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Daniel Bryan hasn’t given up his dream of returning to wrestling, but he’s getting closer to accepting he might not

Though we always knew it, the WWE brand split has certainly confirmed that Daniel Bryan can entertain wrestling fans without actually wrestling.

While we’ve enjoyed his work as Cruiserweight Classic commentator, SmackDown General Manager and Talking Smack co-host, one of the more difficult things for fans of the man behind those performances has been watching him struggle with the notion he might never again get to do one of the things he loves most in the world - take part in a pro wrestling match.

A recent interview which came out today, Feb. 8, 2017, the one year anniversary of his WWE retirement speech, shows Bryan still hoping he’ll get a medical opinion that gives him the go-ahead to wrestle... but also looking back gratefully on the run he did have.

“NEVER SAY NEVER!” Daniel Bryan on possible match with The Miz

Watch this exclusive interview clip with former #WWE champion and current #SmackDown Live General Manager #DanielBryan! Daniel talks about his in-ring future with @WWE and a possible physical pay-off with long-term on-screen rival #TheMiz!

Posted by WWEGP on Wednesday, February 8, 2017

When asked about if his frequent verbal battles with The Miz could lead to the two getting physical, Bryan tells Gorilla Position host James Delow:

So, if you were to ask the WWE, the answer would be 'no’.

As far as I know, no. You know the one thing about this, in any form of entertainment or fighting, or sport, is 'never say, never,' right? I keep going to different things and I keep working on the doctor standpoint of it, 'Okay, is there anything that I can do more to get cleared?' and right now I've done everything I can possibly do, and so, but I still look at different things and still look at this and that.

You know, It's- I dunno, it's an unfortunate scenario to me, but at the same time, I'm very grateful for the amount of time I that had being able to do this. WWE gave me this amazing platform to be able to go out like - the most people, I wrestling in front of like 30,000 people for New Japan, but I was like on the undercard. But most of the times in the United States I’d wrestle in front of a couple hundred people. Like, this was an opportunity to wrestle in front of thousands.

In 2013, I did 227 matches, which is probably why I had neck surgery in 2014 [Laughs]. I did 227 matches in 2013 Almost all of them were in front of three or four thousand people, you know, and then in front of the - as high as 70-plus thousand people. So it’s just been an incredible experience just being able to be a part of this.

While that “never say never” line will make headlines, it’s the return to talking about gratitude - as he did on Raw last year when he told us he had to retire - that’s probably the key takeaway.

Almost all wrestling fans miss seeing him do his thing, and the post-WrestleMania 30 “what if?” game will never not be fascinating and heartbreaking. But a happy, healthy Bryan is a good consolation prize.

And once he’s a proud papa here in a few weeks, he probably won’t even have time for as many doctor’s visits. Plus, he’ll have new motivation to not risk his future!

One year later, things seem to have worked out pretty well for our boi, D-Bry.

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