In an interview with Rewind Recap Relive, Erick Rowan talked about the bizarre 'request' from WWE executives. Namely, Rowan, who was Daniel Bryan's henchman, was supposed to look like Bryan Danielson. They wanted him to dress like Danielson but also to cut off his beard.
“I remember the first day, they’re like, ‘We want you to dress like Daniel Bryan. We’re going to cut your beard, even.’ Like, they wanted to cut this nice and short, like, they wanted me to look like him.
Like, ‘Can we do a little makeup, and make his ears.’ True story. We’re at TV, they’ve already given me a couple plaid shirts to look like him." - he said, as quoted by pwmania.com
After that, he decided to head over to Vince McMahon's office and talk to him.
“I think, Dean Malenko came to me and said, ‘We gotta get you to makeup and cut your beard.’ I said, ‘No, we’re gonna talk to Vince.’ So going to Vince’s office, I basically said, ‘Before I start cutting my beard off and making permanent changes to the way I look, can we discuss what exactly do you want out of this?'” Erick Rowan spoke to NBC Sports about the release from WWE.
He explained how it all happened. “I wasn’t ready for my story to stop on that adventure. It’s been a couple of years. I’ve stepped my toes into other avenues of entertainment which I fell in love with.
I’ve been lucky enough to do some bigger arena shows in AEW and get that taste of the crowd, but I haven’t had a story. I haven’t told a story of what’s happened to me since I’ve stepped away from wrestling.
To me, I would love to tell that story on some sort of stage because I think it could be very interesting to see what’s happened to me. I love continuity in wrestling. The last time anybody saw me I had a pet spider that died, so I would like to talk about my years of recklessly wandering the earth finding reason and purpose for life without my precious spider”.