Daniel Bryan spoke with Graham GSM Matthews of Bleacher Report before his match against WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns at tomorrow’s Fastlane PPV.
With so much talent in wrestling promotions around the world, Bryan revealed some of his dream matches outside of the WWE Universe. With Kazuchika Okada being one of them, Bryan also noted he actually got to face another of NJPW’s top stars, Shingo Takagi, in Ring of Honor.
“Okada, from the time I got to WWE until now, he’s gone from someone you didn’t know much about to one of the best wrestlers in the world,” Bryan said. “I’ve actually wrestled Shingo, and he’s fantastic. I always loved him in Ring of Honor, and I wasn’t even 30 years old yet, but for whatever reason, I wrestled Seth Rollins in one of his first big singles matches in Ring of Honor, and it was really the story of the veteran versus the young up-and-comer. I’ve always loved doing that sort of thing and those kinds of matches.”
Moving to All Elite Wrestling, Bryan picked out Jungle Boy, MJF, and AEW TNT Champion Darby Allin. For NXT, he looked to wrestlers like Kushida, Kyle O’Reilly, and Finn Balor — someone he’s faced on the indies, but not in WWE.
“When you look at the AEWs or whatever it is, somebody like Jungle Boy or MJF or Darby Allin,” Bryan stated. “Those guys are really interesting to me. When you look at NXT, he’s not young, but I’ve always wanted to wrestle Kushida. That guy’s great. Kyle O’Reilly and I, I don’t know if we’ve ever wrestled. I’ve always wanted to do a singles match with him because he’s gotten so, so good. Finn Balor and I have wrestled on the independents once or twice, and I’d love to do a match with him in WWE. There are just so many guys.”
Bryan also picked out ROH Pure Champion Jonathan Gresham, and NXT General Manager William Regal’s son, Bailey Matthews, as others he’d like to face in the ring.
“The problem is, guys are so good now and I like wrestling so much, so when you start naming names, then other names come up,” Bryan said. “In Ring of Honor, there’s a guy named Jonathan Gresham. He’s fantastic. I’d love to wrestle Jonathan Gresham. There are all these great guys. When people say that, one thing I don’t like about that is that sometimes it minimizes how many guys in WWE I’d like to wrestle.
“I’ve never wrestled Matt Riddle one-on-one. I’ve never wrestled Ricochet one-on-one. I’ve wrestled Johnny Gargano one-on-one before I came to WWE, but it was mostly a comedy match where I got my pants pulled down and my butt was probably out for a full five minutes.
“A Kushida match, a Kyle O’Reilly match, there are so many great guys,” Bryan said. “William Regal’s son, Bailey Matthews, just debuted on NXT UK. I’d love to do a match with him. William Regal has helped me so much in my career. I don’t know, when you start talking about guys I want to wrestle, I get really fired up, so it’s hard to limit it to just a few.”
WWE Fastlane streams tomorrow at 7 pm ET on the WWE Network and Peacock.