When Bryan Danielson turned up in AEW in 2021, it made one of the most iconic moments in wrestling history.
Following the debut of Adam Cole at the end of All Out 2021, Bryan Danielson shocked the world by joining the company, just months after main eventing WrestleMania against Edge and Roman Reigns.
His run in the company has been incredible, putting on some of the best matches ever seen, and heading his own faction – the Blackpool Combat Club.
However, in 2018 Bryan Danielson almost signed for Ring of Honor, following the company’s growth on the backs of The Young Bucks and Cody Rhodes.
ROH had grown following the success of Cody Rhodes and The Young Bucks Youtube series, Being the Elite. They had sold 10,000 tickets for their own indepedent show, and looked to be building ROH into a brand.
Considering Bryan Danielson’s history as one of the greatest ROH Champions in history, it made sense for him to join the company and help it grow.
However, he was talked out of signing to ROH by his lawler, who noted how bad of a decision it would be if Cody and The Young Bucks left the promotion.
Speaking in an interview with Inside The Ropes, Bryan Danielson said;
“My contract with WWE was up in 2018, and I was considering going to Ring of Honor. I was talking to the Young Bucks and Cody to see what their plans were because their contracts were also up with Ring of Honor.
My lawyer, who doesn’t know much about pro wrestling, mentioned that signing with Ring of Honor might not be the best idea if the Young Bucks weren’t staying because of their popular YouTube show called ‘Being the Elite,’ which was a major driver of the company’s popularity at the time.
We also discussed what would happen to Ring of Honor’s popularity if Cody left when his contract expired.
He also discussed how he never expected that a YouTube show would become so influential in wrestling, and even eventually lead to the start of a brand-new wrestling company to compete with the WWE (All Elite Wrestling).
Looking back to 2014, I never imagined that the Young Bucks would start a YouTube channel that would become so influential and bring about changes in wrestling. I also didn’t anticipate if someone with financial backing would come in and create a new company, whether they would be fully committed like Tony Khan is with AEW.
If you use any quotes from this article, please H/T Atletifo for the transcription.
Bryan Danielson returned from his enforced retirement in 2018, after being cleared by doctors.
There is a good chance that he would have left to wrestle in ROH if WWE had not allowed him to wrestle again, given how much he wanted to follow his dream of being a pro-wrestling.
Even though he ended up not signing with ROH, he has wrestled against Chris Jericho for the Ring of Honor Championship in AEW.
Bryan Danielson is set to wrestle against Kazuchika Okada at Forbidden Door, in a huge dream match for all parties involved.
Hamish is a writer and podcaster and wrestling fan who is a key part of the Atletifo team.
After playing countless hours of WrestleMania X8 on the Gamecube, he discovered Rey Mysterio getting his head crushed by The Great Khali, and thus a love for professional wrestling was born.
He is also a Media Graduate, as well as writing for multiple sites about Premier League football and the culture of Wales – his home country.