Daniel Bryan been a main event heel on SmackDown Live for 10 months now, but the perennial babyface may be turning good guy soon once again.
Bryan competed against Kofi Kingston in a losing effort at WWE's house show in Manila, Philippines (h/t WrestlingInc.com). Bryan has a knack for attacking his opponents after matches, but things were different this time around.
Not only did Bryan receive massive cheers and babyface treatment from the crowd here, but he actually shook Kingston's hand and congratulated him after the match. Fans in attendance shared what happened on Twitter, so you can see it for yourself (hat tip to WrestlingInc.com for finding these).
A Bryan babyface turn has been teased for several weeks now. He and Erick Rowan were at the center of an investigation in regards to mysterious attacks on Roman Reigns. When Bryan found out that Rowan was the culprit, he berated his long-time tag team partner and slapped him repeatedly - thus ending their working relationship.
Bryan has been attacked numerous times by Rowan ever since. On this week's episode of SmackDown Live, both Bryan and Reigns were viciously attacked by Rowan and Luke Harper, his former Bludgeon Brother and Wyatt Family partner.
Bryan surprised the WWE Universe when he turned heel in November of last year, attacking AJ Styles after winning the WWE Championship from him. Even though he's excelled as a top-tier babyface, one can argue that the "New Daniel Bryan" has been his best gimmick yet.
At any rate, it seems like Bryan's time as a heel could be coming to an end. At the end of the day, there's not a whole lot more for him to perform as the bad guy on SmackDown Live, and fans love him as a babyface anyway. There's no harm in turning Bryan back into the fan favorite again.
Bryan's Return To Face Makes Sense
With Brock Lesnar set to challenge Kofi Kingston for his WWE Championship, the former can be used as the main heel on SmackDown. Shane McMahon, Harper and Rowan will continue their respective runs as heels as well. As such, there isn't much space for Bryan to be a main event bad guy much longer. Turning him back into face is a safe play for WWE, since he's done all there is to accomplish as a villain.