Johnny Gargano recaptures North American Championship | #AndNEW

At NXT TakeOver WarGames a new NXT North American Champion was crowned. Johnny Gargano recaptures the North American Championship. In a triple threat match for the North American title, Johnny Gargano faced current champion Leon Ruff and former champion Damien Priest. From the lead into this match, it was becoming clear that Leon Ruff was an afterthought. As each week passed Ruff was being played off as a pawn and an afterthought in Priest’s pursuit of Johnny Gargano. However, within the last couple of weeks, it has become clear. Leon Ruff was not coming to simple compete. He was set to make a difference and once again shock the world.

As the match began it became quickly established that Ruff would have to prove himself against the two former NXT North American Champions. Strike after strike and attack after attack and each time Ruff would come back time and time again. For Gargano, he would cower and often leave Ruff in a position where Priest would lay his attack on him. However, when Priest was isolated with Gargano he wouldn’t hesitate to beat down the man with all heart and no soul.


As the match proceeded on an interesting development occurred, the infamous ‘ghost face’ disguised character would appear. The difference now however was there were several ‘ghost faces’ that would get involved in the matchup. Each time they would attempt to interfere either Priest or Ruff would thwart off their attack. As the match was approaching its closing moments, Priest would hit suicide dives onto a number of the ghost faces. His leap would take place as he would lunge over a corner turnbuckle! It appeared as though Priest was set to finish off Gargano and regain the NXT North American Championship.

Johnny Gargano recaptures North American Championship

With Priest appearing to set up Gargano another of the ghost faces would strike Priest from behind knocking him out. It left an unsuspecting Leon Ruff to get caught with a slingshot DDT by Gargano onto the champion. This would lead to a count of 1..2…3 leading to a new champion. With the collection of ghost faces lying around the ring one would stand tall. With Gargano leaving the ring as the new NXT North American champion it was revealed that the assailant was none other Austin Theory. Theory had returned to NXT after being removed from Raw as part of Seth Rollin’s group of Disciple’s. Johnny Gargano is now a three-time NXT North American Champion.