Last month just weeks after making his AEW debut at the All Out pay-per-view event, Bryan Danielson penned a letter for The Player’s Tribune to talk about his match with Kenny Omega and his departure from WWE. In the letter, he thanked the wrestlers, the people behind the scenes, Vince McMahon, and WWE.
While promoting tonight’s episode of AEW Dynamite in Philadelphia in an interview with ABC 6 Action News, Danielson explained why he wrote the letter.
Danielson started out by noting that part of the letter was to the fans because he feels there is a decent amount of tribalism in wrestling as some fans feel they can only support AEW or WWE so there is the line in the sand. He compared it to people on the right or left in politics. He thinks those who are calling him names or sending him hateful messages feel like he betrayed them because they’re WWE fans.
“From a personal standpoint, I never got a chance to say goodbye to a lot of people [in WWE]. A lot of people didn’t even know it was my last day. I didn’t know if I was going to go back or not. My contract was up. Most people in the company didn’t know my contract was up that day except for a handful of people. I didn’t know if I was going to come back.
I didn’t know if I was going to go to AEW. I didn’t know if I was going to stop wrestling for a while. So there was never really a chance to say goodbye and I also just kind of wanted to express the gratitude that I have not just for the fans of WWE who pushed me to such a high level, but also for the people in WWE.”
Danielson recalled how when he first started out in WWE, there were no vegans on the roster so the catering staff would make him extra food aside from what they made for everyone else and that meant a lot to him.
The former WWE Champion confirmed he was on the SmackDown creative team and recalled having talks with Ryan Callahan, a creative writer.
Danielson ended by stating, “so it’s so many people that you don’t get a chance to say thank you. These past 11 years were awesome and it’s thanks to a lot of you.”
You can watch the entire interview by clicking on the player below (quotes can be found around the 6:10 mark):