NXT takes over USA Network!
Apologies to Tampa, but more of the TakeOver plan moves to television! Who stands tall as THE heart of NXT after #OneLastBeat?
- NXT Women’s Championship #1 Contender Ladder Match: Chelsea Green VS Mia Yim VS Candice LeRae VS Io Shirai VS Tegan Nox VS Dakota Kai; Shirai wins and will challenge Charlotte Flair for the title.
- Partial Replay – NXT UK 3/12/20: Finn Balor VS Alexander Wolfe w/ Imperium; Balor wins.
- Indus Sher w/ Malcolm Bivens VS Ever-Rise; Indus Sher wins.
- One Last Beat: Tommaso Ciampa VS Johnny Gargano; Gargano wins.
PLAY BY PLAY
NXT’s most intense and storied rivalry all started with one moment.
It was TakeOver: Chicago three years ago. DIY lost, and Tommaso Ciampa lost it! A throw into an LED wall and an Air Raid Crash off the announce desk through spare tables sparked a saga. “In the history of NXT, there has been no greater rivalry, no personal issue more intense than what we have witnessed over the last few years between Johnny Gargano and Tommaso Ciampa.” Both men have given blood, sweat and tears while trying to take the other man’s heart and soul. The Black Heart and the Rebel Heart have fought each other over and over, and tonight it all ends. Two walk into a building, one walks out, and “it’s done.” When it is over, it is over forever. This will be Gargano VS Ciampa, #OneLastBeat.
NXT Women’s Championship #1 Contender Ladder Match: Chelsea Green VS Mia Yim VS Candice LeRae VS Io Shirai VS Tegan Nox VS Dakota Kai!
There is a NEW NXT Women’s Champion after WrestleMania, and yet it is also an old one. Charlotte Flair is back on top of the black ‘n’ yellow, but she’s already going to have a challenger lined up! Who among this super six pack stands atop the ladder as #1 Contender?
The bell rings and all six women stare down. Then things spark into brawls! Tegan of course goes after Dakota and Candice goes after Shirai! Mia goes after Green in a corner and stomps her down. Shirai stomps Candice while Dakota bumps Tegan off buckles. Shirai hits a swinging meteora! But Dakota throws Shirai out! Dakota clubs Mia and Green scurries away. Dakota tells Raquel to get her a ladder, and a tall one! Raquel does as ordered while Dakota stomps whoever moves. The ladder is in but Mia and Candice dropkick it back out at Raquel! They glare at Dakota, who tries to calm them down. But then Dakota bumps into Tegan, and she stops smiling. Dakota ends up in a 3v1 punch cycle!
Candice throws haymakers and chops and fires off! Tegan runs in to uppercut Dakota, then gives Green a shot just because. Mia adds on to Dakota and Green, then so does Candice! Green tumbles down and Tegan gives Dakota the CANNON-BOAR! Mia adds her CANNON-BALL, and they both help Candice hit a BIG cannonball! These three feel good working together, but then Candice gets clear as Shirai flies in! Shirai takes Mia and Tegan down with a missile dropkick! Candice runs back in but gets a flapjack! The Evil Genius goes out to drag a new ladder from under the ring. Meanwhile, Robert Stone helps Green get a table! Shirai has her ladder in but Candice climbs it like steps! Shirai shakes her off and kicks her low, to Alabama lift! Candice fights free and lifts, but Shirai resists.
Shirai blocks a kick but not the enziguri! She staggers, but still SHOTEIS Candice back! Green gives them BOTH a bulldog to the ladder! The Hot Commodity clears the ring with a grin as NXT goes to break.
NXT returns and Green now has a chair. But Mia trips her and she falls on said chair! Mia drags Green out to throw hands but Green throws them right back. Tegan gets in but Dakota follows to throw hands. The former Team Kick partners brawl fast and furious! Tegan choke grips but Dakota breaks free to Scorpion Kick! Tegan rebounds to HEADBUTT! She runs but into a big forearm! Dakota runs but Tegan uppercuts! Tegan runs but Dakota follows Around the World to BOOT! Dakota runs corner to corner but Tegan follows! Dakota dodges her at the last second, but the boot is blocked to another uppercut! Tegan choke grips and CHOKE SLAMS! Tegan sees Green slide a ladder in and stands on it. They tug-o-war, and Tegan rams Green into railing!
