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Why Daniel Bryan Will Never Be the Face of the WWE
His war cry is now famous. It doesn't just echo in wrestling arenas anymore. Daniel Bryan's "yes, yes, yes" chant is heard in stadiums across the nation. In a short couple of years, his catchphrase has become just as popular as the Ric Flair "whooo" and the Steve Austin "what" catch phrases. Even the Super Bowl Champion Seattle Seahawksgot in on the festivities, tweeting out Bryan's catchphrase a day after the big win. So why is it, with all this forward momentum, Daniel Bryan cannot be the face of the WWE?
First, since the conception of the company, those who have been the proverbial face of the WWE have always been larger than life superstars. They were not men of average strength and common looks. They were beasts like Andre the Giant, or in the case of Hulk Hogan, characters ripped straight from the pages of comic books. They were muscular baldheaded men with chips on their shoulders like Stone Cold Steve Austin. Daniel Bryan, who is perhaps the foremost wrestler in the world today, stands under six feet tall. He weighs 250 lbs. at most. His stature, which makes him the forever underdog, is a lofty component of what comprises him.
Another matter that posts in the way of Daniel Bryan's universal acceptance as the face of the WWE is his facial hair. Bryan is well known for his mammoth and untamed beard. A nest of hair that looks like it belongs to a homeless man, rather than a top tier wrestling superstar. Some fans don't like to admit it, but the WWE is sports entertainment. Its television. And beauty matters. And although his beard makes him stand out to wrestling fans, it would not attract the casual consumer. In fact, it would turn off potential consumers, as studies have shown that men with beards are associated with dishonesty and distrust.
Of course, some may argue that Hulk Hogan had a mustache and Steve Austin had a goatee. Both of which are true. However, both men were well groomed. For Hogan, the mustache added to his cartoon like character. And for Austin, his well groomed goatee made him look brawny, which is what his whole gimmick was based on.
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Should Daniel Bryan be given the chance to be the face of the WWE?
This does not mean Daniel Bryan cannot continue to be a top star for the WWE. In fact, the opposite is true. There are many Hall of Fame wrestlers who had great careers, and were never the leader of the WWE. This includes men like Bret "Hitman" Hart and Shawn Michaels. Daniel Bryan is very similar to both of these men. Both in stature and in wrestling skill. And those two, just like Bryan, were main event caliber wrestlers and featured prominently on television. However, they were never the sole face of the WWE like Austin, Undertaker or Cena. Bryan is a modern day Bret Hart or Shawn Michaels. Not always in the forefront, but a man who is so talented and accepted, that he will always be a reliable main event superstar. But in the end, there is always a first time for everything.
Maybe Daniel Bryan could be the first of his kind to be the face of the WWE. But if history tells us anything, it's that the WWE will always rely on larger than life superstars to wear their brass ring. Everybody else will play second fiddle. But in truth, that's not always a bad instrument to play.