WWE's black-and-gold brand of WWE NXT takes a brief hiatus from their usual home of Full Sail University in Winter Park, as they travel to their home base at the WWE Performance Center in Orlando, Florida for this week's episode of NXT On USA.
Featured below are complete WWE NXT results from Wednesday, March 18, 2020 written by EWrestling.com's Newest Female Reporter: Jamie Rush. Follow me on Twitter @JamieRush312.
WWE NXT RESULTS (3/18/2020)
Tonight's NXT on USA starts off with the "WWE Forever" opening followed by a video package highlighting the events of last week's NXT on USA.
Triple H and Tom Phillips welcome us to tonight's unique episode of NXT on USA as they stand inside the WWE Global Headquarters in Stanford, CT.
Phillips thanks H for being there with him tonight, HHH jokes about taking on multiple jobs and doing Phillips's makeup well for the show tonight.
Phillips continues on saying that tonight will be a big night where they will sit down with Rhea Ripley, also checking on things with Finn Balor, but first the 3 year rivalry between Tommaso Ciampa and Johnny Gargano will be highlighted from both men's perspective. We are sent into a video package with Tommaso Ciampa and Johnny Gargano.
Video Package: Ciampa and Gargano
Gargano sharing that he and Ciampa met in 2010 and coincidentally they were paired together often, shared rental cars, and wrestled together. Two strangers going after the same dream, eventually to become best friends.
A big group pulled to the side, as there were not a bunch of contracts, only one person could move on... Gargano and Ciampa were both cut at the same time. Gargano says he was turned down for his dream job, but rejection was something he was used to. He continues on to say that he had Ciampa by his side as they were both going through it together.
Cruiserweight Classic came on, where Johnny Gargano was involved, Ciampa was not. Ciampa suggested that he be put against Johnny Gargano for the first match. Which was the first match between the two.
They go on from the Cruiserweight Classic and become tag-team partners. Brooklyn 2 DIY vs. Revival at the Barclay Center for the championship, Gargano says they clicked as a team. The Revival retained the championship, but brought Gargano and Ciampa closer together.
It's pointed out that following that, Gargano and Ciampa both moved to Orlando, Ciampa was in Gargano's wedding and the three lived in a house together. Ciampa notes that it weighed on him heavily that Gargano submitted and lost the chance at a victory.
Gargano determined to win the title in Toronto, goes on to win with Ciampa as DIY for the NXT Tag-Team Championship. Gargano knew the people wanted them to win before, but he knew they had to win this time. Clips are shown of the two superstars during the match that won them their first Tag-Team Championship titles.
We go to commercial.
"I believe that people are loyal to you, until their needs change," Gargano states as we come back from the commercial break. DIY worked so well due to their relationship with the fans. Gargano points out it was cool to live that dream alongside Ciampa.
Ciampa states that the relationship with the fans was a good one, stating that whether they knew the whole story or not, they knew Ciampa and Gargano fought hard to get where they were and nothing was handed to them. (Several pictures are shown of Ciampa and Gargano together in many different places.)
They toured Australia, Japan, and all over the world defending their championship. Ciampa says even as they were tag-team champions, they were still growing together and learning about one another.
The music changes as Gargano states that things didn't go the way they had hoped, adding, "there's nothing we can do about that now." The shot switches to Ciampa who admits that he was pretty banged up at that time. Ciampa shares that he had two shoulders that needed prepared, two torn labrums, and that it was tough.
Ciampa adds that he didn't feel like he performed as well as he should have or could have at that point. The video switches back to Gargano who states he didn't believe Ciampa's heart was in DIY at that time. Then AOP enters the picture, big strong opponents according to Ciampa.
Gargano states that Toronto was a dream come true, however San Antonio was a nightmare. A video clip is shown of AOP taking the titles from DIY on their very first try. Gargano continues on to say that DIY had a "Championship hangover" of sorts. Gargano adds once they lost the titles, he didn't know if he or Ciampa's hearts were in it anymore, adding that TakeOver Tampa was sort of a blur.
Both had dreams of making it in NXT, the tag titles and their tag-team was thrown together, but something they grew to love. Ciampa says, "Something I've never said before, but it is true, that night in Toronto, Johnny was the star." Gargano says, "There were not a lot of Tommaso Ciampa chants, there were a lot of Johnny Wrestling chants."
