Former WWE Superstar and current WWE SmackDown Live General Manager Daniel Bryan has made a ton of press lately. His segment with The Miz on Talking Smack a week ago clearly got the attention of the entire world, and it got many wondering if we would ever see him return to the ring. It was confirmed by Bryan that the segment was planned ahead of time, but he and Miz went off script a bit.
WWE is now keeping the two away from each other because the plan for their mini-rivalry was never meant to lead to what we saw. The idea all along was for Bryan to be used to help set up a match for Miz’s WWE Intercontinental Championship. He would have a short rivalry with Miz that would lead to Daniel setting up the match with Miz and Dolph Ziggler at WWE Backlash this month. The plan was great, but with the two going off script, things got out of hand, and WWE felt it was best to keep the two away from each other for a while.
Many felt that WWE was setting up some sort of return for Daniel Bryan, but with the WWE backing away from everything last week and trying to kill it off before it got more buzz, it seems that they are still against that. There is some good news in all of this, however. According to Ringside News, Bryan’s contract is no longer frozen as he has been working on television doing a variety of things such as working SmackDown Live weekly, as well as doing commentary for the Cruiserweight Classic.
They also noted that his contract is set to expire in 2018 due to all the freezes taking place over the last few years. His deal would have most likely expired this year had it not been for the missed time that was built up over the span of the last two years. This happened to people like Rey Mysterio when he got hurt various times in WWE, and he seemed to see his contract frozen at least once or twice a year due to an injury. However, he never had any notable head injuries like Daniel Bryan.
If Bryan wants to return to the independent scene after his deal with WWE expires, he can do so. He did ask for his release before he made the retirement speech on WWE RAW months back, but the company was completely against cutting him. There are a few reasons that have been rumored behind that. The first and most obvious is that they know they can still make money with him in other areas of the company.
The roles he happens to be in right now are clearly perfect for him and the WWE as he can still be utilized on television. While the company is against anything physical, they were also against this with WWE Hall of Famer Edge, but still managed to do something with him that allowed for him to be used in an angle. It was quite small, but it did work very well for the storyline that they were going with at the time.
The other reason they wanted to keep him in the WWE was because they knew he would go somewhere else and make them money as a wrestler, which may hurt them down the line possibly. While it doubtful anyone will be competition for WWE at this point, there is still some fear that someone with money could always rise up like WCW did years ago. On top of all of this, they really do have concern for Daniel Bryan and his health, and they do not want him to get seriously injured or even disabled wrestling for another company.
The thought among most is that Bryan may slowly adapt to not being in the ring anymore, and the dream of having a family with his wife, Brie Bella, means more to him than wrestling. He made sure to bring this up a number of times, which very well could be Bryan trying to tell the world that he is trying to transition. He might also be trying to convince himself that he does not want to get back in the ring as a wrestler.
A major part of him wants to wrestle for sure, but the other part that knows he shouldn’t seems to be talking to him as the months go on. That very well could be why he has brought up the family material on the air a few times now.
With all of this being said, some do think WWE will eventually allow Daniel Bryan to wrestle again once the concussion and negligence lawsuits are settled, as some think he would be wrestling now if there had been no lawsuits pending when he was cleared by the outside doctors to return.
By 2018, one would imagine that the lawsuits would be over, and WWE might give Bryan another shot at the ring on a limited basis to keep him around. While this is by no means confirmed, many think WWE may do this because they know he’ll just leave and wrestle somewhere else. It remains to be seen if he will ever return to the ring, but for now, he is more than capable of doing the jobs he is presently doing which seem to be going well for him.
[image via WWE]