The four-time WWE champion Daniel Bryan is back, after being medically cleared to wrestle for the first time in more than two years.
Bryan (real name Bryan Danielson) had to announce an early retirement in February 2016 after suffering ‘at least 10 concussions’ and seizures. Nasty.
Yet the 36-year-old WWE star said he’d been given the go-ahead after seeing ‘a number of leading neurosurgeons and neurologists, as well as WWE’s Medical Director’, according to TMZ Sports.
Wrestling fans everywhere hoped the announcement would be part of a storyline and all one big ruse, in which Bryan would reveal he wasn’t injured at all and would be back for WrestleMania 32 in the April, but it wasn’t.
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
On the night of his announcement, Bryan stepped out and gave one of the most emotional farewell speeches in the history of WWE to a devastated audience in Seattle, as well as the millions of viewers watching at home.
Bryan revealed, despite months spent trying to get cleared to return to the ring, the WWE and their concussion expert Dr. Joseph Maroon, had refused to give him the ok. Which was probably a wise move.
Here’s a clip of his farewell:
It gets to the point where you’ve been wrestling for 16 years, that adds up to a lot of concussions. It gets to a point where they tell you you can’t wrestle any more.
A week and a half ago I took a test which said maybe my brain isn’t as okay as I thought it was. I have a family to think about and it is with a heavy heart and the utmost sadness that I officially announce my retirement.
Bryan has been serving as the General Manager of ‘SmackDown Live’, but now he could be an active competitor at WrestleMania 34 in April!