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File:Danielson Champion 5131.jpg


Bryan Danielson is a professional wrestler who wrestled for several independent promotions throughout the 2000s (most notably, Ring of Honor, where he spent years as one of the company's top guys) before signing with WWE in 2009, eventually appearing on WWE's NXT promotion as Daniel Bryan. He currently competes on the Smackdown brand, where he is the former World Heavyweight Champion.

Danielson is frequently regarded by wrestling critics as one of the best overall professional wrestlers in the world today, having won the Wrestling Observer's "Best Technical Wrestler" and "Most Outstanding Wrestler" awards several times. He was trained by a who's who of wrestling, including certified legend Shawn Michaels; former WWE Intercontinental Champion William Regal once said that the greatest accomplishment of his career was having a hand in Danielson's training.

Per usual, That Other Wiki has a rundown on his life and career.


Tropes associated with Bryan Danielson include:

  • Accidentally Accurate: His reason for not calling his finisher the LeBell Lock: "Who did Gene LeBell ever beat anyway?" As a pro wrestler, no one really. While LeBell is one of the toughest men alive and revered as a martial artist and as a trainer, he was a preliminary worker during his pro wrestling career.
  • Acquired Situational Narcissism: Since become World Heavyweight Champion, he's progressively gained more and more of this each week.
    • He did this in ROH as well.
  • Adorkable: His first WWE gimmick was that he's a quirky, awkward, good-natured guy...who just happened to be able to make anyone on the roster tap out, and had the hottest women on the show fawning over him.
  • Arch Nemesis:
  • Arrogant Kung Fu Guy: Whenever's he's a heel anyway
  • Animal Motifs: The Dragon. One of his red barons is "American Dragon".
  • Ascended Meme: His "YES! YES! YES!" chant was adopted by the fans as a reaction (similar to Stone Cold's "WHAT?")
    • Not to mention, WWE has officially released a "YES! YES! YES!" t-shirt.
  • Awesome Yet Practical: Being a vegan is cool enough, but the reason he is one is simple - he's got a poor immune system and cutting out animal products makes it better.
  • Badass: One of the biggest in the industry.
  • Bastard Boyfriend: Of the Unconflicted variety towards AJ ever since turning heel.
  • Beard of Evil: With his heel turn.
  • Beard of Sorrow: During his first ROH feud with Homicide, Danielson grew his Hobo Beard. During this time, he also came to the ring to a remix of The Imperial March.
  • Berserk Button:
    • As a face, Michael Cole really got under Daniel Bryan's skin and vice versa. On at least one occasion, their shouting matches escalated to the point where Daniel Bryan's jumped from the ring to the floor threatening to kick Michael Cole's ass and fully intending to do it.
    • It also pays NOT TO ATTACK Brie… he’ll get you for that. Somebody tried and learned that hard way.
  • Big Damn Heroes: After being fired from the WWE for his actions, Bryan was kayfabe exiled from the Nexus for "showing remorse". Two months later, he's rehired...and made the 7th man for Team WWE against The Nexus. Cue markout.
  • Big YES! YES! YES! YES! YES! YES! YES!: How Bryan celebrated his victories during his run as World Heavyweight Champion, whether he earned it or won by sheer luck.
    • Even after dropping the belt, he still does it anyway.
  • Blatant Lies: His opening promo in the 01/13/2012 edition of Smackdown had him telling the crowd that, despite what it looked like, and no matter what people are saying in the message boards, he absolutely did not intend to win his first championship match against The Big Show via disqualification. That disqualification win was all Mark Henry's fault, not his.
    • I will not cash in my Money in the Bank briefcase until Wrestlemania.
      • He wasn't going to, but certain events, such as being Mark Henry's punching bag for a few weeks, made him realize that he might not be healthy enough for Wrestlemania and took the first opportunity he got to cash it in.
  • Blessed with Suck: After winning The Money in the Bank briefcase, he began to lose more matches than winning them. He got better.
