It’s only been a couple of months, but the historic story of Daniel Bryan’s in-ring return hasn’t lost an ounce of it’s magical flair. Bryan has appeared in numerous interviews to really dissect his battle to get back in the ring, and how important his wife Brie and his new daughter Birdie were during the entire process. We’ve also heard him talk about the actual rehabilitation necessary to strengthen his brain on Y2J’s Talk is Jericho.
On the Why Not Now? podcast Bryan sits down with Amy Jo Martin to add to the always epic tale of getting cleared by WWE. Most notable is the moment he knew he wanted to fight for his dream. It was during his tenure as SmackDown Live general manager, and he was watching two of the very best in the company to inspire him.
I had been cleared by several neurologists, well known neurologists from all over the country, and they still wouldn’t clear me to wrestle, the WWE wouldn’t clear me to wrestle, but these other neurologists had. But I had accepted it at some point and just been like, ‘okay, pro wrestling had been my dream since I was a little kid, right? And I had a good 16 years in, and all of that kind of stuff. And I kind of accepted it as ‘maybe it was dangerous’ and that sort of thing, but I was sitting by the ring watching a match. They had me in this role, this non-wrestling role, the General Manager of the show, sit out by the ring and I was watching these guys wrestle and they were two of my friends that I had known for years, right? A guy named Dean Ambrose and AJ Styles. And I was sitting there and they’re both really good, and the crowd’s going crazy, and I was like, ‘I refuse to accept this It took me another year-and-a-half before I got cleared, but I did it!
A.J. Styles continues to prove why he’s one of the best in the world, but Dean Ambrose is no slouch either. That particular feud back in 2016 gave Styles the rub during his first WWE Championship title run and solidified Ambrose as more than just a mid-card talent. Now we can safely add in that this feud gave Bryan the guts to fight for his career.