The plan originally in place for Daniel Bryan was to have him ready to return at the Money in the Bank pay-per-view. Those plans appear to be in jeopardy right now, as WWE learned over the weekend that Bryan may not be medically cleared to perform in time for the event.
Recovery time for his specific surgery known as cervical foraminotomy is estimated at eight to ten weeks and the MITB event occurs only six weeks into rehabilitation. There was high hope within WWE that Bryan would return at the ladder match featured event, but some people didn’t expect him back until SummerSlam.
As done in the past with other superstars, namely John Cena, the company may opt to bring him back early. Obviously they want Bryan back as soon as possible. The sooner he can return, the easier the decisions and planning can be made regarding the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. Right now, everything is contingent on when he can come back, so that’s why a back-up title match scenario was put in place.
Stephanie McMahon announced on this Monday’s RAW that Bryan would defend his titles against Kane in a stretcher match, IF he is able to compete. The alternate match would be placing the belts themselves on the line in the Money in the Bank Ladder Match. A qualifying match for the MITB Ladder Match took place on RAW where Dolph Ziggler tapped out to Alberto Del Rio. “The Mexican Aristocrat” is the first contender in what could be a match for the actual championship, or the MITB brief case for a future title shot at any time.
WWE is stringing along with the championship picture as long as they can, and ultimately the chips won’t fall into place until the moment a decision is made regarding Bryan’s injury recovery.