Daniel Bryan’s In-Ring WWE Career Is Over
Daniel Bryan’s future has been up in the air for months as WWE have wrestled with whether to allow him to return to the ring, following a serious concussion. Tonight on RAW he will sadly announce his retirement – from WWE at least, which he revealed on Twitter:
Due to medical reasons, effective immediately, I am announcing my retirement. Tonight on Raw, I'll have a chance to elaborate. #gratitude
— Daniel Bryan (@WWEDanielBryan) February 8, 2016
He has smartened up the hair and beard for the speech:
The former Champion has been defiant since the original concussion diagnosis, seeking several second opinions from doctors who have all cleared him. However WWE’s own Dr. Joseph Maroon (a pioneering yet controversial figure in the concussion field) consistently refused. It’s believed Bryan had one last test recently and it was then a done deal. He will not be allowed to wrestle in a WWE ring again!
Of course as we’ve seen with other WWE “retirements” that doesn’t necessarily mean Bryan’s in-ring career is over. Word is that he’s been trying to get out of his contract so he can wrestle elsewhere, but the company claim he still has time left and they wont release him. Interestingly they invoked a clause used previously on Rey Mysterio, where they pause the contract during injuries so it never expires.
In theory as an independent contractor this would never hold up in court, but who wants a costly legal battle with WWE, ruining their chances of ever returning?
It’s possible that the company have changed their tune and tonight will be the end of it. Though it’s also possible that he’ll be forced to stick around in non-wrestling roles for several months.
Perhaps what’s most annoying in this whole situation is WWE’s “want their cake and eat it” mentality. Daniel Bryan is a professional wrestler and they have refused to let him wrestle. Yet instead of letting him ply his trade elsewhere, he’s been trapped on the sidelines doing nothing. And despite his immense value to the fans (and therefore WWE’s business) they haven’t even used him publicly. When Steve Austin broke his neck he arguably became more popular because they used him in segments. There are many ways he could have been utilized to further storylines and entertain the fans, but instead the focus has been solely on the Roman Reigns vs Authority storyline.
Hopefully a lot of questions will be answered tonight.
What Else To Expect On RAW
WWE.com is also hyping the following for the show, which emanates from the Key Arena in Seattle, Washington and will feature Brock Lesnar:
– Will Dean Ambrose get his pound of flesh from The Beast?
– Expect Chris Jericho to pay very close attention to whatever awaits AJ Styles
– Will Sasha Banks and Becky Lynch’s uneasy union pay off?
– Will The Wyatt Family cut The Big Guy down to size?
– Will Goldust find success in getting R-Truth to be his partner this week?