WWE fans were shocked to learn that Daniel Bryan needs neck surgery. The reigning champion broke the news on Monday Night Raw, and in this case — it’s real news. This is not an angle or part of a storyline. All indications are that Bryan needs minor neck surgery. As for how long he’ll be out, nobody really seems to know for sure.
The early speculation is that he’ll miss a couple of months and perhaps be ready to return at SummerSlam. There’s also the other side of the coin, where he could be on the the shelf for several months. With neck surgery, anything is certainly possible.
According to a report on Wrestlezone, it seems that WWE has yet to make a decision on stripping Bryan of the title. Everything is on hold until his surgery is over. But it also seems possible that if he’s only out a short time, that he’ll be allowed to keep the title.
Is that the right call? Does that makes the most sense from a booking POV?
It would make more sense to strip Bryan of the title if he’s going to be out for more than a month. That should be the cutoff point. Missing one PPV is no big deal. Many champions in the past have kept the strap while recovering from minor operations. But when it gets to that six-to-eight week point, it’s just too long.
Perhaps a tournament for the vacant title is a possibility for Battleground? It’s a throwaway PPV and a title tournament would actually get people engaged.
For now, fans will wait for word on Bryan’s surgery.