Johnny Gargano Beats Tommaso Ciampa in WWE NXT Grudge Match

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistApril 9, 2020

Photo credit: WWE.com.

In what Triple H demanded to be the conclusion of their legendary feud, Johnny Gargano defeated Tommaso Ciampa on Wednesday night's episode of WWE NXT on USA Network.

The two battled in an extended fight that got personal with trash talk and featured brutal hits inside and outside the ring:

The match finally turned with the help of Candice LeRae, who appeared to betrayย Gargano before getting a kick onย Ciampa that eventually led to the win.

Two weeks ago, the NXT founder called for the two men to put an end to their rivalry, and he vowed to find an empty building in which they could quash their issues once and for all.

Gargano vs. Ciampa had been set for NXT TakeOver: Tampa Bay the night before WrestleMania 36, but with the coronavirus pandemic forcing WWE to move The Show of Shows to the WWE Performance Center in Orlando, Florida, and cancel TakeOver, some compromises were made.

While Gargano and Ciampa broke into NXT as a highly successful tag team, they have been at odds for more than two years. Their trilogy of matches at NXT TakeOver: New Orleans, NXT TakeOver: Chicago II and NXT TakeOver: Brooklyn 4 was arguably among the best in wrestling history.

They had been scheduled to have a blow-off match at NXT TakeOver: New York last year, but Ciampa had to relinquish the NXT Championship because of a neck injury, which put things on hold.

The pair seemed to put their issues behind them when The Blackheart returned, but Gargano shockingly turned on his former DIY tag team partner at NXT TakeOver: Portland when he cost him during his NXT Championship match against Adam Cole.

Ciampa had been obsessed with getting revenge on Johnny Wrestling ever since, and it led to a wild brawl on NXT TV on March 11. They battled throughout the Performance Center, damaging equipment and creating complete and utter chaos.

The two men ascended to the top of a platform, and Gargano punched a referee who tried to stop him. Just when it seemed like Johnny Wrestling was about to put Ciampa through the announce table, The Blackheart reversed and hit Gargano with an Air Raid Crash through it instead.

It became clear at that point that Gargano and Ciampa were on a collision course. While it would have been ideal for them to do battle in front of 20,000 fans, extenuating circumstances forced WWE to get creative.

Given the history between the two, they were able to make it work, and they put on an amazing show for those watching at home.

With Gargano scoring the victory and getting the last laugh in his rivalry with Ciampa, he may be in line to move back up the card and pursue the NXT Championship that means so much to him.

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