  • Book Ends: WWE Fatal 4-Way on 6/20/10 began and ended with the crowd chanting "DANIEL BRYAN! (clap clap clap-clap-clap)"
    • Topped with WrestleMania starting with Daniel Bryan chants and the next night's RAW ending with them.
  • Borrowed Catchphrase: In an interview for GQ admitted that he got the idea for YES chants from UFC fighter Diego Sanchez.
  • Breakup Breakout: Wade Barrett has done well, but his push has been derailed due to injury. As of now, Bryan is the only member of the original Nexus lineup (Bryan, Barrett, Slater, Gabriel, Otunga, Sheffield, Young) to win a world title. Most of the others have been shipped back to FCW or are floundering around in the midcard.
  • Bullying a Dragon: Spent a week or two leading up to the Rumble antagonizing The Big Show, who was already somewhat irritated with Bryan in the first place. Then he bitch-slaps him on live (sorta) television. Not the best course of action when the guy you're slapping around is well north of 400 pounds and gets to fight you in a steel cage over the weekend.
  • But Not Too White: He is very pale, which other wrestlers have taken time to mock. He himself (in character) insists that his pale skin is a testament to his lack of vanity, therefore making him more manly.
  • Butt Monkey: While he will manage to crush anyone at a PPV, he's not as successful on Raw. He lost to Michael Tarver immediately after his return to the WWE (mostly due to The Miz's interference), and was absolutely destroyed by Sheamus which many claimed destroyed his credibility (Sheamus jumped him before the match and was eventually disqualified for repeatedly kneeing DBD's head at the ropes), then lost again to Sheamus (although he did scare the hell out of Sheamus this time around). He's been getting better about it recently, though, ever since his feud with Dolph Ziggler, and most recently he had a great match with former World Heavyweight Champion Jack Swagger and won.
    • Also, he lost to Alberto Del Rio in the first round of the 2010 King of the Ring.
      • He did manage to qualify for the first round after destroying Ted Di Biase once again though, and did also get consoled by the Bella Twins.
    • Even as World Champ, he was not immune to this, as WrestleMania 28 proved.
  • Catch Phrase:
    • "I have until five, ref!"
    • "Best in the world!"
    • And his signature chant: "You're gonna get your fucking head kicked in!"
    • During NXT, he (and people talking about him) were throwing around "You tap, or you snap!", a holdover from his time in the independent leagues.
      • However, since Michael Cole (repeatedly) got it wrong, it was dropped in short order.
    • "YES! YES! YES!"
  • Celibate Hero: The Bella Twins have taken a fancy to him, and he turned them down.

 Daniel: Didn't you guys get enough of that last week? (referring to their now-famous triple kiss)

Brie & Nikki: Uh, nooo.

  • Cheap Heat: He is so over right now that he is using this in his promos to get crowds to boo him.
  • Cosmic Retcon: Hey, remember when Danielson was part of The Nexus, helped them Trash the Set, and kicked John Cena's fucking head in? Neither does the WWE!
    • WWE remembers, Heath Slater mentioned Bryan's brief stint in Nexus on the July 22, 2011 episode of Smackdown. Wade Barrett also repeatedly brings it up whenever Bryan is mentioned around him.
    • Though the WWE does remember him winning titles all over the world, dominating the indies, and being the best wrestler in the world awesomely enough.
    • Hilariously enough, this applies even when he returned in season 4 of NXT. The commentators were talking about how much he's earned his spot as a Pro, about coming full circle, etc etc etc and otherwise talking as if he'd been in WWE for a very long time. Though it neglects his stint in Nexus and such, it's more hilarious that - due to the way NXT tapes - he returned to NXT within months of him leaving it!
    • On a darker side, his finishing move (the LeBell/YES! Lock) is very similar to the Crippler Crossface. And as the WWE has struck Benoit from the history books, some of the commentary can be very much full of retcons in regards to the move.