Tegan stands the ladder up under the contract briefcase. She climbs up but Dakota hurries after her! Dakota and Tegan are both up top and Dakota SMACKS Tegan off the top! But Candice YANKS Dakota down and Dakota SMACKS off a rung! Tegan clings to her side and Candice climbs up. The two friends hesitate, but Green and Dakota attack in that opening! Green DECKS Tegan and Dakota feeds Candice to buckles! Dakota and Green climb and brawl but get yanked down by Mia and Shirai! Mia knocks Green down and Shirai kicks Kai. They climb now, but Candice returns with a ladder. She and Tegan bring that over while Dakota goes back after Shirai. Dakota kicks Shirai out of the ring and Green goes after Mia while Candice and Tegan set up this other ladder.
Mia kicks Green away while Tegan and Candice climb. Dakota returns to go after Tegan and Green goes after Candice. Green brings Candice down then goes back after Mia. Mia elbows Green away and keeps climbing. Dakota and Tegan take each other out, leaving Mia alone to reach for the briefcase! But Candice pulls her back down! Candice swings, Mia ducks, and wrenches Candice’s arm, PROTEC YA NECK! Mia leaves Candice down and heads up again, but Green SMACKS her with a chair! Green tosses the chair to Mia to then BOOT, but she misses! Green is caught in the rungs of a ladder set in the corner! Mia gives Green’s knee a CHAIR SHOT! Green screams and Mia pushes her out of the ring. But Shirai returns to basement dropkick Mia! Shirai GUILLOTINE CATAPULTS Mia into the ladder!!
Shirai shouts that this is her time! She hurries up the ladder, but RAQUEL pushes her over!! Shira falls onto everyone else! The irony is that Raquel just took out Dakota, who she’s supposed to be helping! NXT goes to break while everyone is down!
NXT returns as Raquel guards the ladder. She throws Candice out then makes sure everyone else is down. Robert Stone says Green is not a threat now, so Raquel hurries to help Dakota. They go into the ring, and Raquel even lifts Dakota on her shoulders. Raquel climbs for Dakota, but Mia returns! Mia attacks Raquel but Raquel boots her down! Dakota is at the top but Candice yanks her down! Raquel climbs up and drags Mia up by her hair! Mia fights back with body shots and forearms! Mia gets under Raquel and wants to bomb! Raquel holds on but Tegan joins in! Tegan choke grips Raquel, and together, she and Mia SUPER CHOKE SLAM BOMB Raquel THROUGH A TABLE!! But Mia goes all out for it, taking herself out with Raquel!!
Tegan watches Mia and Raquel in the wreckage a little too long, and Dakota goes after Tegan on the top rope! Dakota runs side to side, to BOOT Tegan down! Tegan crashes through a ladder bridge!! So much carnage at ringside!! Dakota sees she’s alone with Raquel down, and Candice is climbing! Dakota hurries to stop her, and they’re both up top. They both have a hand on the case, but Candice SMACKS it off Dakota’s head! Shirai springboards in to SMASH Dakota’s head off the ladder! Dakota falls but even Candice stumbles back. Shirai ducks Candice to waistlock and GERMAN SUPLEX! BUZZSAW MISSES! Candice waistlocks and GERMANS Shirai!
Robert Stone says this is Green’s chance! Green hobbles up and into the ring with him cheering all the way. Green drags herself up the rungs but her bad leg is too much. Stone throws off his jacket to climb up on the other side! He hesitates the higher he goes, and then helps Green from the other side. They’re almost there, but Shirai and Candice tip the ladder over! Green falls onto the ropes and gets tangled up!! Everyone is down, but Shirai and Candice are still in the ring! They both bring the ladder back up and start to climb again. Candice reaches the top first, but Shirai stops her from touching the case. They brawl way up high, back and forth. Candice throws haymakers and Shirai wobbles.
Shirai blocks Candice’s hand, then rakes her eyes!! Candice falls back onto the corner ladder! Shirai finishes the ascension, and grabs the briefcase off the hook! Shirai wins!!
Winner: Io Shirai (NEW #1 Contender to the NXT Women’s Championship)
The Evil Genius shouts her own praises in Japanese as she literally sits atop everyone else! But will she finally be at the very peak of the NXT Women’s Division after facing the Queen of All Eras?
NXT looks back on The Prince VS Imperium!
