Recently returning to his home in Aberdeen, Washington, Daniel Bryan was interviewed by ESPN and discussed his comeback to the pro wrestling ring. When Bryan returned to WrestleMania in his tag team match with Shane McMahon against Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn, there was a "wait and see" approach regarding how much he will be in the ring following that bout.
Now, Bryan is back to wrestling frequently, and is even competing in live events. However, Bryan stated that his last full-time year in the ring he wrestled 227 matches, and he does not want to do that again. He also wants to phase some of his signature moves, such as his suicide dive through the ropes, in order to increase the longevity of his career.
"Realistically, I want to wrestle until I'm 70," said Bryan. "That's a goal to people that sounds insane, but there's a MMA trainer, Firas Zahabi, he trains Georges St-Pierre and he was on Joe Rogan's podcast and I love what he said because this is how I envision my life. He said, 'I want to be grappling and doing jiu-jitsu the day before I die.' He wants to live to be 90 years old, but he loves doing this so much he wants to physically be capable of doing it until the day before he dies because it brings him joy and that's how I feel about wrestling. For me, my goal is to enjoy this moment that I have in the WWE spotlight because that doesn't last forever. That really has taken hold since I was forced to retire. You have to appreciate every moment of this, but I also have to transition my style in a way that I could still be wrestling when I'm 70 years old. I want to transition my style slowly to something that's a little bit easier on my body."
Bryan was even more inspired to transition his in-ring style after watching an indie match last year between Jerry Lawler (68) and Terry Funk (74), and they stole the show by throwing punches and fireballs at each other.
Bryan also has a goal for his little daughter, Birdie, to see him in the ring.
"I'm hoping to wrestle long enough where she can remember seeing her dad wrestle," Bryan said. "It'd be really cool for me to experience that. I'm looking forward to having Birdie really understand what she's seeing and me still being able to wrestle and her knowing what her dad did and what her dad loved. The WWE has been very accommodating to me in terms of reducing my schedule so I have a better life balance now as far as spending time at work and spending time at home with my baby."
Bryan will be competing against The Miz at SummerSlam, but it does not seem like this will be the end of his tenure with the WWE. He stated that his list of WWE dream matches currently include Goldberg, Johnny Gargano, Roderick Strong, Shinsuke Nakamura, and Andrade "Cien" Almas. AJ Styles is also on this list, although they did compete on an episode of SmackDown Live.
"So Andrade is a true luchador, who main evented arenas in Mexico as a luchador and I want to go out there and I want to wrestle him," Bryan said. "I have all these dream scenarios in my head where I would love to do this and that. I think that's one of things that's makes me so passionate about wrestling – the variety."