At the end of the day, they won their match and re-gained their titles in what was later called the greatest tag-team match in professional wrestling. Ciampa states it was awesome to win, but Gargano out shined him that night. Gargano then adds separately that he believed Ciampa was jealous at that point.
Gargano says he knows Johnny better than anyone at this point, he isn't dumb. "I know he's gotta be thinking, at least for a second, he's gotta be thinking, what's the best play on his part?" Ciampa shares, as we go to commercial once again.
Quick Promo Before Commercial
The video clip of Charlotte Flair stating that "This is too much for you to handle" when referring to the WWE Women's Championship is aired, then the video clip of Rhea Ripley as she shares that it felt good to knock the queen on her "Royal A$$". We return to commercial break.
Ciampa and Gargano Separate Sit down Interviews (continued)
As we come back from commercial, the sit down interviews continue, Johnny Gargano speaking on what he believed was his last chance at the tag-team title with Ciampa. "Chicago, a night I will never forget," Gargano states, then adding, "a night HE will never forget. As that was the night our lives changed."
At that point we see a video clip from NXT TakeOver Chicago, May 20, 2017 which was a ladder match. AOP vs. DIY for the tag team championship. Ciampa saving Gargano at one point in the match, then Gargano pushes Ciampa out of the way, saving him.
DIY making their way to their feet as they are defeated in the match. Ciampa with his arm around the shoulder of Gargano as they make their way up the ramp. Suddenly Ciampa throws Gargano into the video screen at the top of the ramp out of nowhere. Fans look on in shock as Ciampa continues to brutally attack his best friend, Johnny Gargano following their loss at TakeOver Chicago.
We go back to the single interviews. Ciampa states he did what he had to do, it was business. It wasn't a personal decision. Gargano states that Ciampa knew he was going away for surgery and would be out, so he felt Ciampa wanted to take Gargano out with him, to make sure they were gone for the same length of time.
"Tonight wasn't our moment, it's my moment," Ciampa shares the words he spoke to Gargano. Gargano then gets an opportunity against Andrade, losing. Ciampa then sneaking up from behind and bashing him across the back with his crutch. Ciampa then shares that he cost Gargano his career, Gargano speaks on Ciampa's return costing Gargano his career.
We go to commercial once again.
As we come back from commercial, Gargano speaks on Ciampa, getting boo'd as the crowd chanted "Johnny Wrestling". Gargano then shares the events from TakeOver New Orleans. Ciampa says the Unsanctioned Match was his idea, asking Gargano to take him own during a TakeOver show. The crowd chanting, "You Suck" as Ciampa walks down the ramp.
Clips are aired from the match where Gargano gets a standing ovation as he makes his way to the ring with Ciampa. Ciampa and Gargano with a tug of war over the crutch in the center of the ring, Ciampa getting beat with the crutch followed by the GargaNo Escape. Gargano about to hit Ciampa as he ducks.
"I thought you were my brother, my best friend, DIY partner" echos as Gargano wins and the crowd chants, "Johnny Wrestling". We go to Ciampa who says Gargano thought he won at TakeOver, to which Ciampa shakes his head and points to himself stating he won.
A video is shown of Ciampa taking on Aleister Black for the NXT Championship. Ciampa said he did something Johnny couldn't do. Gargano then states Ciampa won because of him. TakeOver Brooklyn is highlighted next. Gargano states he needed to make Ciampa believe he thought like him.
DIY reforms, Ciampa says before things can go any further, he found out he had to relinquish the NXT Championship. A clip of Ciampa handing the belt to HHH is aired as we go to commercial.
As we come back from commercial break, a video is shown of Johnny Gargano going against Adam Cole in the ring, a match which was originally supposed to be Gargano vs Ciampa. Ciampa out for recover, the line up is changed, Gargano smiles, stating he didn't see it coming when Ciampa had to hand the title over to HHH.
A video is shown from TakeOver: New York where Johnny Gargano had to win the best of three falls match against Adam Cole. Gargano held his own during the match, despite the fact that Strong, Fish, and O'Reilly assisted Cole throughout. Gargano goes on to win the NXT Championship.
As Gargano is celebrating his championship, a familiar scene as Tommaso Ciampa walks up from behind, as he goes to Gargano and embraces him, congratulating him for the victory. Gargano admits he saw his best friend for a split moment following that match. No threat as Ciampa had a broken neck on top of it.
