I myself do not know if this is where I should be asking this, but I would appreciate it if I could have some insight from the more experienced GMs out there.
I have a player in my D&D group, and also happens to be the best out of the lot. However his attitude is extremely negative when it comes to rulings inside the game, "negative" may sound a bit harsh but from his point of view he is most probably doing the right thing.
Let me give you some examples instead, Whenever a situation calls for the GM to decide something that is vague or not clear in the book, he will go all out finding every single sentence in the book (or point the lack thereof) that would counter me and try to establish it as the ruling. For example, he as a rogue tried using cunning action to hide behind a tree after popping out and attacking from the same tree and getting successful sneak attack from the advantage of unseen attacker. I ruled out that his cover was blown and that hiding on that same tree would not work anymore. I burned a majority of the time trying to calm his accusations of me breaking the rules and invalidating his character when his stealth would clearly beat their perceptions. And he lost enthusiasm and faded out of the game, including the rest of the players caught by his gloomy aura.
Another time he tried sneaking with invisibility and, again, accused me like above when I had him roll stealth to muffle his footsteps and according to him I had invalidated his "High passive stealth" because, according to the book, that is what passive stealth is about.
I brought a mummy with a "Good" alignment, sort of a helper NPC. He proceeded to kill it under the assumption that "The monster manual says that mummies are all lawful evil and thus you are wrong". This also happens on many more occasions where he assumes certain situations are going to always go according to his plans because his understanding of the rules are always correct and there cannot be anything but "Rules-As-Written" in Dungeons and Dragons, otherwise this would not be Dungeons and Dragons.
Kicking him out of the game is my last resort, I really need some kind of alternative to make him understand that the GM might sometimes rule or interpret something differently than your understanding. I feel like my creativity is limited because I have to spoil him to beat him at his arguments (Monster X does Y because of Z reason).
The rest of the players usually handle my rulings pretty well, and if they have a question, we discuss about it after the game. He also seems to not think about the repercussions of the same rulings that get applied to enemies too, at one instance he declared "Bullshit" and went into a silent rage after getting ambushed by invisible enemies that I let sneak past him with their passive stealth as per his request of how it should have been handled. I could have brought that they would be encountering invisible enemies, but that would have spoiled the game for him and everyone.
I always look at maintaining the perfect balance from a neutral point of view, but I can't help getting bashed by him everytime I try something new.
I am at a loss, does anyone have any experiences with players like him? If so, how did you handle it? How do you exert your power as a GM without sounding like a major bully? Is there a way to counter the argument of "It's not D&D anymore" if I make a single different interpretation of a rule?