Bryan Danielson has shared an interesting story about how Vince McMahon was really mad at him because of a dangerous bump that Danielson took in a match.
After Danielson joined AEW earlier this month at the All Out pay-per-view, Danielson spoke about how McMahon was overprotective of him due to Danielson’s injury history with neck and concussion issues.
Danielson, as Daniel Bryan, reached the top of WWE at WrestleMania 30 in 2014 when he left with the WWE Championship. Shortly after that, a neck injury forced him to relinquish the WWE Championship. Over the next two years, Bryan had other health issues including a serious concussion and then he was forced to retire from active competition in WWE in February 2016. Shortly after that, he became the Smackdown General Manager, which kept him on TV regularly. Fast forward to March 2018 and Bryan was cleared to return to action again, so he teamed up with Shane McMahon to beat Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn at WrestleMania 34.
Following a great 2018 that saw him regain the WWE Title one more time and then drop the WWE Title as a heel champion to Kofi Kingston at WrestleMania 35, Bryan was back in a babyface role. In February 2020, Bryan was matched up against his good friend Drew Gulak at the Elimination Chamber PPV. While Gulak has never reached the same heights as Bryan in WWE, he is a great technical wrestler like Bryan and because of that, their styles worked really well.
In an interview with Jimmy Traina on the Sports Illustrated Media Podcast, Danielson recalled a moment after the match where Vince McMahon yelled at him due to a dangerous spot in the match.
“Vince is very protective of me in almost like a fatherly type way. I was wrestling Drew Gulak at Elimination Chamber right before the pandemic. I took a German suplex that went a little bit wrong and I landed on my head. When I got to the back, Vince was so mad at me and he was like, it wasn’t anything about the performance. After he got mad at me, I said, ‘Was the match okay?’ ‘Yeah, the match was great, but you can’t do that.’ He doesn’t want me to get hurt. You don’t want your boss to get mad at you. I saw it as coming from a very loving perspective.”
If you want to see the German Suplex spot in question, go to 11:18 in the video below as Gulak launched Bryan across the ring and Bryan landed hard on his head/neck area. The referee immediately checked on Bryan to ensure that he was okay.
Prior to his first match in an AEW ring, Danielson wrote a letter thanking WWE for everything they did for his career and thanked “big man” Vince McMahon as well.