After defeating Johnny Gargano in Portland, Finn Balor openly wondered what his next move would be. To that effect, NXT UK’s Fabian Aichner & Marcel Barthel told Balor that it would be to fall in line behind The Ring General, WALTER. Balor refused and was beaten down for it that very night. But then Balor would turn the tables and go to NXT UK to take the fight to them!
Balor glares at Walter as he stomps Wolfe down. “You want some, Walter?!” Balor springboard stomps over and over, and says they’re all for Walter! The ref backs Balor off and Wolfe slowly rises. Fans are thunderous as Balor hits Wolfe with a SLINGBLADE! Fans troll Imperium with “Walter is a baby~!” Balor aims from a corner but Aichner and Barthel go after Balor! He fights them off but Wolfe LARIATS Balor down! The referee EJECTS Imperium! Imperium protests but fans sing, “Hey hey hey~! Good bye!” Balor and Wolfe rise, and Balor glares as he throws forearms. Wolfe gives them back and we have a brawl!
Balor runs into a EuroUpper and enziguri! Wolfe reels Balor in, but Balor slips out of the bomb to trip up and DOUBLE STOMP Wolfe! Fans fire up as Balor is in the corner. Wolfe denies the Slingblade to roll Balor up, TWO!! BOOT and GERMAN! Bridging cover, TWO! Wolfe drags Balor up to a fireman’s carry but Balor slips around to a sleeper! Dragon sleeper, elbow drop DDT! Balor aims from a corner again, SHOTGUN DROPKICK! Wolfe bounces off buckles and Balor heads up top! COUP DE GRACE!! But Balor won’t end it there, he gives Wolfe 1916! Cover, Balor wins!
Winner: Finn Balor, by pinfall
Wolfe went at Balor, but he missed and got taken down instead!
Finn Balor speaks.
“Walter. You and I share a lot of traits.” They both do things on their own terms. They both have control over their own worlds. But here they are, both poised to make their next moves. This time will pass, and Walter will learn that the NXT UK Championship he holds is on borrowed time. Will the Prince take over the UK when he and Walter meet again?
Indus Sher w/ Malcolm Bivens VS Ever-Rise!
Bivens Enterprises brings a new destructive force to the NXT Tag Team Division. Rinku and Suarav already showed the Bro what they can do. Will we all see just how much more they have in their arsenal?
The teams sort out and Rinku starts against Matt Martel. They tie up, Martel waistlocks and headlocks, then wristlocks and wrenches. Rinku isn’t bothered at all and he throws Martel off! Chase Parker tags in and Rinku dares him to bring the fight. Rinku swings, Parker dodges and Parker sucker punches Suarav! Parker throws hands on Rinku and CHOPS! Rinku just roars and throws Parker at ropes! Parker holds ropes to boot back! Tag to Martel, and Ever-Rise throws hands on Rinku together! Martel powers Rinku to the corner and Parker adds the enziguri! Martel CHOPS Rinku then tags Parker before tripping Rinku up. Parker slingshots to drop an elbow on Rinku’s back! Bivens is mad as Parker covers, but Rinku powers out at ONE! Rinku is up and LARIATS Parker down!
Rinku drags Parker up and brings him to the corner. Tag to Suarav and Indus Sher double whips. They double shoulder Parker down! Suarav drags Parker up to scoop and SLAM! He glares at Martel before looming over Parker. Suarav tags Rink and they bring Parker up for a double HIP TOSS! Rinku stays between Parker and Martel as Martel rallies. Rinku BOOTS Parker down! And stomps him down to the Bivens Enterprises corner. Rinku drags Parker up to scoop for a sidewalk slam! Tag to Suarav and Rinku DECKS Martel! Indus Sher drags Parker up to whip into an open corner. Suarav corner clotheslines hard! Bivens is pleased as Suarva tags Rinku back in. Indus Sher mugs Parker in the corner, then Rinku CLUBS Parker down. Rinku drags Parker up and CLUBS him again!
Parker throws forearms back and scrambles, but Rinku drags him away from Martel. Rinku DECKS Martel again then tags Suarav. Indus Sher whips Parker to a corner. Rinku runs in for a corner clothesline, and feeds Parker to Suarav’s BOOT! They finish this with the backbreaker elbow drop! Cover, Indus Sher wins!
Winner: Indus Sher, by pinfall
The lions have destroyed their first opponents and Bivens promise they’ll do more of the same! Will the NXT Tag Team Championships simply be prey for Rinku and Suarav?