  • Couch Gag: As ROH World Champion, Danielson would constantly force ring announcer Bobby Cruise to introduce him with a different outrageous superlative, such as "the best wrestler in the entire world, with an emphasis on entire world," "the best champion in ROH history," "the best wrestler to ever step foot in the ECW Arena," "really too good to wrestle in front of all these pricks," and "even better than The Beatles."
  • Cool Versus Awesome: Many of his feuds, but his feud with The Miz is a great example, yes really, despite how good you think The Miz may or may not be, this feud is basically the two extremes of wrestling battling it out. You have the charismatic, cocky, flashy and larger than life though unspectacular in the ring Miz versus the more boring, humble, simple and subdued super talented worker - it's Technician Versus Performer on a grand scale that's been set up ever since NXT. The feud has allowed both to expand as wrestlers as well; Bryan gets the pizazz he's been lacking and The Miz gets some in-ring respectability.
    • Inverted by his mentorship of NXT rookie Derrick Bateman in that while Bryan is the humble technician, Bateman is a Large Ham Cloudcuckoolander performer who can't even be taught a simple heel hook without slipping off into his own little world about how he's doing "SUBMISSION WREST-LING!" while Bryan plays the frustrated straight man. Surely, many a Crowning Moment of Funny will come from this.
  • Crowning Music of Awesome: He went from Europe's "The Final Countdown" to a really generic hard rock riff...to Richard Wagner's "Ride of the Valkyries"!
    • And shortly after winning Money in the Bank, he's switched to Freefall by Two Steps From Hell.
    • As to "The Final Countdown", here's how awesome it was. At ROH's "The Chicago Spectacular" in 2006, a heel Danielson was scheduled to defend his world title against Homicide later that month. Homicide had a match against Brent Albright on that particular night, which ended when Albright locked a crowbar submission hold onto Homicide and would not release it even after Homicide grabbed the ropes. Albright was obviously not interested in winning the match so much as he was in injuring Homicide, but why? The reason was revealed very quickly: as Albright was walking to the back, Danielson walked out to meet him and, with a smug grin on his face, gave Albright a big handful of cash. This garnered Danielson tremendous heat from an crowd that was already hostile to him, starting up a loud "FUCK YOU DRAGON!" chant. With that match over, the show moved on, until it was time for the main event: a steel cage match in which Danielson would defend his title against Homicide's friend Samoa Joe. As much as this crowd wanted to see Joe destroy Danielson, as firmly against him as they were, they still sang along with "The Final Countdown" during Dragon's entrance.
    • He's using "Ride of The Valkyries" again...but now it's FUCKING METAL.
  • Demoted to Extra: The second half of his US Title reign was kinda lackluster, although admittedly that's mainly because most of the mid-carders on RAW, such as The Miz and John Morrison, got elevated into the main event scene at the same time, and Daniel Bryan could only kill Ted Dibiase so many times before it got boring. A much more straight example, however, is his and Sheamus's match for the US Championship getting knocked off the card for Wrestlemania 27.
  • Determinator: Both in and out of character. He defended the ROH World Championship for three months with a separated shoulder just so that he could finish the build to Homicide's championship win.
    • Wrestling with a broken eye socket. Enough said.
    • Not just a broken eye socket, a detached retina.
    • Gave up meat-eating so he could continue wrestling with his weak immune system shortly before even arriving in WWE.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: Daniel Bryan spitting in John Cena's face and kicking his fucking head in. John Cena's aura of invincibility was put to the test by Bryan's indy cred.
  • Distaff Counterpart: Sara Del Rey. They trained together, use some of the same moves (Le Bell Lock, Royal Butterfly), and have used the same entrance music ("The Final Countdown", "Ride of the Valkyries")
    • He and his current on-screen girlfriend AJ Lee. Both considered very much members of geek culture, both fairly easily among the smaller yet more talented of their peers, both with at least a decent amount of indy success in their time pre-WWE.
