One of the marquee matches at this year’s WrestleMania was the WWE Championship match featuring Daniel Bryan and Kofi Kingston.
It was one of the most popular storylines of all time where Kofi Kingston was revisiting his journey in the company where he did not get to compete for the prestigious title for 11 long years. This, in turn, created Kofi-mania among the fans.
However, the story could have been different as revealed by Kofi Kingston himself. During his appearance on WWE’s After The Bell podcast, one-half of the SmackDown Tag Team Champions Kofi Kingston revealed that he wasn’t originally supposed to face Daniel Bryan for the WWE Championship at WrestleMania 35. But it was Bryan who made it happen.
Things could not have been better for Kofi Kingston as Daniel Bryan acted as the perfect heel superstar to garner more cheers for the challenger.
He understood the role far better as five years ago, he was wearing Kofi’s shoes while creating Yes-o-mania. Being perhaps the wisest wrestler in the active locker room, no one could have reprised the role better than him.
Check out Kofi’s comments on Bryan’s role at WrestleMania 35,
“[Daniel Bryan] pushed for that to happen. The plans weren’t for me to be at WrestleMania. I’m not sure who it was for Daniel to face, but Daniel went in and went to bat for me and the situation and the title match for us to happen.
He had a big part in it too. It’s a testament to his state of mind as far as advancing the business and doing the right thing for the people and the best product.
I give a lot of credit to Daniel Bryan, who I think is legitimate, like a generational talent. It meant so much more because Bryan was so hot and Bryan is just so damn good in the ring, on the mic, with his character. He was so giving with the build to the story that it meant more.”
Daniel Bryan was a breath of fresh air on SmackDown with his Planet’s Champion gimmick. When his YES nation was fading out, he had this amazing storyline with Kofi Kingston to put him over at the biggest event of them all.
As for the original planning, Mustafa Ali was scheduled to face Daniel Bryan for the WWE Championship at WrestleMania 35.
WWE also wanted to have him heading into WWE Super ShowDown 2019 in Saudi Arabia as the WWE Champion. But the plans changed after Ali suffered an eye injury just before WrestleMania 35 and missed weeks of action before that.