Adam Cole speaks.
“Bravo, Velveteen.” He beat Bobby Fish because he got lucky. Unfortunately for Dream, lightning never strikes twice. Especially when it comes to the greatest NXT Champion ever in Adam Cole Baybay. Cole explains something to Dream: Dream does not deserve a shot! Dream is a pretender but Cole is the real deal! Cole has proven it time and again. How many times does he have to explain it to Dream so Dream understands? If Dream keeps pushing, maybe Cole will one day feel the need to end the Experience. How about shattering the spotlight? And when that happens, there will be nothing Dream can do about it. And that is Undisputed.
NXT shares Charlotte Flair’s post-match interview after Night 2.
Charly Caruso starts to congratulate her, but The Queen says she doesn’t need anyone to do that. Charlotte says that when she was little, Ric Flair had custom cars, custom robes, and custom suits. Everyone thinks the suit makes the man, but no. Ric always said the man makes the suit. So therefore, the title doesn’t make the wrestler, it is the wrestler that makes the title. Charlotte has been Raw Women’s Champion, SmackDown Women’s Champion, and even retired the Diva’s Championship. Now she is a two-time NXT Women’s Champion. Rhea Ripley was alright. But she does what ever other woman does: Bow down to The Queen. “WOO~!” Will Charlotte once again make the black ‘n’ yellow brand bow to her?
NXT also shares Rhea Ripley’s own post-match interview.
The Mosh Pit Kid can’t help but be emotional after losing the title she fought so hard to win. “She’s a lot better than I expected.” That’s all she can say now, but when and where will the Nightmare be back?
One Last Beat: Tommaso Ciampa VS Johnny Gargano!
The Cruiserweight Classic. TakeOver: Chicago I and II. TakeOver: Brooklyn 4, and everywhere in between. Three years culminates in one night. Which heart of NXT takes its #OneFinalBeat?
Johnny Gargano pulls up to the location HHH found for him and Ciampa. Candice is also in the car and walks with him. Gargano even redesigned his DIY shirt to be #TJGW. Gargano tells Candice it’ll be alright, and she gives him something wrapped in a brown paper bag. She drives off to wait as Gargano heads inside. HHH waits in the ring, and both Gargano and Ciampa arrive at the same time. “Alright, guys. Right on time.” This is where it ends. It starts in this ring and ends in this ring. It doesn’t matter what they do to each other, but when it is done, it is done. Senior referee Drake Younger will officiate the match to simply count pins and submissions. Nothing more, nothing less. HHH tosses down his chair and says that once he’s out the door, “it’s on.”
HHH leaves the ring, walks to the exit, and looks back one last time before pushing through the doorway. Gargano and Ciampa both get in the ring, keeping their eyes on each other, and HHH’s chair. They step forward, but Ciampa kicks the chair aside. Ciampa says they don’t need that, it’s about him and Gargano. Gargano throws the first punch and it begins! Ciampa backs Gargano down but Gargano hits low. Gargano throws haymaker after haymaker! He whips but Ciampa reverses, and Gargano takes an HBK tumble up the buckles. Gargano gets in but Ciampa stomps him down. Ciampa throws Gargano out but Gargano stays on the apron. Ciampa runs but into an enziguri! Gargano slingshots in, but into a knee! Ciampa catches his breath and NXT goes to break.
NXT returns and Ciampa grabs HHH’s chair after all. He aims at Gargano but Gargano hits low! Gargano reaches for the chair but Ciampa kicks him down! Gargano curses from pain in his arm but Ciampa is on him with stomps. Ciampa says they were brothers, but asks who turned on who. He stomps Gargano’s legs then guillotine catapults him into the bottom buckle! The ref checks on Gargano while Ciampa catches his breath. Ciampa knows Gargano isn’t going to stop this here, he’s “Johnny Wrestling.” Ciampa claws at Gargano’s face as he brings him up against the ropes. Gargano resists the DDT and drags Ciampa out. Gargano swings Ciampa’s leg into the post! And then again! And again! Ciampa flops down to the floor but he won’t let the ref check on him.