  • Dirty Coward: Is somehow this and a Manipulative Bastard (see below). If he can't win the matches he's in, he does everything he can to get out of them.
  • Distracted by the Sexy: The reason for his loss at Wrestlemania 28.
    • Never My Fault: Blamed said loss on her, claiming it was her that wanted to kiss him before the match.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: Bryan wins the title at Wrestlemania 30 after Triple H keeps screwing him. Randy Orton and Batista were also screwed by this.
  • Evil Costume Switch: Since his recent heel turn, his wrestling attire prominently features a touch of black along with the regular reds.
  • Evil Mentor: To A.J, as he has started coaching her for her matches. She's too in love to notice.
  • Executive Meddling: His firing following The Nexus invasion. Daniel had at one point choked ring announcer Justin Roberts with his tie. WWE felt it was to violent for their PG programming. He was let go, but with a 90 days no compete clause he couldn't go to any other big promotion, other than work on the independence scene. The WWE kept an eye on him and rehired him in time for Summer Slam and became the final member of Cena's team.
  • Extreme Melee Revenge: What he did to Kane, interrupting his entrance and whacking him with a steel chair about twenty-five times uninterrupted.
  • Everyone Has Standards: Someone trying to take their own life in front of him… that’s where he DRAWS THE LINE… just ask AJ.
  • Face: Bryan Danielson started off as a heel during his ROH championship run, but he was so awesome the crowd never stopped cheering for him. In the WWE, he spat in John Cena's face and declared war on the WWE as a member of the Nexus, but unfortunately was released around that time. The WWE brought him back the moment they could, and they of course brought him back as a face because they figured crowd would probably never boo the guy after that.
  • Fan Nickname: Because of his new name in the WWE, (it's easier to market people when their names have fewer syllables) many people have started calling him Daniel Bryan Danielson, or "DBD," to avoid confusion.
    • When Danielson was first signed in WWE, speculaion on what his WWE ring name would be led to to the creation of "Dirk Dickbutt".
    • D Bryan Danielson
  • Fashionable Asymmetry: In WWE he changed his ring gear from straight red to a red and white hybrid pattern. It still looks pretty good.
  • Finishing Move: He primarily uses a submission hold called the Cattle Mutilation, but he's also known as "Mr. Small Package" for his tendency to use small package pins to win matches.
    • Since returning to WWE, he seems to have settled on an omoplata crossface (named the Lebell Lock, a reference to Judo legend Gene Lebell[1]) as his new finisher. Recently, he's moved to a guillotine choke. Occasionally, for a knockout finisher, he'll settle for just kicking the other guy's fucking head in.
    • He also had multiple finishing moves that involved holding the opponent down and elbowing or stomping their face in.
    • Five Moves of Doom: Although he has a nearly unlimited moveset, many of his later ROH matches had a final stretch in which Danielson would use several of his potential finishers in sequence - the Cattle Mutilation, the Crossface Chickenwing, the MMA elbows, "You're gonna get your fucking head kicked in," and the triangle choke in some order or another.
  • Follow the Leader: Averted; Michael Cole called him out into believing he'd cash in Money in the Bank just like almost[2] every winner before him. Danielson replies that he's going to be cashing it at Wrestlemania 28. Cole was right.
  • Geeky Turn On: He gets quite excited after watching Gail Kim do some submission holds.
  • Granola Guy: He's a vegan and a socialist, and at least his character has always had an anti-corporate slant. He even retained the anti-establishment characterization in WWE, using it to launch a feud with company man Michael Cole.
  • Heel: Began to turn after deciding to cash in Money in the Bank at TLC on a prone Big Show moments after he won it, after having put down others for doing such a thing in the past. Afterwards, he began antagonizing Show just a little by continuing to interfere in his matches despite him asking him not to. After implying that Show DOES need his help, he was accused of having his title go to his head. Then, on the 1/6/12 Smack Down!, when finding himself struggling in a title defense against Big Show, he resorted to taunting Mark Henry into attacking him, causing the DQ, so he could retain his title, after which, he celebrated like he had won the Super Bowl. Definitely taking a level in jerkass here...
