When Daniel Bryan returned to the ring, there were new challenges that he had to deal with. In his first WWE run, he got to solely focus on his wrestling career. This time around, Bryan has a child to take care of and told Booker T on Heated Conversations that it was difficult to be away from home.
"It was very very difficult," said Bryan. "So one of the things that was shocking to me even, was when I got brought back they just threw me on everything. I honestly thought when I came back it was for a limited schedule. That's what I thought it was. There's WrestleMania and I was like things were going to calm down after that. Then we go to Saudi Arabia, so we're gone for 10 days and I'm home for three days. Then we do an 18-day European tour. So you're looking at a span of a month, 31 days, where I'm only home for three days."
"I went into Mark Corano, the talent relations guy at WWE, and I said 'listen I can't do this'. My body could do it, but I'm mentally unwilling to do this. One of the things that was good about me having to step back was you have different priorities. The great thing about WWE is they really worked with me with that."
Now that he has returned, Bryan got to work with his wife Brie Bella. When asked about the impact of the Bella Twins, Bryan does not think that they get enough respect, citing their ability to expose WWE to a whole new audience.
"I don't think so," Bryan replied, when asked if they get enough respect. "Obviously I'm very close to the situation and I know that a lot of hardcore wrestling fans look at them and their era as a negative on women's wrestling. Brie [Bella] was in the ring when the ring when the hashtag 'give divas a chance' because they were only in like a 30-second match. I think people were frustrated with this idea that the women weren't being given more opportunities. They worked very hard for that kind of thing and there were part of this transition into divas to women's wrestling.
"But I also think that... I get women coming up to me and saying 'oh my god, you're Daniel Bryan, right? From the show'. And that's how I know that they're not necessarily wrestling fans, they're Total Divas or Total Bellas fans. I think exposing our product to a different audience is always good. That's one of things that I think Vince [McMahon] will say, and a lot of people will say, is that one of the great things about things like Total Divas and Total Bellas is it exposes WWE talent to a whole new audience of people."
You can listen to the full interview with Bryan on Booker T's podcast Heated Conversations below. If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Heated Conversations with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.