Ciampa let Gargano have that moment in New York, and let Gargano enjoy the thing he had tried his whole life for. Gargano's first title defense, he lost, Ciampa explained. Ciampa continues on to say the entire time he was away, Gargano was unable to get his footing in NXT.
Gargano says during Ciampa's return, he was stunned by the reaction from the fans. They welcomed him with open arms as they began to chant, "Daddy's Home! Daddy's Home!" Ciampa was proud to become the face of NXT as he had worked hard to get where he was, struggled through surgeries that nearly cost him everything. Ciampa wanted to get back to the NXT Championship, that he never lost.
Ciampa says he goes straight for Adam Cole, he was going to get back what belonged to him. We go to commercial again.
Tom Phillips and HHH Thoughts Thus Far
As we come back, we see Tom Phillips and HHH who point out that thus far we have been looking back on the history between Tommaso Ciampa and Johnny Gargano. Ciampa finally able to go after what belongs to him at TakeOver Portland.
HHH states that he had known Ciampa already, but this was where he realized how much this meant to him. Not a day that went by where Ciampa wasn't trying to find a way back as soon as possible. HHH says he knows what it's like to have a doctor tell him that everything could be taken away from him.
HHH finishes by stating, "So when Tommaso Ciampa said he was going to TakeOver Portland to get his life back, he really meant it. He is coming to take his LIFE back."
Ciampa and Gargano Interviews, Highlights, and Video Clips (continued)
We return to the single interviews. Ciampa states he wants Goldie back, and the title he never lost. The crowd chanting, "Daddy's Home!" Ciampa tells Cole "You're gonna have to kill me". Roderick Strong diverting the ref's attention during the match. The crowd boos. Ciampa still kicks out!
Gargano wanted to believe his best friend was back, as he rooted for his friend. Adam Cole retained his title after Gargano cost Ciampa the win. Gargano saw Ciampa and saw the same face from three years prior, he then knew nothing had changed. Ciampa then says he differs from Gargano, as he allowed Gargano to have his moment and kept private feelings aside. Not Gargano, he didn't even give him a chance.
Gargano said he fixed NXT's mistake, and the crowd's inability to see the truth. We go to clip from the Performance Center. Gargano unable to explain why he did what he did, as Ciampa attacked him all through it. Gargano says it's irony at it's best as their relationship started at the Performance Center, and now they tore the performance center apart.
The crowd chanting, "Fight Forever" to which Gargano states, "When it comes to me and Ciampa, we might do just that."
Tom Phillips and HHH Commentary
The video segment finally ends with the most recent update being from last week's attack in the Performance Center. Phillips turns it to HHH who was there during the brawl. HHH says for the two superstars to tear apart the building that once brought them together had more significance than some may think.
HHH states we haven't seen anything yet and this is far from over with both Ciampa and Gargano. Phillips states when we return, the focus will shift to Finn Balor.
Tom Phillips and Triple H Commentary (continued)
We return from the commercial break where Tom Phillips states we will still hear from Rhea Ripley tonight ahead of her monumental Wrestlemania Match against Charlotte Flair. But first, Finn Balor as many were shocked by his actions upon his return. HHH says Balor came back with that spark in his eye, the prince HHH had always hoped he would get.
Finn Balor Video Package
A video begins showing Finn Balor and his ability to embrace all things professional wrestling. Balor states he was NXT Champion for 292 days, as much as he became a part of NXT, NXT became who he was.
Balor begins, 2014, Prince Devitt, where they signed the best wrestler in the world. Balor states that he proved to be the best wrestler in the world. Samoa Joe, Nakamura, Kevin Owens... Balor says he proved to everyone that he's the best.
We go to commercial.
As we come back from commercial break, a video clip is shown of the RAW draft where Mick Foley and Stephanie McMahon announce Finn Balor was chosen in the first round of the draft. As Foley calls Finn Balor's name a second time inside the ring in the WWE arena, the crowd pops and signs for "Balor Debut" and "Balor For the Win" are shown.
Finn states WWE wanted the best wrestler in the world, and so they got Finn Balor. Balor explains his first night at Monday Night RAW, where he took down Rusev, Cesaro, and Owens. Then Roman Reigns, also loses to Balor. Three weeks later at Summer Slam, the Universal Championship match where Rollins lost to Balor as well.
