your skills against the best in the business.
This is why Christopher Daniels wants AJ Styles one-on-one. As for Samoa Joe, his confrontation with Kazarian may prove to be his next challenge.
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