In a remarkable turn of events two years ago, Bryan Danielson bid farewell to WWE after an enduring tenure of over 11 years. His next stop? All Elite Wrestling (AEW) was a move that stirred excitement amongst wrestling enthusiasts.
Since his induction into AEW, Danielson has showcased his mettle against some of the promotion's titans, including AEW World Champion MJF, the legendary Chris Jericho, Jon Moxley, and the enigmatic Kenny Omega. Fans were treated to a masterclass when Danielson squared off in a riveting Strap Match against Ricky Starks at the AEW All Out event.
This bout was all the more remarkable considering it occurred two months after Danielson's harrowing injury, where he broke his arm in an iconic face-off with Kazuchika Okada.
Danielson's Dual Roles
Away from solo acts, Danielson is a pivotal member of the Blackpool Combat Club alongside Jon Moxley, ROH World Champion Claudio Castagnoli, and the promising Wheeler Yuta.
Although the faction has exhibited a more antagonist demeanour lately, Danielson stands out, often portraying the role of the hero when on his solo ventures. Despite his prominent wrestling feats, Danielson is not limited to the ring.
Behind the scenes, he plays an influential role in AEW's creative process. AEW's Owner & CEO, Tony Khan, expressed unequivocal trust in Danielson. In a candid revelation, Khan mentioned that if fate ever dealt him a hand where he couldn't oversee AEW, his recommendation would be for his family to hand over the reins to Danielson.
This underscores the profound regard Khan holds for the wrestling maestro. During his WWE tenure, Danielson enjoyed a profound relationship with Vince McMahon, viewing him akin to a fatherly figure. However, the dynamic at AEW is different.
Interestingly, Danielson, at 42, is two years Khan's senior. Both share a mutual nostalgia, having been wrestling fans during the same golden era. This shared history and passion make their camaraderie unique. Speaking to Sports Illustrated, Danielson articulated, "Even if I never wrestled in AEW again, Tony and I would still connect. We relate through wrestling, and that's a bond like no other. To me, that's the true essence of friendship."
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