Many of those who watched 34 year old Daniel Bryan’s (real name Brian Danielson) tearful sendoff on RAW on Monday probably assumed he would just wrestle for another promotion once his WWE contract expires.
D-Bry set the record straight in an interview with former WWE Superstar Brian Coachman in an interview on ESPN Tuesday afternoon:
- He referenced his frustration with WWE refusing to clear him on RAW Monday during his remarks regarding his brain injury. It’s fair to say WWE’s decision to never clear him has been vindicated in light of prettymuch being told the next time he wrestles could be his last.
- D-Bry’s decision to retire is reminiscient of WWE Hall of Famer Edge, who was forced to retire after Wrestlemania 26 due to damage to his spine: It wasn’t one act that can be pointed to. It’s 16 years of wrestling that took its toll on him. I say this mostly since there are those who believe the neck injury he suffered in 2013 at the hands of Kane shortened his career.
- While is is true D-Bry was a WWE superstar for 6 years, he wrestled in other promotions all over the world. He is known outside WWE as The American Dragon Brian Danielson (which he referenced on RAW).
- No question his decision to retire now is to avoid sharing the same fate as the late Eddie Guerrieo, who died suddenly about 10 years ago. It was later revealed a lifetime of head injuries was the mainfactor in his death: He reportedly complained of a bad headache and collapsed. He was then rushed to a hospital and was pronounced dead. As some folks have said on Facebook, the decision to retire now may have just saved his life in the long run.
- As he revealed on RAW, D-Bry and his wife, WWE Diva Brie Bella want to start having kids soon. Brie’s obviously gonna need to take at least a year off in-ring action when she gets pregnant. Thanks to NXT, she’ll have an easier time bouncing back after giving birth. With D-Bry no longer wrestling, he can help out with the kid(s).
- This wasn’t touched on at RAW or on ESPN but D-Bry is contracted with WWE through at least 2018. No doubt the terms of his contract were changed to have a No Compete Clause. WWE isn’t stupid: They’ll figure out a way for him to have the spotlight as much as possible. They’ll want to keep him happy not just for his sake but for Brie’s sake, who is on the active roster.
To those holding out hope D-Bry will sign with another promotion, forget it. He said it himself such a move would be a death wish. He and his wife want to have kids so…yeah. D-Bry having to live with the fact that he’ll never wrestle again sucks but in his mind, it’s better than being dead or paralyzed. I could tell by the emotion he is well aware his lifespan may have been shortened.
Here’s something about brain damage that sets it apart from every other type of injury: You NEVER fully recover from it. It’s permanent. There is no heal over time like a broken bone or a torn ligament. Scientists no longer believe even stem cells can reverse damage from brain injuries.
Thanks to new research and findings on concussions, we now know it could be YEARS before the damage is detectable–sometimes not until after death. Seattle Seahawks star Marshawn Lynch announced his retirement during Super Bowl 50. He is 29 years old. Thanks to what we know now about concussions, those who play contact sports are thinking down the road when they start playing in the NFL. Lynch just started a trend even if he doesn’t know it. You can expect more and more players to do so.
Getting back to D-Bry, we certainly haven’t seen the last of him. Given the PR nightmare Vince McMahon just created, we might see him sooner than expected.