Daniel Bryan has not appeared on WWE television since losing a Universal Championship match to Roman Reigns on the April 30 edition of Friday Night SmackDown. It was reported shortly afterwards that Bryan's WWE contract had expired, but it had not been confirmed whether or not the former WWE Champion was actually leaving the company. PWInsider's Mike Johnson then dropped a new report on Tuesday that indicates while Bryan isn't necessarily going anywhere else, he's not with WWE at the moment.
"Internally, there has been no discussion of Bryan returning to WWE and he is not listed on the company's roster," Johnson wrote. "There have been some in the company who have taken that to mean that Bryan is signing or will sign eventually with AEW, but PWInsider.com has no confirmation that is correct."
The report also confirmed Bryan is not in the plans for any licensing or merchandise for 2021-22 and that he will not be included in any upcoming action figure releases from Mattel.
Bryan confirmed during a meet and greet prior to WrestleMania 37 that he was trying to get a deal with WWE that would allow him to also work for other companies. He then confirmed in an interview with Barstool's Robbie Fox that it's the type of deal he wishes other WWE stars had.
"I brought [the idea] up to a lot of people," Bryan said. "I don't think [a hair vs. hair match in Mexico] would happen. I also think that now, more than ever, it a time when people are open to new ideas. I think I have made some headway. Whether any of it actually happens, who knows. I don't think people truly understand how great a lot of WWE Superstars are because we don't necessarily put on a pure wrestling product, we put on a sports entertainment product.
"If all of a sudden you saw Cesaro in New Japan, people would be like, 'This guy is the greatest.' If you put Otis in New Japan, people would be like, 'Holy cow, this guy is amazing.' Like, Vader from the 90s type vibe. It's just a different presentation," he continued. "I think it would be a cool and unique contribution in wrestling, as far as giving back. I also think it'd be good for WWE and wrestling in general for them to go and learn at other places. I wouldn't be the performer that I am today if I hadn't wrestled in Japan or the UK, where it was all comedy. All of those things add to your depth and when it's time to put you in a top position, you can do a number of things."