Bryan Danielson Says He Doesn’t Want To Retire Again, Reveals His Goals In AEW

AEW star “The American Dragon” Bryan Danielson recently appeared on the SXSW panel, where he talked about a number of topics including why he doesn’t want to retire again from pro wrestling and what his goals are in the company.

Danielson said, “I don’t use the r-word [retired], I already had to do that once, and I don’t wanna do it again.” “I wanna leave it open to be able to wrestle when I’m 75 if I so choose. When I came to AEW, CM Punk had just debuted several weeks before, and he had talked about wanting to help the younger talent, all that kind of stuff, and I watched his interview, and I was like, ‘That’s what I was gonna say.’”

“So then, when they asked me about it, ‘What’s your goals here in AEW?’ I was like, ‘Ah, I’m gonna come in here and kick everybody’s heads in. I don’t care about pushing younger guys to the top, all that kind of stuff. I’m just gonna stomp them in the face and show them that I’m the best.’ But that’s actually not the reality as somebody who’s 42 years old and who has two kids.”

“One of the things that I loved about AEW and just the idea of it is just that it made the pro wrestling industry healthier, and so when I look at that, how do I make this industry that I’ve loved since I was a child — how do I make it healthier?”

“And the idea is to pass on the stardom that I’ve been given to try to pass that on to the younger wrestlers… I’ve had some people ask me or say things to me like, ‘Oh Bryan, you should be champion,’ or, ‘You should’ve been champion,’ and the reality is to me, no, the champions that we’ve had have been great.”

“Hangman (Adam Page) was a great champion, MJF was a great champion, and it elevated these younger people to where now these people are stars, and you put Hangman on TV now, and he draws a rating. You put MJF on TV; he draws a rating. It would be easy to just take stars of the past and make them your champion and make them your top guy. That’s the easy way.”

“It’s much harder to take somebody like MJF who hadn’t been on national television and turn him into a star that draws ratings… That was my bigger goal is to transfer stardom from one generation to another.”

(H/T to PostWrestling for transcribing the above quotes)