RAW General Manager Daniel Bryan appeared on Ebro In The Morning on New York’s Hot 97 this week and spoke with Ebro & Peter Rosenberg about his desire to wrestle again, concussions and much more in this nearly one-hour interview. The appearance was to promote Tuesday’s SmackDown Live from Newark, NJ.
For those following the saga of Bryan wanting to return to the ring, he’s made his desires clear to WWE, they’ve refused to clear him for action. So where do things stand?
“We are still at, ‘No, you’re not wrestling’ part of that conversation,” Bryan said. “But, I have presented them with my case, which is a lot of testing and all that type of stuff which shows, ‘Hey, I’m fine’ and so it’s interesting. It’s an interesting situation. But it’s also caused a rift between me and the commissioner Shane McMahon, because there’s all this stuff going on. We work together really well, but we also have some beef.”
Ebro said that often makes for a great situation and compared it to a husband and wife who might not get along great but are still awesome parents to their children. Bryan joked that it would be better if you were great parents and a great married couple.
Ebro, a casual fan, asked Bryan specifically why WWE says he can’t wrestle. Bryan replied, “Oh, so I’ve had too many concussions.” They all acknowledged the seriousness of concussions and how it’s having a ripple effect on all sports, from players to parents being more cautious about what they let their children participate in.
Bryan continued, “I think there’s a lot of miseducation surrounding concussions. That’s one of the things I’ve actually been working with people at the concussion institute in Phoenix where I live, and he’s talked to me about going to talk to kids. For example, if you’re a high school football player, and you get a concussion, and you’re like, ‘Oh no, I’m in line for a scholarship, if I tell someone, they might take me out of the game next week.'”
Bryan continued by saying that concussions are not a death sentence. It’s not anything like that and concussion research is still in its early stages. If players get a concussion, it’s important to tell your coach and not play again until your brain is healed. Once you’re healed, you can still play at a high level and it will have minimal longterm impact.
He’s been looked at by many of the country’s leading concussion experts who tell him that he’s fine to wrestle.
Ebro asked why must he wrestle? He’s still involved in the wrestling business. Bryan said he loves wrestling, but he doesn’t love all of it. He loves the physicality of being in the ring and now his job involves the parts of wrestling he doesn’t like (ie. travel).
When asked if he’s addicted to wrestling and the action, Bryan gave an interesting response. At first, addressing the ‘physicality’ aspect, he said “no,” – he does other physical things like jiujitsu and kickboxing which give him some fulfillment there. He then admitted he is addicted to wrestling mentally and acknowledged it’s a borderline obsession for him.
Bryan talked about Tom Brady. He’s suffered multiple concussions, he’s financially set, why does he keep playing?
As for where his wife Brie weighs in, Bryan said she’s fully supportive, she’s been there when he’s gotten the green light from doctors and she’s behind him 100%.
This writeup covers the first 10 minutes or so from the interview – there’s much, much more to it – which you can check out below in its entirety: