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Sunday, August 3, 2014

ANDRE..A Giant among men


I can happilly say that during my wrestling fandom down here in the colonies (starting in the laste 60's) that Ive had the great good fortune to see and occasionally meet some deadset legends of our sport...I met Bruiser Brody and Stan Hansen one night after the matches at South Sydney Juniors Rugby League Club....I met Animal and Hawk at the Brisbane Entertainment Centre (on the tour where Hawk was diagnosed with cardiomyopathy)...and then there was Andre, I got to spend a few minutes with the great man when he worked St George Leagues Club, I have to say, this was before  before Wrestlemania One, he still had long hair and moved pretty good.

Mind you, I'd been watching Andre since he started doing tours to Australia and I reckon I saw him either at TV tapings or live on everyone of them..

.the most resounding memory of the Giant was in a Russian Roulette match, or what the rest of the world called a Battle Royal, I had no idea why Barnett (or whoever was booking) called it that in Australia then and still dont....


Anyway, as per usual Andre was tossing blokes left, right and centre, until the only fellow left was Larry O'Dea and instead of chucking Larry, Andre split the cheque with him...the most amazing bit was Andre lifting Larry onto his shoulder...no small feat, Larry had to be 17 stone if he was an ounce.


At 7'4" and 500 pounds, Andre the Giant could have been famous for his size alone. His drive, talent and ambition, however, proved to be as big as Andre himself, and the wrestler became legendary for his achievements in and out of the ring.

Andre was born Andre Rene Roussimoff in Grenoble, France on May 19, 1946. His parents, Boris and Marian Roussimoff, and four siblings were of average size. Andre, however, suffered from acromegaly, a disease that results in an over abundance of growth hormones.


Also known as Giantism, this disease caused Andre's body to continue growing his whole life,  he displayed symptoms very early, reaching a height of 6'3" (190.5 cm) and a weight of 240 pounds (110 kg) by the age of 12.and by the time he was 17 he stood 6'7".

At age 17, Roussimoff moved to Paris and was taught the art of professional wrestling by a local promoter who recognized the earning potential of Roussimoff's size. He trained at night and worked as a mover during the day to pay living expenses. Roussimoff was billed as "Géant Ferré", taken from the name of a mythical French giant and began wrestling in Paris and nearby areas. 

Canadian promoter and wrestler Frank Valois met Roussimoff in 1966, becoming his business manager and adviser. Roussimoff began making a name for himself wrestling in the United Kingdom, Germany, Australia, New Zealand, and Africa.

Due to his immense stature it seemed inevitable that Andre would excel in the wrestling world. He had just started to make a name for himself in the ring as "Monster Eiffel Tower" or "Monster Roussimoff" when French-Canadian wrestler Edouard Carpentier first laid eyes on him. Carpentier was impressed with Andre's raw talent and decided to bring him to North America. 


Andre began wrestling under the name Jean Ferre in Canada for Grand Prix Promotions. In a short time Andre went from the undercard to being a headlining name. Inspired by the movie King Kong he acquired the nickname, "The 8th Wonder of the World," which stayed with him for the rest of his career.

He made his Japanese debut in 1970, billed as "Monster Roussimoff", wrestling for the International Wrestling Enterprise. Wrestling as both a singles and tag team competitor, he quickly won the company's tag team championship alongside Michael Nador. During his time in Japan, doctors first informed Roussimoff that he suffered from acromegaly.

Due to tape trading /selling I had quite a few Andre matches on VHS...his early matches against Hogan (with Fred Blassie) were quite good..yes, he wrestled Hulk BEFORE the heel turn, contrary to what Vince jnr fed his commentators at the time...he had wrestled with Hulk in the Gagne territory as well.

One famous tale of Andres career was the night he was in Memphis about to work with Lawler, The King said to him "Well Boss, how about I pin you tonight in the match, Andre being ever affiable said sure why not...and lo and behold Lawler (along with every heel on the Memphis roster) pinned Andre in the middle of the ring....



suffice it to say  when Vince Snr found out he was less than impressed and the edict was given that The Giant would never lose again...NO MATTER WHAT !...the real King of Wrestling had spoken.
By the time Andre had performed in front of 20,000 wrestling fans in Montreal, his legend had reached Vince McMahon, Sr. at the World Wide Wrestling Federation's (WWWF) headquarters. McMahon would forever alter Andre's life. 


In 1972, McMahon signed Andre to wrestle for the WWWF and changed his name to capitalize on his colossal size. "Andre the Giant" became one of the most recognizable names in wrestling. Andre performed under his new name at Madison Square Garden, where he easily defeated his opponent Buddy Wolfe without breaking a sweat.


 Before long, Andre's venues were sold out and wrestlers lined up to perform in his shadow. As Andre's fame grew to stardom, he was featured in Sports Illustrated in the largest feature they had ever published.


In 1987 Andre drew the "alledged" biggest crowd in WWF history thus far. Fans packed the Pontiac Silver Dome in Detroit, Michigan to watch Andre wrestle fellow legend Hulk Hogan in the main event of WrestleMania III. 


I can honestly say that I dont think the heel turn was warranted as Hulk and Andre for the belt would of drawn anyway..BUT...Vince jnr aint a big fan of Face v Face main events..then or now.


In all, Andre participated at six WrestleManias and faced some of the toughest opponents in the business, including Big John Studd and Jake "The Snake" Roberts. For many years he was known as the "Uncrowned Champion," .

  Andre captured many belts,  he also won titles in the (NWA), (IWA) and the WWF Tag Team Championship.


A GIANT DRINKER



Roussimoff has been unofficially crowned "The Greatest Drunk on Earth" for once consuming 119 12-US-fluid-ounce (350 ml) beers (over 41 litres) in 6 hours. 


On an episode of WWE's Legends of Wrestling, Mike Graham said André once drank 156, 16-US-fluid-ounce (470 ml) beers in one sitting, which was confirmed by Dusty Rhodes. In her autobiography, The Fabulous Moolah writes that André drank 127 beers in a Reading, Pennsylvania, hotel bar and later passed out in the lobby. The staff could not move him and had to leave him there until the giant awoke from his slumber.


When André underwent surgery in 1987, his size made it impossible for the anesthesiologist to estimate a dosage via standard methods; consequently, his alcohol tolerance ("it usually takes two liters of vodka just to make me feel warm inside") was used as a guideline instead.


Andre's fame also opened the door to Hollywood. He made his acting debut in 1975 as "Big Foot" in The Six Million Dollar Man. Andre enjoyed the experience and went on to appear in television shows including B.J. and the Bear, The Fall Guy and The Greatest American Hero, and movies such as Conan the Destroyer, Micki and Maude, and Trading Mom. His favorite role, and the one for which he is best remembered, was the lovable giant "Fezzik" in Rob Reiner's classic The Princess Bride.
Andre's last television appearance was on a celebration of 20 years of NWA/WCW wrestling on TBS. ....André was mentioned in the 1974 Guinness Book of World Records as the highest-paid wrestler in history to that time. He had earned US$400,000 in one year during the early 1970s.



Death
Roussimoff died in his sleep of congestive heart failure on the night of January 27, 1993, in a Paris hotel room. He was in Paris to attend the funeral of his father. Roussimoff's body was cremated according to his wishes and his ashes were scattered at his ranch in Ellerbe, North Carolina.


In a eulogy after his death, William Goldman, the author of the novel and the screenplay of The Princess Bride, wrote in his nonfiction work Which Lie Did I Tell? that André was one of the gentlest and most generous people he ever knew. Whenever André treated someone to a meal in a restaurant he would pay, but he would also insist on paying when he was a guest. After one meal, Arnold Schwarzenegger had quietly moved to the cashier to pay before André could, but then found himself being physically lifted, carried from his table, and deposited on top of his car by André and Wilt Chamberlain.




ANDRE'S MOVE SET
Double underhook suplex
Elbow drop
Sitdown splash
Signature moves
Bearhug
Big boot
Body slam
Chokehold
Open-handed chop
Headbutt
Knife-edged chop

Managers
Lou Albano
Ted DiBiase
Bobby Heenan
Frank Valois
K. Y. Wakamatsu




Nicknames
" Boss"
"The Eighth Wonder of the World"




Championships and accomplishments
Championship Wrestling from Florida
NWA Florida Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Dusty Rhodes
International Pro Wrestling
IWA World Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Michael Nador
New Japan Pro Wrestling
International Wrestling Grand Prix (1985)
MSG League (1982)
MSG Tag League (1981) – with Rene Goulet
Sagawa Express Cup (1986)
NWA Tri-State
NWA United States Tag Team Championship (Tri-State version) (1 time) – with Dusty Rhodes
Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame and Museum
Class of 2002
Pro Wrestling Illustrated
PWI Most Popular Wrestler of the Year (1977, 1982)
PWI Match of the Year (1981) vs. Killer Khan on 2 May
PWI Match of the Year (1988) vs. Hulk Hogan at The Main Event
PWI Most Hated Wrestler of the Year (1988)
PWI Editor's Award (1993)
PWI ranked him #3 in the PWI Years in 2003
Stampede Wrestling
Stampede Wrestling Hall of Fame
World Championship Wrestling (Australia)
NWA Austra-Asian Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Ron Miller
World Wrestling Federation
WWF Championship (1 time)
WWF Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Haku
WWF Hall of Fame (Class of 1993 - inaugural inductee)
Slammy Award for Bobby "The Brain" Heenan Scholarship Award (1987) with Haku, Tama, Hercules, King Kong Bundy, and Harley Race
Wrestling Observer Newsletter awards
Wrestling Observer Newsletter Hall of Fame (Class of 1996)



















Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Yes, YES, YES !...The life and times of Daniel Bryan or Brian Danielson...whichever




To say I was stunned when Bryan Danielson showed up on WWE tv with his name reversed is an understatement..I was gobsmacked, I never thought for a sec that he would fit into the “alledged” WWE Style..BUT...I was wrong, his held just about every belt and now after a rather torrid time since Summerslam , his got the big belt...YES , YES, YES...sorry, got carried away


Danielson is quite the belt collector, wait, that sounds like he buys em off Highspots..We all know you get the belt when you convinced creative you can carry the load and thus Daniel has amassed a collection of titles in his career thus far...He has won the ROH World Championship in Ring of Honor (ROH) once, the PWG World Championship twice in Pro Wrestling Guerrilla, and the wXw World Heavyweight Championship once in westside Xtreme wrestling. In addition, he has won the FIP Heavyweight Championship once in Full Impact Pro, the GHC Junior Heavyweight Championship once in Pro Wrestling Noah and is officially recognized as the final ROH Pure Champion, as he unified the Pure title with the ROH World title in 2006. He also won the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship in New Japan Pro Wrestling with Curry Man.




Until 2009, Danielson primarily competed on the indys. ROH was generally regarded as his home promotion, but he also worked in FIP, PWG, and the National Wrestling Alliance (NWA). He has also worked internationally, most notably in Pro Wrestling Noah through ROH's involvement in the Global Professional Wrestling Alliance, a global organization of cooperative promotions that allow their competitors to travel abroad to other companies.


 He also competed in a handful of matches in WWE before signing an actual contract with the company in 2009. In June 2010, shortly after the end of the first season of the WWE NXT show in which Danielson participated, WWE announced that he had been released from his contract. He returned to WWE in August at SummerSlam, and won the WWE United States Championship the following month. On July 17, 2011, Bryan won the SmackDown Money in the Bank ladder match......Danielson's first exposure in wrestling was as a backyard wrestler competing for Backyard Championship Wrestling (BCW) under his real name with the nickname "The Dagger". There he won the promotion's Heavyweight Championship. After Danielson graduated from high school in 1999, he decided to pursue wrestling professionally and initially attempted to train at Dean Malenko's wrestling school. 



Due to its subsequent closure, however, he instead trained under Shawn Michaels at the Texas Wrestling Academy. Danielson debuted in Michaels' promotion, the Texas Wrestling Alliance (TWA), and on March 21, 2000, he won his first professional wrestling championship, when he teamed with Spanky to win the TWA Tag Team Championship by defeating Jeromy Sage and Ruben Cruz.......As Danielson continued to tour the country, he was signed to a developmental deal by the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) to work in their developmental system where recently signed performers train and refine their skills before debuting on WWF's television programming.

Bryan was assigned to Memphis Championship Wrestling (MCW) where he gained exposure, and was trained by WWF competitor, William Regal. It was during this time that Danielson adopted his well-known moniker "American Dragon".....WWF severed its ties with MCW in 2001, releasing Danielson from his contract, but not before he won the MCW Light Heavyweight Championship and the MCW Tag Team Championship with Spanky.  



Danielson also toured Japan with the promotion, Frontier Martial-Arts Wrestling (FMW) with fellow trainee from the Texas Wrestling Academy, Lance Cade, competing in several tag team matches. He returned to the country after his release from the WWF, competing in Japan's premier promotion, New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW). In NJPW, he used his American Dragon persona, and donned a red, white, and blue mask reminiscent of a dragon. As a part of the junior heavyweight division, Danielson had success in both singles and tag team competition in the company, the latter of which culminated on March 12, 2004 when Danielson (sans mask) won the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship with Curry Man from division veterans, Jado and Gedo, on the Hyper Battle tour.



In 2002, Danielson joined Ring of Honor, where he is acknowledged as a "Founding Father" of the company by fans, as he was one of the wrestlers who made the company prominent during its inception, and competed in the main event of the company's debut show, The Era of Honor Begins, in a three-way match against Low Ki and Christopher Daniels.He had some deadset crackers during this time, including a match with Austin Aries that lasted for eighty minutes. One of the more interesting fueds he had in the early years in the company was with Homicide; the two embarked in numerous matches with a variety of stipulations, culminating in a steel cage match at The Final Showdown, which was won by Danielson.

At that time, Danielson had long been regarded as the best wrestler in ROH to have never held a major title belt; despite winning the company's inaugural Survival of the Fittest tournament in 2004, championship gold constantly eluded him. It came to the point where, in 2005, Danielson announced in the company's newsletter, the ROH Newswire, that he had quit ROH after being frustrated by his inability to defeat Austin Aries for the ROH World Championship. It was later revealed Danielson had become frustrated in general with professional wrestling and planned to take some time off to evaluate his career options. Danielson had several dates booked in Europe and Japan,  smarks believed that the periodical was likely a storyline claim for Danielson's absence during this period. In May 2005, rumors started that Total Nonstop Action Wrestling was interested in signing Danielson, and he also had some more tryout matches with WWE at that time, but none of these events led to anything, as he remained in ROH.

Danielson defeated James Gibson, yep, thats little redneck from Smackdown,  for the ROH World Championship at Glory by Honor IV on September 15, 2005. 



After winning the ROH World Championship, Danielson displayed traits of a heel-like persona, starting to behave more aggressively and threatening to the fans, as well as taking more liberties with the rules. Despite his rulebreaking character, he still retained a certain level of popularity with the fans, as well as his upholding of the company's Code of Honor, ROH's storyline rules of wrestler conduct, allowing him to perform as a more neutral character.
Applying a submission hold while the opponent gets a part of their body in the ring ropes, leading to the referee counting to five (not releasing the hold by the count of five would result in a disqualification); as the referee would be about to disqualify Danielson, the latter would release the hold, instructing the referee: "I have till five!"




During his initial reign as ROH World Champion, telling the ring announcer to add an extra note about him appertaining to the current circumstances around his match; this was generally insulting the crowd or his opponent....At the beginning of Danielson's ROH matches, the crowd chants, "You're gonna get your fucking head kicked in!" at Danielson's opponent.

The rest of the year saw Danielson have many successful title defenses, competing against all comers, even those from other companies, such as Pro Wrestling Noah star Naomichi Marufuji, at Final Battle 2005......At the beginning of 2006, Chris Hero, a representative from Combat Zone Wrestling (CZW), invaded ROH and targeted Danielson; this led to the two exchanging words over the Internet before having a match together with nearly the entire roster of both companies embarking on an interpromotional feud. Danielson became personally invested in this feud, and invaded CZW himself, which led to him having physical altercations with a number of CZW wrestlers. Hero intensified the rivalry, leading to the two wrestling at ROH's Hell Freezes Over event, where Danielson successfully defended the ROH World Championship. He soon filled the vacant slot on ROH's five-man team which participated in one of CZW's more popular attractions, a steel cage match called the Cage of Death, a ten-man tag team match that would have a man from each team start out in the cage, with one more random competitor entering into the match after an allotted amount of time. During the match he turned on his team by assaulting his rival, Samoa Joe, before leaving the match and effectively abandoning his involvement in the animosity between the two promotions. 





As the hostility with CZW heightened, Danielson also defended against challengers from the rival company, who had signed an open contract for any CZW wrestler willing to challenge for the ROH World Title. Former champion Samoa Joe also challenged Danielson during his constant defenses, only to have their match end in a sixty-minute draw.

Ring of Honor, while having the ROH World Championship, faced the issue of having another title with seemingly equal value, the ROH Pure Championship. This led to my ALL TIME favourite "tecinical" fued, Danielson and the ROH Pure Champion Nigel McGuinness.



They had a match to unify the titles. They met at April 29 in a match fought under pure wrestling rules and McGuinness left Danielson outside the ring after a chair shot to win by count out; this would be enough to win the Pure Title but not Danielson's World Title.




Then they had another unification match in McGuinness' native England where ROH declared there would be a winner, with a title changing hands by count out and disqualification, and a draw would force a restart. Danielson won the match on August 12 and retired the Pure Title as its last champion. They also had a match at Sydney University, that I got to see and I must say its my top ever technical match that I've seen in person.....After healing up an shoulder tendon injury. Danielson returned at Glory by Honor V: Night 2, and was challenged by Kenta, a guest competitor from Pro Wrestling Noah, due to the two company's talent exchange agreement; Danielson again retained his championship. At Final Battle 2006, Danielson's fifteen-month title reign finally ended after losing to Homicide, and he subsequently took time off from wrestling in order to heal his shoulder......Danielson made his return to the company at Reborn Again where he defeated Shane Hagadorn and Adam Pearce in separate matches. On May 12 Ring of Honor filmed its first pay-per-view, Respect is Earned, which had Danielson team with ROH World Champion, Takeshi Morishima, to take on Nigel McGuinness and Kenta; Danielson's team scored the win, as Danielson made Kenta tap out to his signature submission hold, the Cattle Mutilation, hows that for a name for a finisher. 


Danielson made his return to contention for the ROH World title by defeating Nigel McGuinness at Domination, which would appear on the company's next pay per view, Driven. This allowed him to, now as a heroic character, challenge Morishima for the title at Manhattan Mayhem in a losing effort; he also suffered a legitimate detached retina. Following a subsequent surgery, Danielson returned to challenge Morishima once more, leading to a match at Man Up that had the referee stop the match due to Danielson being unable to respond to him. . Morishima returned to the company at Final Battle 2008, in a match billed as a "Fight Without Honor", which allowed both men to use weapons, which Danielson won.

Over the coming months Danielson worked with Austin Aries again as friendly rivals, exchanging victories including a match on pay-per-view at Take No Prisoners, which was won by Danielson. Danielson also aided Aries by becoming his partner in order to take on The Age of the Fall as revenge for Aries. The two wrestled all members of the group in a series of different stipulation matches, as well as teaming together frequently to challenge members Jimmy Jacobs and Tyler Black for the ROH World Tag Team Championship.



 ROH  had a talent trade agreement with Pro Wrestling Noah, the company held a show in Japan on September 14 entitled the Tokyo Summit, where Danielson wrestled GHC Junior Heavyweight Champion, Yoshinobu Kanemaru, and won the championship. Following his victory, he was interviewed, and announced that Noah would allow him defend the title in Ring of Honor, with his first defense being at Glory By Honor VII, defeating Katsuhiko Nakajima, a competitor from the Kensuke Office, another member promotion of the GPWA. This would ultimately be his only successful defense, however, as he would return to Japan on October 13 to lose the title to Kenta. Following his loss, Danielson challenged McGuinness for the title at the next ROH pay per view, Rising Above in a losing effort.








Ring of Honor made its national television debut with the program, Ring of Honor Wrestling, and Danielson made his television debut in the main event of its third episode by defeating Austin Aries. The following episode to feature Danielson had him wrestle Tyler Black, which ended in a draw. This was the start of a rivalry between the two that was highlighted by Danielson's respect for Tyler, even claiming Black would be the top star in the future, with Danielson's antithesis being that would not happen for a while, leading to the two have many more matches that kept the notion of neither man truly being better. At this point, as well, Danielson became more involved in trying to win the ROH World Tag Team title, so, out of respect to his rival, had chosen Black to be his partner. The two attempted to win the title multiple times, leading to a conflict, dismantling the partnership.....

FUN FACT : At the beginning of Danielson's ROH matches the crowd chanted, "You're gonna get your fucking head kicked in!" at Danielson's opponent.


During his time as World Champion, ROH appointed Danielson the head trainer of the ROH Wrestling Academy, replacing Austin Aries. He relinquished the position to Delirious in 2007.




On August 23, it was announced Danielson signed a deal with WWE; prior to joining the company, he embarked on a farewell tour with ROH known as The Final Countdown Tour, which saw him challenge Aries for the title again in a losing effort. On September 26 at Glory by Honor VIII: The Final Countdown, he won his last match in the company against Nigel McGuinness, who was also having his final match with the company.


Aside from competing primarily in ROH, Danielson has also competed in a multitude of other independent promotions, both in the United States and abroad. In 2003, Danielson also toured the United Kingdom for British promotion, All Star Wrestling. While he was in the UK, Danielson won the World Heavy Middleweight Championship on May 6 in an 8 Man One Night Tournament in Croydon defeating James Mason. He spent the next 6 months in the UK, working for ASW, FWA, WAW and Premier Promotions. He returned several times over the next 5 years, working for various promotions. In February 2005, at New Dawn Rising, Danielson made his debut in ROH's sister promotion, Full Impact Pro (FIP), teaming up with Rocky Romero in a match against Austin Aries and Homicide. 





The next night at Dangerous Intentions Danielson competed in a losing effort against CM Punk, which led to a brief feud between the two. Danielson's biggest success came in 2006 by winning the FIP World Heavyweight Championship, holding the belt for eleven months before losing it to Roderick Strong. Danielson wrestled his last match for FIP in December 2006 at Florida Rumble, in a losing effort to Erick Stevens.




Danielson has also wrestled in PWG . He made his debut in November 2003 at An Inch Longer Than Average, in a losing effort to PWG Champion Frankie Kazarian. He continued to appear in PWG over the next couple of years, winning the PWG World Championship in 2007, and holding it for six months before taking an eleven-month hiatus from the company. He made his return to PWG at the 2008 Battle of Los Angeles tournament. In May 2009, he made another appearance teaming with Paul London, referring to himself as American Dolphin in a parodied manner. On September 4, 2009, at Guerre Sans Frontières, during his last night in PWG, Danielson defeated Chris Hero to win the PWG World Championship for the second time and immediately vacated it afterward.



Following his return from his injury in 2007, the National Wrestling Alliance (NWA) published a video of Danielson stating his intent to challenge for the NWA World Heavyweight Championship, as the establishment that sanctioned the title at the time, Total Nonstop Action Wrestling, was relinquishing the title back to the NWA. A tournament, entitled Reclaiming the Glory, was held to determine the new champion with Danielson making his way to finals, scheduled to compete face Brent Albright on September 1, but due to the eye injury he sustained at Manhattan Mayhem, the NWA announced he withdrew from the tournament with and Adam Pearce replacing him; Danielson was appointed the referee of the match.

In 2009, Danielson's contract with Ring of Honor expired; this opened up Danielson to travel to other companies more freely while competing in his home promotion. He made his debut with  Chikara to compete in their King of Trios tournament, which saw him team with Claudio Castagnoli and Dave Taylor in a contingency called Team Uppercut. In the same year, it was announced Danielson would compete in Dragon Gate USA in their second show, which saw him lose to Open the Dream Gate Champion Naruki Doi.



On August 23, 2009, ROH announced that Danielson had signed a deal with WWE Danielson made his debut as a WWE contracted wrestler on January 4, 2010, in a dark match prior to Raw, defeating Chavo Guerrero. Later that week it was reported that Danielson had requested to go to Florida Championship Wrestling (FCW), the WWE developmental territory, to acclimate himself to his new work environment and work on what he saw as "ring rust". He made his debut at the FCW television tapings on January 14, where he was defeated by Kaval (low Ki). At the February 11 tapings, Danielson was renamed Daniel Bryan.




On February 16, it was announced that he would be wrestling on the first season of the WWE NXT show, using the name Daniel Bryan, with The Miz as his storyline mentor, which irritated me no end. He made his debut on the inaugural episode of NXT on February 23, losing by submission to the World Heavyweight Champion, Chris Jericho. ....Bryan earned his first victory on the May 10 episode of Raw by pinning Santino Marella in an eight-on-four handicap match. The following night on NXT, he was eliminated from the show, along with Michael Tarver, Later that night, in an interview, Danielson said that the elimination might be the end of Daniel Bryan, but that Bryan Danielson will be fine. Despite his elimination, he appeared on the following editions of NXT, being interviewed by Matt Striker and attacking both Michael Cole, who had constantly belittled him on commentary...which quite frankly gave me the shits...mainly due to Coles horrid over acting.... the May 31 episode of Raw, Bryan defeated The Miz in a singles match, and after the match, he threw The Miz into Cole, who was commentating at ringside, on Raw, the season one NXT's interfered in the main event match between John Cena and CM Punk, attacking both competitors, the announce team, and the ring announcer Justin Roberts, before dismantling the ring area and surrounding equipment, turning Bryan and the other rookies heels in the process. On June 11, WWE announced via their official website that Danielson had been released from his WWE contract. It was later reported by the Wrestling Observer that his release was due to him strangling Roberts with his own tie during the segment on the June 7 episode of Raw, which WWE felt was too violent for their TV-PG programming. His release was put in a storyline, where the rest of the NXT rookies kicked him out of the group for showing remorse for his actions and declared he would not be seen in the WWE again.



In 2010, Danielson made his return to the independent circuit, defeating Eddie Kingston at the Chikara event We Must Eat Michigan's Brain in Taylor, Michigan. Rather than receiving streamers, the fans instead threw neck ties in light of the Justin Roberts incident in WWE. The following day at Chikara's Faded Scars and Lines Danielson defeated Young Lions Cup holder Tim Donst in a non–title match. .....On July 23 Danielson debuted in the fledgling Evolve promotion, which was originally conceived to be built around Danielson as their top star before he signed to WWE. In the main event, he defeated Bobby Fish who went 0–4 in the company, while Danielson continued on undefeated the following day by returning to Dragon Gate USA, and submitted Shingo in the dark match main event Return of the Dragon. After the match Danielson joined BxB Hulk, Masato Yoshino, Naruki Doi and PAC as the fifth member of the stable World–1. On July 30 Danielson returned to Pro Wrestling Guerrilla, competing in a match where he defeated Roderick Strong. On August 7 Danielson unsuccessfully challenged Adam Pearce for the NWA World Heavyweight Championship at the NWA Legends Fanfest.



Despite returning to WWE, Danielson honoured most of his independent bookings, making his first appearance on August 20 and defeating Jon Moxley at Heartland Wrestling Association's Road to Destiny. The following day he was defeated by Drake Younger at Insanity Pro Wrestling's Ninth Anniversary Reign of the Insane. The day after that Danielson defeated J Freddie at a Squared Circle Wrestling event. On September 10 he returned to the IWA, using the name Daniel Bryan, and lost the IWA Puerto Rico Heavyweight Championship to Dennis Rivera.....Danielson returned to Evolve, defeating Munenori Sawa in the main event. Later that same night Danielson wrestled for New York Wrestling Connection in a tag team match, where he and Tony Nese defeated Dimitrios Papadon and Alex Reynolds. On September 25 Danielson returned to Dragon Gate USA and defeated YAMATO in the main event of the evening. The following day Danielson defeated Jon Moxley. On October 1 Danielson wrestled the last of his independent matches by defeating Shelton Benjamin at a Northeast Wrestling event.

WWE (2010–2011)

On August 15, 2010, Danielson returned to WWE as Daniel Bryan at the SummerSlam pay-per-view, where he was revealed as the surprise seventh member of Team WWE for the seven-on-seven elimination tag team match against The Nexus, the other NXT season one competitors. At the event, Bryan was one of the two final members of Team WWE, and managed to eliminate two members of the Nexus, but was eliminated by Wade Barrett after his former pro The Miz, whose place he took in Team WWE, attacked him. Despite this, Team WWE won the match. The following night, he was revealed as part of the Raw roster....He had a short fued with Miz..which is more notoriety that Mizanan actally deserves ( SMARK ALERT)




At Night of Champions, Bryan defeated The Miz to win the WWE United States Championship, his first championship in WWE. He then successfully defended the championship two weeks later, by defeating The Miz and John Morrison in a triple threat submissions count anywhere match at Hell in a Cell, and successfully defended it against Ted DiBiase at Survivor Series. 





 On the March 14 episode of Raw, Bryan lost the United States Championship to Sheamus. Bryan was originally scheduled to wrestle Sheamus for the United States Championship at WrestleMania XXVII on the main card, but, Vince, creative OR SOMEBODY, lost their goddamn mind and the match was rescheduled as a pre-show dark match, a lumberjack match that ended in a no contest when the lumberjacks fought among themselves to trigger the start of a battle royal. 