Gargano mocks Ciampa’s pain as he boots him down. “How long’s it been? How does it feel?” Gargano throws hands on Ciampa while he’s down on the floor. Ciampa crawls but Gargano drags him up. Gargano brings Ciampa over for a suplex but Ciampa fights him off. Ciampa suplexes Gargano to SLAM him into the post! The ref checks on Gargano again but just as Ciampa said, he isn’t quitting. Ciampa clears off a spare table but Gargano gets in the ring. Ciampa pursues but Gargano stomps away on him! Gargano kicks Ciampa out to then build speed and DIVE! Direct hit and Ciampa tumbles away! Gargano sits on the apron and mocks “Daddy” with the slow clap and a pat on the back. Gargano brings Ciampa up to throw into random furniture! And then boot him further in!
Gargano pushes things aside to drag Ciampa back up for more punches. He dares Ciampa to get up after each one, and he punches him so hard, the trash can starts to break! “Heart and soul of NXT? This is it?” Gargano drags Ciampa up and SMACKS him with the trash can lid! Ciampa writhes but Gargano just brings out a new trash can. Gargano SMASHES it on Ciampa’s back! Gargano says he’s disappointed in Ciampa, because he expected more. He puts Ciampa back in the ring and looms over him. Ciampa throws hands but Gargano stomps him down for it! Gargano mocks Ciampa for all the talk of being tough. How many surgeries did he come back from? The torn labrum gets a JAB from the chair! The torn ACL gets a JAB from the chair! And who can forget the neck! Gargano JAMS Ciampa in the back!
The ref checks on Ciampa but Gargano won’t let this stop. Gargano takes a seat and says this is what Ciampa wanted. The ref says this is going too far, but Gargano doesn’t care. Gargano brings the chair up again, to SMACK Ciampa on the back! Gargano paces and grins. “Don’t worry, old man. You’re not going to last much longer.” Gargano wedges the chair into a corner then brings Ciampa up. But Ciampa reverses the whip to send Gargano into the chair! Both men are down and writhing in pain as NXT goes to break.
NXT returns again as Ciampa stands up. He goes after Gargano but Gargano throws him out of the ring! Gargano slingshots, into a trash can lid SMACK! Things are even now but Ciampa still has the lid. “You want to see how my ACL’s doing?!” Ciampa uses the lid for a FULL METAL KNEE! Gargano flounders but Ciampa SMACKS him down again! Gargano reaches and grabs HHH’s chair but Ciampa stands on his hand! And stomps it! Ciampa brings the chair around and puts it around Gargano’s neck! Flashbacks to TakeOver: Chicago II’s brutal Street Fight! But this time, Ciampa throws Gargano into a post!! Then he gives back all the mocking applause and pats on the back, before stomping away! “QUIT! QUIT!” But Gargano refuses.
Ciampa takes off his shirt as Gargano crawls. Ciampa throws cables down on Gargano, then finds the trusty old crutch. Nostalgic, isn’t it? Ciampa brings the crutch over and Gargano begs for mercy. But Ciampa uses it to choke Gargano! Ciampa says if Gargano wants to talk injuries, he’ll talk injuries! Ciampa powered through the torn ACL in that tag match for Gargano! Not for the fans, but for him! Ciampa kicks Gargano around, but they end up by the table. Ciampa throws more haymakers but Gargano hits back, so Ciampa stomps him back down. Gargano flounders about and finds a fire extinguisher! Another flashback! Gargano grins while Ciampa grabs a water bottle. Ciampa washes out his eyes but Gargano is right on him.
Gargano brings Ciampa over to a table and lifts, but Ciampa resists. Ciampa throws body shots and forearms to then reel Gargano in. Ciampa lifts and POWERBOMBS Gargano through the table!! Gargano gasps and sputters and Ciampa’s eyes still sting, but this is far from over. Ciampa says this is going to end in the ring, so that’s what’ll happen. Another flashback as Ciampa undoes the strings on the ring mat! Ciampa stomps Gargano down for good measure before pulling the ring mats up! The ref says THIS is too far, but Ciampa also ignores him. The wood is exposed once again! “I’m sick of the lies! I lived with him so I know!” Ciampa goes out to fetch Gargano, but Gargano throws cable. Gargano misses wide right and Ciampa kicks him down for it. Ciampa brings Gargano up for more haymakers and Gargano flounders into trash.
