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WWE NXT TakeOver: Toronto results - Adam Cole beats Johnny Gargano in a hell of a match

General Manager William Regal took the suspense out of the stipulation for the third fall in their latest 2 out of 3 falls NXT title match when he told us, if necessary, Adam Cole and Johnny Gargano would fight in a weapons-covered steel cage.

Triple H & his booking team took the suspense out of whether or not Cole’s Undisputed ERA faction would leave TakeOver: Toronto draped in gold. First Kyle O’Reilly & Bobby Fish were beaten by Street Profits in the Tag title match, and then Roderick Strong came up short in his quest to take the North American championship from Velveteen Dream.

Instead, we were down to the rivalry between the two men, which stretches back years, and has given us a trilogy of highly acclaimed main events this year. Gargano showed up wearing gear inspired by Marvel Comics’ most famous Canadian:

The champion arrived at Scotiabank Arena with his usual BOOM, and it was his stipulation that was up first - a straight wrestling match. With an hour’s worth of wrestling ahead of them, the important elements of the first fall were establishing damage which could be used later... Gargano targeting Cole’s knee, and the Panama City Playboy dropping Johnny back-first on the apron to hurt Gargano’s neck.

The other storyline element was how Johnny chose to transition to the second fall. The champ brought in a steel chair to serve as a distraction so he could hit an unexpecting Gargano with a superkick. But the challenger kicked out, and then opted to take a disqualification loss when he hit Cole with the chair.

Then he pounced on a weary Cole as the street fight began, throwing the chair at him and following him into the stands. They returned to the ringside area when Gargano speared the champ through the barricade, then fought off a comeback to drop him through the Spanish announce table.

He probably should have gone for a cover there. But the dark side of Johnny Wrestling, the side who attacked Aleister Black to get another shot at Tommaso Ciampa, brought out a table and got caught. But he survived a backbreaker on a chair, and threw Cole head first into one he’d propped up in the corner. A Garga-No Escape later, and we were tied at a fall a piece.

After a break for the barbed wire encompassed structure to be lowered, hostilities resumed in the no rule, no escape third fall...

It didn’t take long for kendo sticks to be swingin’. Chairs were already in play, but when the champ tried to send Johnny through a couple of them from the top turnbuckle, he got a face full of fire extinguisher, then took a nasty looking bump on the back of a chair when a tornado DDT when awry:

Somehow, bigger spots followed, several of them when Gargano became obsessed with a sledgehammer zip-tied to the top of the cage. It led him into a Panama Sunrise, and then another one delivered from a ladder:

After a sequence which saw Gargano dodge a Last Shot which caused Cole’s injured knee to hit a chair, and the champ escape a kendo stick-aided STO with his teeth, Johnny set up two tables beneath a ladder. Cole rolled away to escape, and took a kendo stick shot and an avalanche Canadian Destroyer as a reward, but he wouldn’t stay down.

As the match approached the 60 minute mark, Johnny found some bolt cutters and climbed to cut free some barbed wire. Cole climbed to a platform draped across a corner of the top of the cage trying to escape, and Gargano caught up. A brawl at the top ended with them falling through the tables. With the barbed wire in his hair, the champ rolled over and covered his rival.

Still the champ, BAY BAY! But it’s probably not hyperbole to say neither man will ever be the same.

For a complete rundown of everything that happened in Scotiabank Arena tonight, head to our live blog here.

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