At Money in the Bank, Bryan defeated Cody Rhodes, Justin Gabriel, Heath Slater, Kane, Sheamus, Sin Cara and Wade Barrett to win the Money in the Bank ladder match and earn the right to challenge for the World Heavyweight Championship whenever and wherever he wanted, within the next year. On the July 22 edition of SmackDown, Bryan declared he would cash in his Money in the Bank briefcase at WrestleMania XXVIII. Throughout the later half of 2011, Bryan would be put into a feud with World Heavyweight Champion Mark Henry, in which after two losses to Henry, Henry nearly put Bryan into the Hall Of Pain twice, only for Big Show to save Bryan, on the second match, Big Show nearly had Bryan cash in his money in the bank contract only for Henry to escape. On November 25 tapings of Smackdown, Bryan cashed in his MITB contract successfully on Henry, only for Teddy Long to revoke the match and give Bryan the MITB back due to Henry's injuries. After winning Number One Contendership by making Cody Rhodes tap, Bryan would lose a World Title Steel Cage Match to Henry the following Tuesday in a Holiday Edition of Smackdown. After losing the World Title Match, Bryan would re-ignite his feud with Micheal Cole.



At TLC 2011, Daniel Bryan would win the World Heavyweight Championship. The following night on Raw Supershow he teamed with real-life friends and fellow Champions CM Punk and Zack Ryder(as TLC Trio to defeat The Miz, Alberto Del Rio and Dolph Ziggler. The following Smackdown, Bryan beat Ziggler, making a winning streak. On the January 6, 2012 edition of Smackdown, Daniel showed signs of a heel turn getting disqualified to retain the World Heavyweight Championship against the Big Show after making Mark Henry angry and causing Henry to push him. 





The following week in a No DQ match against Big Show for the title, after several attempts to pin Show, and making Show angry, Bryan hit Show with a chair and Show chased Bryan halfway around the outside of the ring only to crash into AJ Lee, who was playing D Bry girlfriend, thus causing a no contest. After the match, Bryan showed extreme anger at Big Show, claming if he wanted to World Title he could have it but Show couldn't be so reckless.  It was announced Bryan would defend the title against Mark Henry a week later. In his World Title defense in a Lumberjack Match was again turned into a no contest after the lumberjacks attacked each other. It was announced Bryan would be defending the title at the Rumble against Big Show and Mark Henry. With the 4 consecutive title defenses, Bryan is the most defended champion since Edge in 2011. On the final Smackdown before the Royal Rumble, Bryan attacked Big Show with a steel chair. At the Rumble, Bryan would defend the title against Big Show and Mark Henry which he came out victorious. In February, Bryan would get into a 4 match mini-feud with real-life friend and WWE Champion CM Punk and would turn heel for the first time since joining WWE siding with John Laurinitus. Bryan would then successfully defend the World title at Elimination Chamber 2012 and would defend the title against the Royal Rumble 2012 winner, Sheamus at WrestleMania XXVIII. At WrestleMania, Bryan lost his title to Sheamus in 18 seconds due to Bryan being distracted by AJ when she kissed him and got kicked in the face by Sheamus right after. On the next episode of Smackdown, Bryan blamed AJ for his loss at WrestleMania and ended their "relationship"




At Extreme Rules 2012, Bryan failed to capture the World Heavyweight Championship to Sheamus in a 2 out of 3 falls match, with 2-1. The next night on Raw, Bryan became the #1 Contender for the WWE Championship by beating Jerry Lawler in a Beat The Clock Challenge match in under 3 minutes, beating Randy Orton's time at 4:16. Bryan would then face CM Punk at the Over The Limit 2012. On the May 4 edition of Smackdown, Bryan would go up against Sheamus but the match was interfered when Alberto Del Rio and Ricardo Rodriguez ganged up on Sheamus, injuring his left arm.. Then on Raw, Bryan teamed up with Lord Tensai in a 2 on 1 handicap match against CM Punk , Bryan and Cody Rhodes lost to CM Punk and Santino Marella



THEN came my favourite Punk Dbry match of the modern era, at Over The Limit, when Bryan failed to capture the WWE Championship against CM Punk.

Bryan continued the feud with CM Punk, and was made number one contender again for Money in the Bank, and on the June 29, edition of Smackdown, Bryan discoved AJ was made the Special Referee for the WWE title match. Which he lost, ending his feud with Punk, Bryan would then propose to AJ, to which she accepted, on Raw 1000, AJ left him at the alter to become GM of Raw. The following two weeks, Bryan would show intense paranoia, with the fans constantly chanting "Yes! Yes! Yes!" and combined with AJ leaving him, Bryan had some anger issues to say the least



AJ continued to piss Dan off  by denying him a WWE Championship shot and instead forcing him to face Kane at SummerSlam, As a result of Bryan and Kane's issues, AJ enrolled them in anger management classes hosted by Dr. Shelby, and they were later forced to "hug it out". At the arrangement of Dr. Shelby and AJ, the two adversaries formed a team whose constant bickering and infighting even during matches inadvertently resulted in them defeating The Prime Time Players (Titus O'Neil and Darren Young) to become the number one contenders to the WWE Tag Team Championship on the September 10 Raw  and then defeating champions Kofi Kingston and R-Truth to win the Tag Team Championship at Night of Champions  The following week on Raw, "Team Hell No" was chosen as the official team name via a Twitter poll 



On Raw, after Kane lost to WWE Champion CM Punk in a non-title match, he was assaulted by The Shield (Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns). Bryan and Ryback, who both attempted to save Kane, suffered a similar fate. This attack had the effect of uniting Bryan and Kane, and after The Shield and Team Hell No, along with (former NXT rookie) Ryback, attacked each other on the December 3 Raw, all six men were decreed to face each other in a Tables, Ladders, and Chairs match at TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs, where The Shield was victorious after pinning Bryan. Team Hell No went on to defend the Tag Team titles through the end of the year, 



On January 27 at the 2013 Royal Rumble, Team Hell No retained the WWE Tag Team Championship against Team Rhodes Scholars.During the Royal Rumble Match, Bryan eliminated Kane and was in turn thrown out of the ring by Antonio Cesaro; Kane caught Bryan before he touched the floor and despite Bryan's begging, dropped him to complete Bryan's elimination.