    • Then on the 1/13/12 show, he manipulated his new girlfriend AJ (who confessed her love for him that VERY night) into taking a nasty looking hit from Big Show, taking advantage of the latter's Heroic BSOD to have the match called off, while likely getting Show off of his back for good. Dick move Daniel... dick move.
  • Heel Face Revolving Door: As ROH World Champion, whether Danielson was a face or heel depended entirely on who he was wrestling and where. He always wrestled heel in Chicago, notably against Roderick Strong and Colt Cabana; he wrestled Nigel McGuinness twice as a face, and then as a heel when they wrestled in Britain; he wrestled face against Chris Hero and Sonjay Dutt; and he was always unquestionably a heel when wrestling Homicide. After that, he remained a face - and like Ric Flair, his heel mannerisms became face mannerisms due to how integral they had become to his character.
  • Hollywood Dateless: Michael Cole says he's never had a date. However, since he's Michael Cole and Bryan is WWE's current Chick Magnet, it's pretty much a given that he was just being obnoxious.
    • Though now the Bellas have gotten into it, they've even made a contest out of being his "first".
    • Now, he's apparently been dating Gail Kim for months; he just hung with the Bellas because he felt sorry for them.
    • Now we can add AJ Lee to the list as well.
      • Does anyone else get that vibe that he and AJ Lee are channeling Macho Man Randy Savage and Miss Elizabeth?
  • Humiliation Conga: The beginning of his WWE run really looked like this, forced to be a rookie, with the rather average worker of The Miz as his mentor, forced to job to a pack of left-footed actual rookies, then unceremoniously fired after being attached to the hot new angle. Of course it was subverted as he got hired again cause he's so over, and got the US Title and revenge against his Smug Snake former mentor.
  • Hypocrite: Cole calls out Bryan on the 11/28/2011 Raw for cashing in his MITB briefcase against a KO'd Mark Henry far before his promised match at WM 28. Bryan admits that, yes, he's a hypocrite for doing it, but considering that Henry had been pretty much been trying to end Bryan's career on a weekly basis, plans change...
    • But now that he has cashed it in successfully and won the World Heavyweight Championship, is Cole right?
    • What, because he succeeded? It's the same exact motivation. Let's also remember that Big Show has actually pushed Bryan toward cashing in that briefcase, which actually put Bryan further into Henry's line of fire in the first place. This is simply Show being Hoist by His Own Petard, and any hypocrisy on Bryan's part has already been admitted and explained.
  • I Can't Dance: After taking care of business with Ziggler one week on Raw, the WWE Divas convince a reluctant DBD to dance with them. And it turns out he can cut a decent rug for a white guy. He won't be doing the splits again for a while though.
  • Ignore the Fanservice: His storyline with the Bellas largely consists of Bryan ignoring the Twin Threesome Fantasy unfolding around him... only because he's already seeing Gail Kim.
  • Incoming Ham: With an entrance set to Wagner's Ride of the Valkyries, punctuated with loud chants of "YES!" while pointing into the air, could you really expect anything else?
  • In-Series Nickname: Booker T calls him "D Bryan".
  • Irony: Bryan is five credits away from an associates degree, those five credits? In PE.
    • Also, Bryan had a storyline in 2011 where the Bella Twins were fawning over him. That storyline ended with Bryan essentially kicking the Bellas to the curb in favor of Gail Kim. Fast forward to 2012, where he's with AJ in storyline but, in Real Life, he's dating Brie Bella. One can imagine that they've shared a couple of jokes about the previous year's angle.
  • I Thought It Meant: Somehow the Bella Twins confused "virgin" with "vegan." Cue the IWC declaring "I Knew It!!" when that's how the angle played out (see also: RAW 1/24/11).