Gargano heads for the door, but Ciampa says it’s supposed to end in here! Ciampa pursues, and Gargano RAMS him with a road case! And then bounces him off the top! Gargano throws Ciampa into the side of a truck trailer! And again! Gargano punches Ciampa against the tires over and over and over! Gargano goes back for the road case, and runs it at Ciampa! Ciampa moves and the case hits tires instead. Ciampa crawls under the trailer to go out the other side. Gargano looks for Ciampa but he’s already gotten on top of the cab. Ciampa then goes up to the top of the trailer. Gargano sees him up there and now it’s a stand-off. Ciampa dares Gargano to join him, so he does. The ref follows them and the two brawl! They throw hands fast and furious over and over and over!
Gargano SUPERKICKS Ciampa, but Ciampa CHOPS and CHOPS and CHOPS! Ciampa spins into another SUPERKICK! Gargano brings Ciampa up but Ciampa BOOTS him back! Ciampa drags Gargano to the edge but Gargano elbows him. “Is this fun!? I think it’s fun!!” Ciampa stomps Gargano but Gargano hits back! Gargano drags Ciampa to the edge now, in the GargaNO Escape! Gargano cranks back on Ciampa’s neck but lets go when his grip gives up. He drags Ciampa up but Ciampa blocks the kick! Ciampa kicks back but Gargano SUPERKICKS anyhow! Ciampa BOOTS, Gargano SUPERKICKS again, but both men fall over! And NXT goes to break!
NXT returns once again and Gargano hobbles his way back to the arena. Ciampa rises and follows after. Ciampa doesn’t see Gargano until Gargano kicks him from the folded bleachers! And then Gargano LEAPS onto Ciampa, sending them both crashing through a table!! Gargano drags himself away while Ciampa gasps and sputters. Gargano rains down fists on Ciampa and says it ends how it started. He drags Ciampa up and into the ring. They’re on the exposed wood now, and Gargano throws in trash can lids and steel chairs. Gargano stalks over to Ciampa and throws more haymakers in the corner. Gargano picks up speed as he punches and stomps Ciampa down! “This is it!” He puts Ciampa up top, throws more haymakers, then climbs up to join him.
Gargano brings Ciampa up in a fireman’s carry but Ciampa clubs and elbows back! Ciampa picks up speed, too, and then keeps going. Ciampa brings Gargano up, for a SUPER AIR RAID CRASH TO THE FLOOR!! The referee can’t believe what these two are doing to each other! He checks them both but they’re somehow still moving. Ciampa sits up while Gargano feels around. Gargano finds the ring frame but Ciampa is the one to bring him up and in. Ciampa covers, TWO!! Gargano refuses to be the heart that dies and NXT goes to another break.
NXT returns once again, and Ciampa hobbles ringside. He finds the crutch and brings it back to the ring. This is yet another flashback as he aims at Gargano. But Gargano SMACKS Ciampa’s bad knee with the trash can lid! Gargano drags Ciampa in, and uses the crutch to trap an arm! Ciampa resists but Gargano gets it around! It may not be a knee brace, but it’s still being used in the crossface! Ciampa endures as Gargano cranks back! The two move around and Ciampa grabs the lid! Ciampa SMACKS Gargano in the face! Gargano SMACKS him back with it! And again! And again and again and again! Gargano only stops because he gets tired. Both men are sore and exhausted, but it is Gargano who uses the crutch now. Gargano flounders about as he supports himself with it, and SUPERKICKS Ciampa back down!
Ciampa is in a daze but Gargano brings him up again. Gargano supports himself on the crutch again, for yet another SUPERKICK! Ciampa teeters over and Gargano flounders about. Gargano shouts at Ciampa, “You’re a failure!” A failure as a man! As a husband! And as a father!! But Ciampa laughs?! Gargano sits him up and dares him to keep laughing. Ciampa is a monster, and he’ll finally pay! Gargano swings but Ciampa dodges! Ciampa kicks low then stomps Gargano! Ciampa has the crutch to hit Gargano over and over and over and over, until the crutch breaks apart! He wants Gargano to say all that again! He shouts in Gargano’s face about it! “You’re a piece of s*it!” Ciampa knows Gargano isn’t done, so he dares him to get back up. But Ciampa sits down to catch his breath, and NXT takes one last break.