On the February 4 Raw, Bryan was inserted into the World Heavyweight Championship number one contender Elimination Chamber match when he defeated Rey Mysterio, after which, the returning Mark Henry attacked both men. On February 17 at Elimination Chamber, Bryan was the first man eliminated from the match, courtesy of Henry. On April 7 at WrestleMania 29, Team Hell No defeated Dolph Ziggler and Big E Langston for another successful title defense. Team Hell No rekindled their rivalry with The Shield the following night on Raw, after saving The Undertaker from an ambush by them. On the April 22 Raw, Team Hell No and The Undertaker were defeated by the Shield in a six-man tag team match.....As Bryan being pinned led to the loss of the tag titles, Bryan became obsessed about proving that he was not the weak link of Team Hell No. As a result, Bryan went a bit birko, but, his behavior led to Team Hell No losing their rematch against Reigns and Rollins on the May 27 Raw.  During this storyline, Bryan was praised as the best performer in WWE and having an unmatched connection with crowds by critics, peers and veterans of the professional wrestling industry. 

On SmackDown, Bryan ended the Shield's unpinned and unsubmitted streak in televised six-man tag matches by forcing Rollins to submit in a match with Kane and Orton as his tag partners. 



Bryan and Orton faced off in a no disqualification match that Orton won via referee stoppage after Bryan suffered a legitimate nerve injury. Four days later on SmackDown, Bryan defeated Orton, but to Bryan's dismay, it was via count-out. On the next Raw, Bryan decisively defeated Orton via submission in a street fight, and later continued his hot streak by picking up wins over Sheamus and Christian. On July 14 at Money in the Bank, Bryan competed in the WWE Championship Money in the Bank ladder match; during the match, Bryan was attacked by Curtis Axel, a non-participant, which ultimately prevented Bryan from winning the match that was won by Orton.




The following night on Raw, WWE Champion John Cena picked Bryan to be his opponent for the WWE title match at SummerSlam. This led to Bryan being embroiled in the McMahon family's internal feud, with WWE Chairman Vince McMahon against Bryan due to Bryan's image not fitting the mold of McMahon's typical "WWE Superstar", while WWE COO Triple H was in support of Bryan. On Raw, Bryan ran a gauntlet match to prove his worth as number one contender, defeating Jack Swagger and Antonio Cesaro in succession, while his third opponent Ryback was disqualified after powerbombing Bryan through a table. The following week on Raw, Bryan was forced to face Kane and emerged victorious, but Kane attacked Bryan after the match.



 On August 18 at SummerSlam, Bryan defeated Cena to win his first WWE Championship. However, after the match, special referee Triple H attacked Bryan, leading to Randy Orton cashing in his Money in the Bank contract to win the title from Bryan....I for one didnt see that coming ....The next night on Raw, Triple H and the McMahons endorsed Orton as "the face of the WWE", forming The Authority faction, claiming that the company was looking for Orton as champion instead of Bryan. Bryan also assumed the top babyface role in WWE with Cena being out injured. With Triple H threatening to fire anyone who disobeyed him, Bryan was left alone to take on and suffer attacks from Orton and the Shield.




 On September 15 at Night of Champions, Bryan defeated Orton to regain the WWE Championship, but was stripped of the title the following night on Raw by Triple H after referee Scott Armstrong admitted he had made a fast-count the previous night resulting in Bryan's win, while Bryan denied that Armstrong was working for him. This resulting in his second WWE Championship reign coming to an end, meaning Bryan hasn't held the WWE Championship for one full day over his two reigns as the WWE Champion.



 Bryan and Orton faced off again for the vacant title on October 6 at WWE Battleground, but the match ended in a no contest after Big Show interfered and knocked out both men. Bryan once again challenged Orton for the vacant championship at Hell in a Cell, but was unsuccessful after the special guest referee Shawn Michaels superkicked Bryan for attacking Michaels' best friend Triple H.



The following night on Raw, Bryan confronted Michaels, who offered a handshake, but Bryan put Michaels in the "Yes!" Lock. Later in the night, Bryan was attacked by The Wyatt Family. As a result, Bryan allied himself with CM Punk, and the duo defeated Luke Harper and Erick Rowan of the Wyatt Family at Survivor Series, but the entire Wyatt Family defeated Bryan in a handicap match at TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs, with Wyatt attempting to recruit Bryan in the previous weeks. On the final Raw of 2013, Bryan defeated Harper and then Rowan in a gauntlet match so that he could face Wyatt, whereupon Harper and Rowan interfered for a disqualification and beat him down. Bryan then acknowledged that no matter how many times the fans chanted "Yes!" or supported him, it wasn't enough for "the machine", so he gave up and decided to join the Wyatt Family. On the January 13 Raw, after the Wyatt Family punished him for their lack of success since he joined, Bryan attacked all the other members of the Wyatt Family to break free from the group....I for one didnt get the length of the storyline...in the scheme of things, it was a commercial




At the Royal Rumble pay-per-view, despite Bryan losing to Wyatt in a singles match and later not participating in the Royal Rumble match, the audience continued to chant for Bryan during the Rumble match and the WWE World Heavyweight Championship match.

On the January 27 Raw, Bryan qualified for the Elimination Chamber match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at the eponymous pay-per-view by teaming up with John Cena and Sheamus to defeat the Shield via disqualification. Meanwhile, he also continued his feud with the Authority, as Kane attacked him on multiple occasions, attempting to injure Bryan before his Elimination Chamber match At the Elimination Chamber event, Bryan survived until he was one of the final two participants in the Elimination Chamber match, but defending champion Randy Orton retained after Kane interfered against Bryan.



 On the March 10 Raw, Bryan and the YES Movement occupied the ring and refused to leave, resulting in an irate Triple H agreeing to Bryan's demand for a match at WrestleMania XXX with the stipulation that if Bryan won, he would be inserted into the WWE World Heavyweight Championship match at the event.




At Wrestlemania, Daniel Bryan defeated Triple H, and was inserted into the title match  He went into the main event with a badly injured shoulder but defeated Randy Orton and Batista to win the WWE World Heavyweight Championship by making Batista submit....



.next night on RAW Triple H tried to get the belt back by getting Dan beat down..BUT...The Shield helped out and Dan hit the running knee on the COO for the win....its gonna get interesting



During his time in Ring of Honor Danielson made his way to the ring to his entrance song, "The Final Countdown"; once in the ring, he stood on the top turnbuckle and sang the refrain along with the fans in attendance.




