While getting ready for his match with Zack Sabre, Jr. at AEW WrestleDream this Sunday (Oct. 1), Bryan Danielson revealed that he’s fully cleared for the first time since breaking his arm at Forbidden Door.
Since he returned from the injury before All Out (for hardcore matches that allowed him to work around his healing forearm), Danielson’s also been talking about how he plans to stop wrestling full-time when his current AEW deal is up next summer.
It’s a combination of factors that might have some thinking we might see Danielson crossing an item off his bucket list before becoming a part-timer. G1 Climax 34, the 2024 edition of New Japan Pro-Wrestling’s grueling, iconic tournament, should wrap up right around the time Bryan’s told his daughter he’ll start being home more often.
But the American Dragon tells the crew at the Getting Over podcast he thinks working the G1 is more delusion than dream at this point:
“Sometimes I have delusions of doing the G1, but I think that’s what they are, I think they’re delusions. That’s something that I’ve wanted to do forever and ever and ever and have never been able to do it. And so, this year would be the year to do it, except is it? Because by the time the next G1 rolls around, I’ll be 43.
“I love doing this but it’s not worth the expense of my health later on in life and I’ve already had enough injuries as it is. I think now doing a G1 might be a little irresponsible of me in comparison to what my overall long-term goals are, which is being there for my kids and there for my family.
“I’m not even talking for the month that I’d be gone for the G1, I’m talking what that would do to my body. My body has been very forgiving of me and the things that I choose to do. I don’t want to take advantage of it too much. It’s been so good to me and I need to treat it kindly this last year.”
As someone who’s want to see Danielson in the G1 for about as long as I knew he or the tournament existed, that’s a little disappointing — but it’s also a relief. By all accounts, working the weeks-long round robin tourney is brutal even for younger, healthier wrestlers. For Bryan to enjoy his kids, and someday their kids... it’s probably best to set that dream/delusion aside.