  • Jerkass: Most Heels are, but after spending most of the first part of his WWE tenure as a Nice Guy face, the level of dickishness that came with his heel turn was especially jarring.
  • Large Ham: He once engaged in Ham-to-Ham Combat with Larry Sweeney over a single cent.
    • YES! YES! YES! YES! YES! YES! YES! YES! YES! YES! YES! YES! YES! YES! YES!
    • WORLD! HEAVYWEIGHT! CHAMPION!
  • Law of Chromatic Superiority: Red is more than a Shout-Out to William Regal, it's awesome the best in the world.
  • Legacy Character: In a subtle way, his red trunks and one of his moves he uses, the Regal-Plex (bridging leg-hook belly to back suplex), were used/invented by his trainer William Regal.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Daniel Bryan Danielson is a Lightning Bruiser of the deceptively strong variety. Sure he doesn't have a Charles Atlas Superpower, but he is strong enough to throw out a bevy of suplexes against good sized opponents.
  • Manipulative Bastard: His latest Heel turn has made him into one. He has managed to hold on to the World Heavyweight Championship against both Mark Henry and The Big Show, by getting the victories by countout, interference or otherwise.
    • Everything about his on-air relationship with AJ Lee.
  • Manly Tears: When he won the Smackdown Money in the Bank.
  • The Mentor: He was trained by William Regal and Shawn Michaels. When The Miz was made his "pro" on NXT, he did nothing to help his rookie.
    • Bryan himself trained SHIMMER's first champion, Sara Del Rey - her Royal Butterfly finisher is a move that Bryan had used earlier in his career. According to rumor, he also advised her to use "Ride of the Valkyries" as entrance music before he himself used the song in WWE.
    • Older and Wiser: Bryan is Derrick Bateman's pro in NXT season 4
  • One-Scene Wonder: Danielson's WWE Pay Per View experiences have been like this; he wrestles in the first or second match on the card, but those matches usually wind up match of the night. Examples include Miz/Morrison/DBD at Hell in a Cell, Di Biase at Survivor Series, or DBD/Ziggler at Bragging Rights.
    • Given his status in the mid-card currently, pretty much every wrestler he's fought since Night of Champions (Miz, Ziggler, etc) has had their "best match ever" in many people's eyes with Danielson.
  • Overly Long Gag: The YES! chant usually is this to begin with, but when Bryan re-named his finisher as The Yes Lock, he punctuated it by yelling YES! in Kofi Kingston's face for a good thirty seconds, prompting Kofi to corpse from the sheer ridiculousness.
  • Perma Stubble: In his current run.
  • Pint-Sized Powerhouse: Five ten and one hundred ninety pounds puts him firmly in the small category, especially when giants are so common in wrestling. However, he isn't a Fragile Speedster like similarly sized wrestlers - he goes toe to toe with wrestlers twice his weight and wins.
  • Precision F-Strike: The ending of the 01/13/2012 edition of WWE Smackdown had Bryan telling Big Show that "You... are a bastard" for accidentally tackling his girlfriend, AJ.
  • Punctuated for Emphasis: How he usually declared himself "BEST! WRESTLER! IN THE WORLD!"
    • And then, when the NXT rookies invaded a Raw main event to tear apart the set and brutalize John Cena, Bryan looked John Cena in the face while screaming "YOU! ARE NOT! BETTER THAN ME!"
    • His current heel run has Bryan declaring himself as the "WORLD! HEAVYWEIGHT! CHAMPION!", combining it with "YES! YES! YES! YES!" for added ham.
  • Put on a Bus: RAW NXT leader Wade Barrett claiming that Bryan had been removed from the group for showing remorse (accentuating the others' refusal to apologize). Then he comes back to join Cena's team against his old stablemates in TheNexus at Summerslam a few months later.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: Vegan socialists from Nirvana's hometown don't exactly sound badass - Michael Cole even called him a wuss for not eating meat. But none of that stops Bryan from kicking a metric ton of ass regardless.
