Ranking the Top Bryan Danielson Feuds We Want to See After AEW Debut
AEW All Out was a slam dunk for Tony Khan and The Elite. The company’s return to its birthplace, the Now Arena, will go down as one of the most historic nights in the professional wrestling industry. The stacked pay-per-view delivered CM Punk’s return to in-ring competition and a few colossal surprises including the debut of Brian Danielson.
Landing the Second City Saint and providing a home for him after a seven-year hiatus is a monumental acquisition. However, adding someone who is renowned for his technical prowess like Danielson is an impressive feat for several different reasons.
The American Dragon’s reputation speaks for itself. After all, he just headlined WrestleMania for the second time earlier this year. In addition, many fans consider him one of the illustrious indie wrestlers of his generation thanks to his run with Ring of Honor.
As a matter of fact, it wouldn’t be hard to make an argument that he is one of the greatest of all time. The former WWE champion will no doubt add to AEW’s growing standard for high-quality matches.
So, let's just cut to chase and rank the top feuds we would like to see him participate in with All Elite Wrestling.
5. Daniel Garcia
During the media scrum following All Out, Danielson mentioned that he texted Tony Khan to tell him he “loved” Darby Allin and Daniel Garcia’s match from last week’s episode of Rampage. It certainly will not be the last time the newcomer is mentioned in relation to one of AEW’s new signees.
The Buffalo native’s growing presence in the indie scenes over last year and his in-ring style will draw some comparisons to Danielson. As such, many fans have already earmarked Red Death as someone they would like to see face The Planet’s Champion straight away.
Garcia even hinted at this on Twitter on Sunday night. Honestly, it just makes too much sense at this point. Although he isn’t the most high profile name on this list, the 22-year-old could absolutely produce some memorable matches with the man who is ready to test himself against the best.
We could have a real technical masterclass on our hands with this feud that will help to put the young phenom on the map.
4. Malakai Black
Considering some of the wrestlers who Danielson crossed paths with but never met in the ring, Malakai Black immediately jumps out. The two shared the stage in the 2020 men’s Money in the Bank ladder match but they haven’t competed in a one-on-one bout yet.
AEW would be the perfect place for The Ominous Man from Amsterdam to test his educated feet against another well-known striker. The idea of these two standouts trading kicks in the middle of the ring is already giving us goosebumps.
Even more, Black gives Danielson someone he could showcase some great character and promo work against. The juxtaposition between a wrestler who appears to be so straight-laced and an enigmatic figure will make for the type of matchup that wrestling fans live for.
They couldn’t look any different and their philosophies are seemingly polar opposites. However, their physicality together could make for some unforgettable matches.
3. CM Punk
This seems like a no brainer, doesn’t it? Now that CM Punk and Bryan Danielson are on the same roster again for the first time in seven-year, they have to revisit their storied rivalry again with AEW.
There have been many comparisons between the two longtime friends and Shawn Michaels and Bret Hart. In fact, Punk famously made the correlation on Colt Cabana’s Art of Wrestling podcast.
When you add in their respective runs with ROH and their vastly separate paths with WWE, there is just too much material to mine for a new showdown. Their exits from the biggest wrestling company in the world are so drastically different that there must be a story to tell after their emergence as a part of AEW in the same year.
This also creates a non-title feud for both of them that is big enough to land on pay-per-view sooner than most viewers might think. That will be important because there shouldn’t be a rush to make either of them a world champion with more established contenders on the roster.
Danielson is a versatile performer but at his core he is a consummate underdog character. As such, he is truly at his best when he has a detestable foil to play off of.
If anyone fits the bill in that category, it’s AEW’s standout heel and indelible agitator, MJF. It’s easy to see some similarities to The Miz in the two-time Dynamite Diamond Ring winner. That makes this an easy feud to build based on the former Leader of the Yes! Movement’s time on SmackDown.
MJF and WWE’s resident A-Lister world apart in some ways but they’re both incredible talkers. The promos between him and Danielson would be must-see television. That’s where this potential rivalry could shine the most.
The Seattle native’s mic skills have improved leaps and bounds over the last few years. Seeing him cut a passionate promo against someone so good at pushing anyone’s buttons would be well worth the price of admission.
1. Kenny Omega
It’s no coincidence that Kenny Omega was the catalyst for both Adam Cole and Bryan Danielson’s arrival at All Out. The Best Bout Machine is the figurative final boss that every new acquisition has to go through eventually.
The American Dragon is no different because the AEW world champion represents a new challenge for him. The two haven’t faced each other since their match with PWG in 2009 and they’ve both grown so much, especially Omega.
The Cleaner isn’t merely a Canadian wrestler with a bright future anymore; he’s the top guy. He’s a fully realized superstar with a resume of excellent matches to back up his namesake. That’s what makes this the matchup that everyone wants to see.
Unlike Punk, there are no questions about whether Danielson is still one of the best in the world. The technical savant was just at the top of the card on the biggest stage in the industry. So, it’s not a matter of if he will take on Omega; it’s a matter of when.
This is one of the most highly anticipated matches following a spectacular pay-per-view. One has to imagine that it won’t disappoint given their respective track records.