NXT returns as Gargano sits up. Ciampa aims with the jagged crutch, but Gargano ducks! Gargano goes for a headlock but Ciampa slips out to use the crutch in a crossface! Ciampa gives Gargano a taste of his own medicine as he cranks back! The ref asks Gargano if he’s done, but Gargano pokes the ref in the eye!! The financial punishment doesn’t matter, just as long as Gargano doesn’t lose the match! Ciampa lets go of Gargano in frustration, and runs at Gargano. But Gargano moves, and the ref is hit with the Psycho Knee!! Younger goes down and Gargano SMACKS Ciampa with the crutch!! Gargano flounders after Ciampa and puts him back in the ring. But what doe sit matter without a ref?! Ciampa gets Gargano with the DRAPING DDT TO HARD WOOD!! The final flashback needed to win, but there’s no one to count!!
Ciampa sits against the ropes, completely exasperated. And yet, Gargano reaches for his hand, like in the days of their friendship. Ciampa pulls his hand away from Gargano, and finds the crutch again. Or, what’s left of it. Gargano has the other piece of the crutch! Ciampa stalks up behind Gargano, but runs into a SUPERKICK! Gargano swings but into a boot! Both men have pieces of crutch, and they both SMASH the other! Candice finally walks in, perhaps wondering what’s taking so long. And she sees them both down in the ring. She’s almost in tears as she joins the two. “What’re you guys doing?! Stop!!” Ciampa and Gargano realize she’s there, and back away to opposite ends. Candice asks who this Johnny even is. And she asks if Ciampa is happy doing this to his friend and her husband.
But then she dares him to finish it. Go ahead, they’ve gone this far. Gargano reaches for Candice, but she LOW BLOWS HIM!? WHY, CANDICE, WHY!? She leaves without another word, and even Ciampa seems speechless. Ciampa kneels by Gargano’s side, because Candice just did something far worse than anything he has done tonight. Ciampa again has compassion for his friend, and helps him sit up. They stand, but Candice returns to LOW BLOW Ciampa!!! And Gargano laughs?! This was the plan all along! Because the thing wrapped in paper before, was a CUP!! A protective athletic cup protected Gargano’s Johnny! “You lose!” Gargano drags Ciampa up and the ref comes to, in time for Gargano to STEAL the Fairy Tale Ending!! Cover, Gargano wins!!
Winner: Johnny Gargano, by pinfall
Mr. & Mrs. Wrestling concocted a scheme that no one saw coming! And now, Ciampa can never get his revenge. What happens now that this feud has had its #OneFinalBeat?
An incredible second part to the spread out TakeOver card! The only real low parts of tonight were in the middle. I appreciate getting some NXT UK footage to fill for time but I feel like there could’ve been more to Finn Balor calling out Walter. If the timeline was different and TakeOver went as originally intended, we probably would’ve gotten a great NXT UK Championship match in Walter VS Balor that then also tied into NXT UK’s Dublin event. But WWE surely has all of this in their back pocket for when the world gets over the virus. And while replaying the Raw package of Charlotte’s win, complete with Charlotte’s interview, thankfully we got Rhea’s too. Rhea has her own real-life problems with her work visa, but hopefully that gets sorted quickly so she can come back.
Obviously Indus Sher was going to win, but I’m surprised they let Ever-Rise do as much as they did. Word is that there will have to be big changes to both the NXT Tag Team and Cruiserweight Championship plans since there’s crossover with the UK that can’t happen now. A shame if titles are stripped, but at least the WWE would be showing more consistency in the rules of defending a title. The Women’s Ladder Match was an incredible opener, and I’m thrilled Io Shirai is the #1 contender. As I’ve been saying about Kairi Sane wanting to go back to Japan, Shirai is in the same boat (no pun intended given Kairi is the Pirate Princess). Shirai winning this match doesn’t guarantee she wins the title when it’s Charlotte she’ll be challenging. But at the same time, a loss to Charlotte doesn’t mean Shirai is gone. Yet.
The #OneLastBeat/#OneFinalBeat (I hate it when WWE changes their marketing) was incredible, too. It’s hard to follow great cinematic matches like the Boneyard or the Firefly Fun House, but the one thing this had was that it was an actual match. But this one was definitely the best thing NXT put on since having to do Empty Arena shows. I loved that this was just dripping with references to everything over the last three years. It especially focused on the Unsanctioned Match to get Gargano his career back, and the Street Fight thereafter. But the best was the twist of Candice’s Heel turn. She was the only one not to go Heel yet, so that adds a new layer to this. I’m still lost as to the motivations, though. Was there an affair we don’t know about? Either way, great stuff and I’m ready for what’s next.
My Score: 9.3/10