  • Recognition Failure: Apparently, Bryan was often not recognized by security guards when he showed up at the arena for his wrestling matches.
  • Red Baron: "The American Dragon", or "AmDrag."
  • Romance on the Set: Several months after he dumped her (and her sister) in storyline, Bryan and Brie Bella started dating In Real Life (while, in storyline, he's with AJ.)
  • Schedule Slip: Justified. His Youtube channel and website have not been updated very much, but Bryan is too busy being in the main event on Smackdown.
  • Self-Deprecation: In WWE, he has referred to himself as the "anti-superstar," saying that his music is so generic and forgettable that even he can't recognize it, and that he looks so shabby and is so un-stylish that he has to show his ID to WWE security to stop them from throwing him out of the building. This is also a bit of a knock at WWE management, for giving him a generic song and being so disorganized their employees don't know who he is.
    • Subverted by his current entrance music, the very identifiable "Ride of the Valkyries".
  • Shocking Elimination: On NXT, especially after ending up in 1st place in the previous poll.
  • Shout-Out: His signature dark-red trunks are a tribute to his real-life mentor William Regal.
    • The "YES!" chants were inspired by Diego Sanchez' "Yes cartwheel"
  • Smug Snake: As a WWE heel. He is quite the weasel.
  • Smug Vegan: His current heel run in WWE, where he'll definitely flaunt his vegan tendencies and rub it in everyone's faces.
  • Squash Match: Danielson was on the losing end of several of these in his run on NXT.
    • And has had some seriously epic Ham and Cheese squashes of his own in ROH. Most famously, any time he got the chance to tie the flexible Jack Evans in knots.
    • Then he got squashed on the grandest stage of them all, WrestleMania 28.
  • Straight Man: WWE got around Bryan's relatively plain look by simply portraying him as an all around normal guy in a company full of people who are balls to the wall insane, most of all his own rookie Derrick Bateman. It works really, really well, resulting in some truly funny moments, including the infamous "SUBMISSION WRESTL-ING!" incident.
  • Testosterone Poisoning: The Daniel Bryan Manliness Meter.
    • This aspect of Bryan's character re-emerged in NXT season 4, when he introduced his rookie, Derek Bateman, as "manly... so manly... oh, so manly." For his own part, Bateman refers to himself as "mantastic".
  • That Man Is Dead: The "Who is Daniel Bryan?" promo plays with the idea, with Danielson stating that Daniel Bryan is clearly a loser, and Bryan Danielson is the one who wrestled all over the world and kicked people's heads in. After the NXT invasion of Raw, he suddenly changed the name on his Twitter account to Bryan Danielson, declaring that it was indicative of the winds of change. Averted upon his WWE return at Summerslam 2010, probably since the fans had gone right on chanting "Daniel Bryan" anyway. It seems that the WWE will be conveniently ignoring the promo.
  • Theatrics of Pain: Daniel Bryan manages to make getting hit with a clothesline look like the most painful thing ever, since he somehow manages to get a full 360 degree rotation in the air when hit by one no matter who does it or when.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Gives one to Alberto Del Rio on the August 19, 2011 episode of Smackdown, pointing out how Del Rio's "prophesized" WWE Title victory was nothing special and all he'd done is the same old thing every other Money In The Bank winner had ever done.
  • Unsportsmanlike Gloating: Part of his gimmick as the WHC celebrating over any victory whether they be by dq or even default.
    • He even celebrated his girlfriend's victory like he won the match himself on a recent episode of Smack Down.
  • Vegan Evil: His current role model gimmick could be basically summed up as CM Punk as a vegan instead of Straight Edge. Even CM Punk himself lampshaded it on an episode of Smackdown, stating that if Daniel Bryan shaved AJ's head, he'd sue for gimmick infringement.
  • Villainous BSOD: In contrast to his normal heel persona, where it's hard to get him to shut up, when Josh Mathews asked him about his Squash Match loss the RAW after Wrestlemania, he didn't respond. At all.
