Daniel Bryan's contract with WWE doesn't end when most people expect it to.
Speaking to TVLine, the former WWE Champion was asked about his intentions once his current deal expires. Bryan has made it no secret that he wants to focus on his family and has often mentioned on SmackDown that this is perhaps his final "run." Asked whether he sees himself wrestling part-time or transitioning into a backstage role once September rolls around, and his contract presumably ends, Bryan said the following:
"It’s funny that people gravitate towards the date “September,” and I think it’s because that’s when my last contract ended, but it doesn’t end in September. [Note: Bryan was tight-lipped about when his contract actually runs out.] I’m still trying to figure out what that looks like… I had a tag team match on SmackDown last Friday, and it was a lot of fun, but my neck was just wrecked. I’m going to be 40 in May and my daughter likes to get on my shoulders to pick leaves from a Japanese maple in front of our house [and he couldn’t this time due to the pain]. You get to that point where it’s like, how long can I do this full-time and still be able to do those kinds of things with my daughter? What’s the right balance between part-time and that sort of thing? It may be that it’s just every once in a while when the urge strikes, or maybe like a schedule where it’s like eight months on, these months off."
It was reported in July 2018 that Bryan had signed a new contract with WWE, extending him beyond the initial end date of September 2018.
Bryan is still trying to figure out what amount of work he wants to commit to and is taking the time to figure it out. Luckily for him, as an independent contractor, he has that luxury. That said, he is trying to be as responsible and respectful of an employee as possible. He added this:
"One of the coolest things about wrestling, and just be being an independent contractor in general, is that you can say, “Well, I really only want to do this amount of work.” What that amount of work is, I have no idea yet. I still have to figure it out. But I also need to be respectful of the people who are relying on me to go to work. I have to give them an answer sooner rather than later. I’m trying to figure that out, trying to be responsible as an employee of somebody who’s taken care of our family very well. But then also, trying to take the time to figure it out."
On the April 30 episode of Friday Night SmackDown, Daniel Bryan lost to Roman Reigns in a Universal Championship Match. As a result, he is now banished from the blue brand. When or whether he appears on another one of WWE's programs remains to be seen.
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