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Daniel Bryan

Real Name - Bryan Lloyd Danielson

Birthdate - 5/22/81

5’10” 210 lbs. - Aberdeen, WA

Athletic Background - Football (High School); Mixed Martial Arts

Teacher(s) - Shawn Michaels, Rudy Boy Gonzales; Lord Steven Regal

Professional Background - Indies(`99-), FMW(`99), MCW(`99-`01), Indies(`01-`09), ROH(`02-`09), New Japan(`02-`04), All-Star[UK](`03), NOAH(`06-`09), AAA(`08), Dragon Gate USA(`09,`10), WWE(`09-`10), Indies(`10), WWE(`10-)

AliasesAmerican Dragon, Bryan Danielson

Groups - DP Associates, La Legión Extranjera, The Nexus

Peak Years - ??

Finisher(s) - 

- Yes! Lock / LeBell Lock (Omaplata Crossface Hold)

- Running High Knee

- Flying Headbutt

- Cattle Mutilation (Bridging Butterfly Lock)

- Scissored Crossface Chickenwing

Favorites -

- Suicide Dive

- Neckbreaker Lariat

- Grounded Octopus with Elbows

- Dropkick in the corner

- Kicks to kneeling opponent

Ringwork Rating - 

 Move Set8

Intangibles Rating - 


Place in History - If he had never returned to the WWE in 2009, it is hard to say exactly what the legacy of Bryan Danielson might have become.  He had spent most of his career up to that point working all over the globe in venues big and small to become “the best in the world.”  There were none of his generation better than him between the ropes and based on that fact alone, he could have stayed on the independents and continued to work abroad and established his legacy there as he had been.  Even if he had retired at that time, Danielson would be considered a Hall of Famer in the eyes of many based on his body of work up to that point.  However, he entered the WWE system.  It was an uphill climb throughout.  Renamed “Daniel Bryan” and cast as a nerdy internet darling, he made it through the first season of NXT, but not exactly as a promising superstar.  He was let go and brought back over the summer, but still was used in a midcard role.  Although his talent was obvious, the WWE’s rollercoaster booking was doing him no favors.  He was paired with AJ Lee, won Money in the Bank and even won the World championship, but he was never really positioned as a top star.  Daniel Bryan did develop his signature “Yes!” chant, inspired by UFC fighter Diego Sanchez, but the WWE seemed unsure of how to use it or the man behind it.  The thinning roster allowed him to move into the upper tier and while he was matched with John Cena, CM Punk and Randy Orton, even defeated them on occasion, the company’s parity booking hamstringed him.  While it might be argued that Daniel Bryan lacked the superstar appeal that pulls in the average fan, he began clicking with the audience that was coming in a major way.  Whether it was the years of misuse, despite obvious talent or the underdog character the company was trying to get across, the fans took to Daniel Bryan in an authentic way and the “Yes!” chant became a phenomenon.  This organic development coincided with the WWE’s Wrestlemania plans falling apart and it allowed Daniel Bryan to defeat Triple H as well as Batista and Randy Orton to win the WWE Championship in an epic Wrestlemania main event.  Tragically, injuries had mounted up during Bryan’s ascent and despite surgeries and lengthy layoffs, his career appears to be coming to close.  The WWE tenure of Daniel Bryan is a mind-boggling one, but the fact that he got over as an everyman type and was able to have that iconic “Wrestlemania moment” certainly adds a dimension to his legacy.  Like Shawn Michaels, Eddy Guerrero and Chris Benoit, the image of Daniel Bryan victorious in the ring at the conclusion of Wrestlemania after years of climbing the ladder is an inspiring one, but like those men, he seemingly destroyed his body getting there and trying to stay there.  Daniel Bryan was not the first “independent star” to find success in the WWE, but his perseverance and talent took him to the top, if only for a moment, which is something few of his peers from the independents have achieved.