  • Weak but Skilled: A relatively small wrestler who stays away from big power moves, but he has a nearly endless array of holds, submissions, and suplexes.
  • What Could Have Been:
    • Both Danielson and longtime ROH nemesis Nigel McGuinness were believed to have both signed with WWE, leaving many to wonder how well the two would do in the company. Then it was discovered that Nigel, in fact, hadn't signed with WWE, but instead had signed with TNA (eventually debuting there as Desmond Wolfe).
      • Nigel/Desmond has disappeared from TNA television entire due to health issues, the same health issues that cause WWE management to pass on him in the first place. Now imagine Nigel on the WWE road schedule and it does not take a rocket scientist to figure out what would have been.
      • And now we'll never see Desmond Wolfe vs. Lloyd Boner.
    • How the Nexus angle would have been handled if Danielson had been able to stay around. Out of all of the rookies, he had the biggest issues with WWE management. Combine this with the fact that can cut some pretty good heel promos, and the fact that he's one of the best pure wrestlers in the world today, and the entire angle could have gone very, very differently.
  • What Do You Mean It's Not Awesome?: At the end of a long, bloody, hate-filled feud, Danielson finished off Homicide with the longest Airplane Spin (over 100 rotations!) in wrestling history.
    • Using "Ride of the Valkyries" as his entrance music after becoming WWE United States Champion.
      • What, using The Final Countdown doesn't qualify? It's one of the cheesiest songs ever!
      • His newest theme, Freefall, is this trope incarnate. It sounds like it should be the backround music to a epic fantasy war sequence, and instead it's a Professional Wrestling theme.
      • He's returned to "Ride of the Valkyries", but it's a friggin' metal rendition of it.
      • Screaming out "YES! YES! YES" at the top of his lungs (complete with jubilant finger points) whenever he wins a match (sheer luck or otherwise) likely counts.
  • Worked Shoot: His promos on NXT after his elimination have elements of this. Some fans thought this was true of his firing and eventual, perhaps inevitable rehiring, but it seems unlikely.
  • Would Hit a Girl: While he was in Ring of Honor he cut a promo in which he threatened to backhand a little girl who gave him the double bird.
  • Yank the Dog's Chain: Cashed in his MITB briefcase against a prone Mark Henry to win the World Title on the 11/25/2011 Smackdown, only to have the victory and the match overruled by Teddy Long due to Henry not being medically cleared. The disappointment and reluctance on Bryan's face was palpable.
  • Your Princess Is in Another Castle: At ROH: Final Battle 2006, Homicide was wrestling Danielson in his last shot at the ROH World Championship. During the match, Homicide was attacked by other wrestlers, and it appeared that Danielson would once again walk away with the title - but then referee Todd Sinclair declared that the match was "too important" to end on a disqualification, and he ordered that the match be restarted (much to the delight of the fans...and the disbelief of Danielson).
    • Averted Trope: After Winning Smackdown's Money in the Bank contract, rather than go with the usual Your Princess Is in Another Castle cash in, he promises to cash in his title opportunity at Wrestlemania 28
      • He cashes it in and was victorious at 11/25/2011 but Mark Henry wasn't cleared and thus it doesn't count.
  • You Wouldn't Hit a Guy with Glasses: Invoked by his rookie, Derrick Bateman. It doesn't work. Though, Danielson's actions led to Bateman winning the match he had for that night.

 Daniel Bryan(To Bateman): Now get up. Because you've got a NXT Rookie Reunion Tag Team Match tonight, an I want you to win! And I don't want you to win for me, I want you to win for you! I want you to win for chicks! I want you to win for America! AND I WANT YOU TO WIN FOR CLEVELAND!

Bateman: YAAAAARRRRGHHH!


YES! YES! YES!!.....

Notes

  1. Though he's recently renamed it to the "YES!" Lock, referencing his current catchphrase of sorts.
  2. except Kennedy and Rob Van Dam
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