Jonathan Bachman/AP Images for WWE
Jonathan Bachman/AP Images for WWE
Daniel Bryan is opening about his decision to retire from the WWE.
"Due to medical reasons, effective immediately, I am announcing my retirement. Tonight on Raw, I'll have a chance to elaborate. #gratitude," he tweeted.
Then on Monday night, Daniel appeared on Monday Night Raw where he did have the chance to elaborate.
After receiving a standing ovation from the crowd an emotional (and newly shaven) Daniel spoke to his fans.
"Now it is time for me to address the giant elephant in the room," Daniel began. "I know, I know, I didn't want to shave my beard either."
After breaking his silence with a joke, Daniel went on to say that he actually cut his hair for the Wigs for Kids organization.
Then it was time for Daniel to talk about his retirement.
"Now to some less fun stuff," Daniel said. "Trust me I don't want to be doing this anymore than you guys want me to be doing this. But the truth is I've been wrestling since I was 18 years old and within the first five months of my wrestling career I'd already had three concussions, and for years after that I would get a concussion here and there or here or there. And then it gets to a point when you've been wrestling for 16 years that that adds up to a lot of concussions, and it gets to a point where they tell you that you can't wrestle anymore."
That wasn't something that Daniel was willing to just accept.
He explained, "For a long time I fought that because I'd gotten EEGs and brain MRIs and neuropsychological evaluations and all of them said this, that I was fine and that I could come back and I could wrestle and I trained like I would come back and I would wrestle and I was ready at a moments notice if WWE needed me I wanted to come back and wrestle. Because I have loved this in a way that I have never loved anything else."
Daniel revealed that a week and a half ago he took a test and it said "maybe my brain isn't as OK as I thought it was."
"I have a family to think about," Daniel explained. "My wife and I want to start having kids soon."
Daniel then went on to say, "So it is with a heavy heart and the utmost sadness that I officially announce my retirement."
He then ended his speech by telling the crowd, "I'm grateful."
Daniel then explained everything he's been grateful for over the years, including his fans.
He then got emotional when talking about his late father and how happy he was that his dad was able to see him wrestle.
Daniel also mentioned his wife, Brie.
"I'm grateful because of wrestling I got to meet the most wonderful woman in the world, who's beautiful, she's smart and she completes me in a way that I didn't even think was possible," Daniel said. "And that's because of wrestling."
"Tomorrow morning I start a new life," Daniel said. "A life where I'm no longer a wrestler. But that is tomorrow and that is not tonight and by damn I have one more night to feel this energy and to feel this crowd! So if I could just get one last 'YES!' chant I would really appreciate it!"
Brie then joined her husband in the ring while the crowd cheered.
The question of whether Daniel could return to wrestling has been up in the air for almost a year. Daniel's been on leave from the WWE since April 2015 and has been through a lot of highs and lows since then, as documented on Total Divas.
Through all of the ups and downs, Daniel's wife Brie has been there every step of the way. Brie even posted a sweet message about her husband's retirement on Instagram on Monday.
"A new journey awaits us and for the rest of our lives we'll talk about this one. You have given so much hope and inspiration to people all over. We haven't lost you, just get to see you in a different light. #thankyoudanielbryan #mystrength #mylove," she wrote.
Season 6 of Total Divas premieres this fall.