Gargano gains retribution, new era dawns in NXT TakeOver: New Orleans
Johnny Gargano’s quest for retribution finally paid off as he beat friend-turned-foe Tommaso Ciampa in an unsanctioned match in the main event of NXT TakeOver: New Orleans Saturday (Sunday Manila time) at Smoothie King Center.
Gargano made his ex-teammate submit to his STF, locking in the hold with a neck brace from his Gargano Escape submission to finally end the highly-physical and highly-emotional match.
That allowed him to not only avenge all the heartache his former #DIY partner dealt him over the past year, but also get his job back in NXT as he celebrated the triumph with wife Candace LeRae.
Aleister Black also became the new NXT Champion, topping Andrade “Cien” Almas.
Zelina Vega tried to interfere in the conclusion of the bout with a top rope crossbody, but Black dodged as Almas made the catch. That opened the opportunity for the challenger to nail the Black Mass and get the three-count to signal a new era for the developmental scene.
Roderick Strong also made a shocking turn in the triple threat match for the NXT Tag Team Championship, helping Adam Cole and Kyle O’Reilly of the Undisputed Era to retain their belt and win the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic.
With the Authors of Pain down on the floor, Pete Dunne was about to win his side the titles after hitting O’Reilly with the Bitter End, but Strong stopped the pin and delivered a backbreaker to the WWE United Kingdom Champion. He then put O’Reilly over Dunne and shortly after, joined the heel faction.
It was a grueling night for Cole, who also became the inaugural NXT North American Champion in a six-man ladder match in the show’s opener.
He knocked Ricochet off the ladder to retrieve the new title and best a loaded field which included EC3, The Velveteen Dream, Killian Dain, and Lars Sullivan.
Shayna Baszler was also crowned as the new NXT Women’s Champion as she choked out Ember Moon to get the submission win.
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