After winning the ROH World Championship, Danielson displayed traits of a heel-like persona, starting to behave more aggressively and threatening to the fans, as well as taking more liberties with the rules. Despite his rulebreaking character, he still retained a certain level of popularity with the fans, as well as his upholding of the company's Code of Honor, ROH's storyline rules of wrestler conduct, allowing him to perform as a more neutral character.

As a heel, applying a submission hold while the opponent gets a part of their body in the ring ropes, leading to the referee counting to five (not releasing the hold by the count of five would result in a disqualification); as the referee would be about to disqualify Danielson, the latter would release the hold, instructing the referee: "I have till five!"





During his initial reign as ROH World Champion, telling the ring announcer to add an extra note about him appertaining to the current circumstances around his match; this was generally insulting the crowd or his opponent.





Similar to Punks "Straight Edge" real life gimmick, Danielson, who at one time was a vegan in his day-to-day life, previously incorporated his vegan lifestyle into his heel persona to elicit heat from the crowd.

Danielson has cited a number of wrestlers as influences to his style: Toshiaki Kawada, Mitsuharu Misawa, and William Regal. He has also made mention of modeling his wrestling off of the work of Dean Malenko and Chris Benoit in his early career, then using Jujutsu as a platform to develop his own style. In 2009 Danielson relocated to Las Vegas, Nevada, where he has began training in mixed martial arts at Randy Couture's Xtreme Couture gym.









Cattle Mutilation (Bridging grounded double chickenwing)
Crossface chickenwing, sometimes with bodyscissors>
Double wrist-clutch to a grounded opponent followed by repeated stomps to the chest, face, and head
Dragon suplex
LeBell Lock (Omoplata crossface) – 2010
Regal-Plex (Bridging leg hook belly to back suplex) – adopted from his trainer William Regal
Repeated elbow strikes to the side of the opponent's head while holding the opponent in a grounded crucifix
Small package
Triangle choke, sometimes with repeated elbow strikes to the top of the opponent's head
As Daniel Bryan
LeBell Lock (Now called the Yes or No! Lock) (Omoplata crossface)
Roundhouse kick
Guillotine choke
Busukai Knee Strike 2013 - present 
Signature moves
Airplane spin
Danielson Special (Double underhook suplex floated over into a crucifix armbar)
Diving headbutt
European uppercut
Indian deathlock
Diving Front Missile Dropkick 
Heel hook
Multiple suplex variations
Belly to back, sometimes from the top rope
Cravate
Kick - Out Suplex
Brigding German Suplex
Northern Lights
Snap Suplex
Bridging Tiger Suplex
Bridging Fisherman Suplex
Repeated shoot kicks to the chest and head
Roaring Elbow (Discus elbow smash)
Rolling fireman's carry slam
Running big boot
Springboard suicide senton
Surfboard


Managers
Dave Prazak
The Bella Twins
Gail Kim
AJ Lee

Nicknames
'Flying Goat'''''
"The American Dragon"
'Submission Specialist''''
"The American Dolphin" (PWG)
"The Best Wrestler in the World"
"The Dagger"
"The Master of the Small Package"
"Goat Face"
"The Tag Team Champions"
"World's Toughest Vegan"

Entrance themes
"Self Esteem" by The Offspring
"Turn Turn Turn" by The Byrds 2005 Ted Petty Invitational
"Obsession" by Animotion
"The Final Countdown" by Europe
"The Rage" by Burnout Paradise
"Ride of the Valkyries" by Richard Wagner
"Freefall" by Two Steps From Hell
"Big Epic Thing" by Jim Johnston
"Flight of the Valkyries" by Richard Wagner and Jim Johnston


All Pro Wrestling
APW Worldwide Internet Championship (1 time)
King of the Indies (2001)
All Star Wrestling
ASW World Heavy Middleweight Championship (1 time)
East Coast Wrestling Association
ECWA Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Low Ki
Evolve
Match of the Year (2010) vs. Munenori Sawa on September 11
Extreme Canadian Championship Wrestling
NWA Canadian Junior Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
Full Impact Pro
FIP Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
International Wrestling Association
IWA Puerto Rico Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
Memphis Championship Wrestling
MCW Southern Light Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
MCW Southern Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Spanky
NWA Mid-South
NWA Southern Junior Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
New Japan Pro Wrestling
IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Curry Man
Best of the American Super Juniors (2004)
Pro Wrestling Illustrated
PWI ranked him #13 of the best 500 singles wrestlers in the PWI 500 in 2008
Pro Wrestling Guerrilla
PWG World Championship (2 times)
Pro Wrestling Noah
GHC Junior Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
Pro Wrestling Report
Independent Wrestler of the Year (2006)
Ring of Honor
ROH Pure Championship (1 time)
ROH World Championship (1 time)
Survival of the Fittest (2004)
Texas Wrestling Alliance
TWA Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Spanky
westside Xtreme wrestling
wXw World Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
Ambition 1 (2010)
World Series Wrestling
WSW Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
World Wrestling Entertainment/WWE
World Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
WWE Championship (2 times)
WWE Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Kane
WWE United States Championship (1 time)
Money in the Bank (SmackDown 2011)
Slammy Award for Cole in Your Stocking (2010) – attacking Michael Cole on NXT
Slammy Award for Shocker of the Year (2010) – the début of The Nexus
Slammy Award for Tweet of the Year (2012) - "Goat face is a horrible insult. My face is practically perfect in every way. In fact, from now on I demand to be called Beautiful Bryan."
Slammy Award for Facial Hair of the Year (2012)
Slammy Award for Upset of the Year (2012) - Defeating Mark Henry and Big Show at Royal Rumble
Slammy Award for Couple of the Year (2013) - with Brie Bella
Slammy Award for Catchphrase of the Year (2013) - YES! YES! YES!
Slammy Award for Beard of the Year (2013)
Slammy Award for Superstar of the Year (2013)
Slammy Award for Fan Participation of the Year (2013) - YES! YES! YES!
Wrestling Observer Newsletter
Most Outstanding Wrestler (2006–2010)
Best Technical Wrestler (2005–2012)
Match of the Year (2007) vs. Takeshi Morishima on August 25