Before They Were Stars: Daniel Bryan Wrestles in Japan in 1999

It was a huge blow to wrestling fans this week as one of the beloved and popular superstars in World Wrestling Entertainment, Daniel Bryan, was forced to retire at age 34 due to a series of medical issues. Before signing with WWE, he spent the first decade of his career wrestling under his real name, Bryan Danielson, and was originally trained at the Texas Wrestling Academy in 1999 by the legendary Shawn Michaels. This is some of the earliest Bryan Danielson wrestling footage in existence as he traveled to Japan alongside fellow Texas Wrestling Academy graduate Lance Cade (who also competed in WWE before dying of drug-related heart failure at age 30) to wrestle a tag team match for the Frontier Martial-Arts Wrestling promotion. The whole match is in Japanese, but here’s your chance to see Daniel Bryan wrestling underneath a cheap mask as the “American Dragon”.

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