The clip switches to Balor explaining where he was hurt, and HHH is asking him if he's ok. Balor's shoulder dislocated, and people felt sorry for him. 9 months of rehabilitation. Several tears to heal in his shoulder and arm. "Something's changed" Balor states. The atmosphere has changed.
Baron Corbin, Bobby Lashley, Jinder Mahal suddenly all having the best matches of their career after going against Balor. "Your welcome" Balor states. 2019 Finn Balor vs. Brock Lesnar is shown next. Balor attacking Lesnar. Balor admitted that Brock reminded him what he had been missing, that feeling against Samoa Joe, against Kevin Owens, that feeling in NXT. Lesnar beat Balor that night, but saved his life, reminding him of what he wanted to do. To go back to NXT.
Balor said for three years it was gone. Shirts, action figures, fans, autograph signings, contracts... but where was the wrestling? He wanted to get back to NXT. Finn Balor IS NXT, and he's come home. We go to commercial again.
As we come back from the commercial break, Balor said he realized he needed to stop trying to please everyone. Unable to sleep at night. He knew what he had to do. Stop pleasing everyone, and please himself. Pleasing the marketing department, pleasing the directing department, pleasing the merchandise department, pleasing the media department...what about himself?
Tired of pleasing other people, Balor at 38 years old has been doing this for 20 years, and didn't want to waste another 3 years at WWE. Balor wanted to go back to more than NXT, he wanted to go back to Balor, back to 2014, back to the Prince. Doing what he felt was right.
"Johnny Gargano, nothing personal, I had to do what was right for me." A video clip from last month on NXT is shown. Balor and Gargano at TakeOver Portland clip airs. Balor ends his interview stating simply, "Let's Dance."
HHH and Tom Phillips Commentary
HHH tells Phillips, "You come at the Prince, you best not miss." Phillips turns the focus to Rhea Ripley, who's segment is up next, as we go to commercial break.
As we come back from commercial a promo airs showing several superstars who have matches coming up at Wrestlemania which is only 18 Days Away!
Tom Phillips and HHH
Phillips starts off saying Wrestlemania is a little over 2 weeks away from Sunday where Rhea Ripley will defend her championship against the 2020 Women's Royal Rumble champion Charlotte Flair. Phillips turns to HHH.
Triple H says that what Flair did was a bold statement, and more so Rhea Ripley going against her idle is just as bold. Phillips sends us to a video showing the evolution of Rhea Ripley....
Rhea Ripley's Evolution
Ripley begins by saying that NXT is her mosh pit, sharing that she started when she was just 20 years old. A big fish in a little pond in Australia, but switching to a little fish in a big pond. Mae Young Classic, Ripley wanted to please everyone, but lost who she was.
Ripley compared to Flair and several other superstars due to the long blonde hair. Going into the second classic, Ripley said screw it, she's going to do what she wants and wear what she wants. Ripley states she knew she was on the right track as she was doing it on her terms.
Ripley stated that going into the finals with Toni Storm was wild, Ripley knew everyone wanted and expected Toni to win. Ripley said she knew she had her right where she wanted her, hitting her with the Rip-Tide for the win. Making history, Ripley made it. Ripley felt in that year and a half of NXT UK, she had beat everyone, as had Shayna in NXT.
Rhea Ripley said this was her one chance to show everyone who she was. Ripley snatching the mic from Shayna stating, "I know what you're gonna say, you've beaten everyone here" to which Shayna nods, Ripley replies, "But you haven't beaten me b*@#!" A stare down followed.
Ripley goes on to talk about winning the championship and how she knew then where she was going in her wrestling career, which was to the top. Ripley states the moment she saw Charlotte Flair win the Royal Rumble, she knew that was who she needed to take on next. Ripley states the now famous line, "to be the best you have to beat the best."
Ripley ends things saying that at this year's Wrestlemania, when Charlotte Flair shouts, "Woo!" and there's no one there to say it back, that is when Ripley will enter and leave Wrestlemania as NXT Women's Champion. Ripley says Flair needs the big arenas, Ripley is home in the performance center.
The venue for Wrestlemania might have changed, but the result won't.
Tom Phillips and Triple H Closing
Ten years in the making, but for Rhea Ripley, it's the opportunity of a lifetime. HHH says this Wrestlemania will be one to remember as the show comes to a close.
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