Tommaso Ciampa def. Angel Garza

Tommaso Ciampa vs. Angel Garza: WWE NXT, Oct. 16, 2019

After spending seven months on the shelf due to neck surgery, The Blackheart makes his long-awaited return to the ring.

Tommaso Ciampa is back and appears as dangerous as ever, and that could mean bad news for NXT Champion Adam Cole.

The Blackheart went a long way Wednesday toward extinguishing any doubts about his recovery from injury. In his first action since February, Ciampa showed little ring rust during a defeat ofAngel Garza, securing the victory after an elevated hanging DDT dubbed Willow's Belle.

Cole, whose title The Sicilian Psychopath still covets after being forced to relinquish it, and the rest of The Undisputed ERA appeared afterward to seemingly exploit the situation and feast on a fatigued Ciampa, but they backed off when he found a chair and his patented crutch to defend himself.

Instead, The Undisputed ERA flexed their propensity for damage in another way — and with a different victim. Kyle O’Reilly handed a USB drive to play-by-play commentator Mauro Ranallo.

Moments later, the NXT Universe saw that the device contained footage of the aftermath of an apparent vicious backstage attack by Undisputed ERA on an unconscious Velveteen Dream, who was set to challenge Roderick Strong for the NXT North American Title next week.

Ciampa’s message for Cole and his allies has clearly been received loud and clear, but they’ve responded equally in kind by showing exactly how far they’re willing to go to remain NXT’s most dominant force.

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