Legend of The American Dragon: Daniel Bryan's unlikely rise to the WWE Title & beyond (Part Two)

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September 19, 2013

Third time's the charm

As another controversial star once said, the cream rises to the top. So it shouldn’t be a surprise that, for all the good vibes it garnered among his grassroots fan base, Bryan’s stint in WWE exile didn’t last long. Just a few months after his release, “The American Dragon” returned to the promised land once more and found himself – for the third time – under the employ of WWE.

Bryan’s grand return was as part of Team WWE at SummerSlam 2010 in a match against his old cohorts in The Nexus, as John Cena’s handpicked final member of the heroic all-star squadron. He followed that up by submitting his former sensei to win the U.S. Title at Night of Champions 2010 (he even broke out an old indie hold for the title defense), eventually captured a Money in the Bank contract and World Heavyweight Championship (no need to go into how he lost it), anchored a beloved WWE Tag Team Title run with Kane, and inspired one of the greatest chants of all time.

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At SummerSlam 2013, Bryan captured his first WWE Championship by defeating none other than Cena himself, 10 years after their first match on Velocity. To finish Cena off for good, Bryan used another indie move: A running Busaiku Knee to the head, a favorite of his old rival KENTA – the same guy who brought his sister to tears.

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