It’s been exactly a week since everyone’s favorite beard Daniel Bryan announced his retirement on Twitter and later on Monday Night RAW. The circumstance around his retirement were frightening (to put it lightly) and it appears as if the “American Dragon” called it quits before his health or even his life could have been placed in jeopardy.
Bryan meant many different things to many different people in the wrestling world. He was a fantastic entertainer, loving, charitable man and all-around good human being. His time within a wrestling ring will surely be missed and even though he only spent around 6-7 years on the WWE level, his impact on the wrestling business as a whole has been utterly remarkable both in front of the camera and behind the scenes.
Before Daniel Bryan, men like Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose, Sami Zayn, Cesaro, Kevin Owens, Luke Harper and AJ Styles could very well have been overlooked for being “indy talent” and not those men or women with the right “pedigree” to become WWE superstars. Some say (myself included) Daniel Bryan helped break down that stigma through pure talent, resiliency and personality alone. He didn’t have the look of Randy Orton, the body of John Cena or the legacy of The Rock but yet he still made it to the very top of his profession.
Bryan became the face of the new WWE superstar. Now there are men and women in NXT who are getting opportunities that may have new been possible 5 years ago. The different styles Hideo Itami, Samoa Joe and even the NXT Champion Finn Balor have brought a freshness to the WWE and are all on the verge of being prime-time stars on RAW and SmackDown. Daniel Bryan’s legacy will last long after he’s just another name in a record book. I’m glad was able to witness Bryan “Daniel Bryan” Danielson in his prime and I thank him for sharing his talent with the world.