"Well I mean, and I can understand why people want to believe that it is a work. Because they don't want to; first of all I'm sure they don't want to believe that I'm actually not working for TNA. Second, I told them that I didn't have a contract in the first place. Cause I didn't. I had an extension. So I understand why they might believe it's a work, and why it's hard to believe but it's even hard for me to believe. That after working with a company for 11 years, and busting your tail and doing what you thought was right and doing it to the best of your ability that it would even come down to a negotiation where it would take a long time or anything like that. I just figured that we'd find a way. And the timing, you know it just had me where I had to make a decision. I had to do something and I just figured that this is an opportunity and I need to take it."
The belief is that AJ Styles has a good amount of money saved up over the years. He has never been known to be a big spender or party guy. Even without a TNA contract, he should be fine just working a few times a month on the independent wrestling circuit.
"Well, my opinions don't really matter because the storyline, for me, is just to entertain the fans and keep them engaged in what's going on with the company. I will say that any time that you have the opportunity to take the top prize in the company and take it internationally, and maybe compete and defend it in some territories and in front of some sets of fans that don't normally get to have that honor, I think that's a great thing for the company. That helps get the brand out there and helps put the product out there. A guy like AJ Styles is obviously a great talent and he's going to go out there and put on a performance that's befitting of a man who is the World Champion. So, from that standpoint alone, I don't see how there could be anything negative coming from AJ taking that belt all over the world and defend it against anybody that wants an opportunity. I know that's the same mindset I've had in my past when I've been world champion. Bring 'em all on, near and far, we don't like to sit here and pretend that the only wrestling is the wrestling that happens in our universe. There's professional wrestling going on all over the world and we want to acknowledge it and put our best against their best at any time."
How would you describe your two bosses Vince McMahon and Dixie Carter? You can't compare Vince to anybody, if it wasn't for Vince McMahon I wouldn't be here talking to you. He knows how to make money and make stars, I wouldn't be working for Dixie Carter right now if it wasn't for Vince McMahon doing what he did for me. Dixie is a woman and she has that caring aspect about her, sometimes she lets personal [issues] get involved with business because she can't help it. She cares about the wrestlers and their wellbeing and their welfare. Other than that I think Dixie has done a great job, we are talking about a woman that has been involved in the entertainment business but not the wrestling business. It is different when you are involved in music and go over to wrestling, there is so much difference, I think the last 12 years she has had to learn on the job and I think she has done a good job. I can't say anything bad about her, one thing I'll say is that I'm not sure she would have made it without the help of Jeff Jarrett because she did need someone to help transition here and there and Jeff has a great mind for the business. She has learnt a lot during her time at TNA but at the same time she has to make business decisions that she doesn't necessarily like. Lately she has made some very rash business decisions when you are talking about Hulk Hogan and AJ Styles but she has to do what is best for the company, if she thinks that is what is best for the company she has to do it. Would other people agree, no, but she is doing what is best for her company and you can't blame her for that."
- Kurt Angle on comparisions between Vince McMahon and Dixie Carter
"It's tough, even Hulk Hogan was a tough loss to accept. Sting has been the cornerstone of the company, Jarrett founded the company and I think he might be the best heel in the business, and AJ Styles is just the best athlete I've ever been in the ring with. From three different perspectives it is a tough pill to swallow because they are three of the best. When you don't have them in the company you hope to god that the young talent steps up, guys like Bobby Roode, Austin Aries, and James Storm seem to be stepping up. Will they replace Sting? You can't replace Sting, will they replace AJ? Probably not, AJ is irreplaceable, but will they become their own characters and do really well, yes they will do phenomenally well and it's not about replacing anymore, it's about making new stars."
- Kurt Angle on TNA losing stars recently