Johnny Gargano Looking To Cement His Legacy In NXT

Dec 11, 2020 - by Steve Gerweck

Wrestling Inc.Johnny Gargano Interview

Conducted by Wrestling Inc.’s Scott Fishman

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On beginning his third reign as WWE NXT North American Champion:

It was always my goal to take the North American championship and elevate it even higher. I want to put it on the same pedestal as the old workhorse Intercontinental championship. You always looked at that title as the match you needed to be on that show. I want the North American title to be that. I want a chance to have a title and reign and be able to defend it and go on a run because I haven’t had a chance to do that yet.

I’ve always been the underdog where it was more about the chase for me than the actual title reign. I feel like I want a reign with the North American championship to really cement my legacy.

On he and his wife Candice LaRae embracing their villainous sides:

People look at me and see I’m this prototypical white meat babyface, but I think what you’re seeing on screen right now is the most lifelike, real life Johnny Gargano there is, which is pretty crazy. Maybe Candice would say the same as well. It’s more real now than it has been. It’s a more real Candice dynamic as well, so it’s super fun to show that on screen now.

On India Harwell and Austin Theory wearing Scream masks before aligning with he and LaRae:

We found out we were going to go with a masked character. Me being me I kind of made a joke about how it should be like this, and it was the ‘Scream’ mask guy. For some reason that’s the first mask that popped in my head. Because it was around Halloween Havoc, I thought and hoped it would be around the ‘Scream’ guy. It was in a joking fashion, but the more we thought about it the more. We thought there was something there.

Especially, when you look at how the story panned out. I think one of my favorite parts is there are always two killers in ‘Scream,’ so there is this swerve. So I think there is underlying story-telling there.

On how long plans have been in place for him to align with Theory:

Theory was pictured to be with me. I wrestled him a few times in EVOLVE. I think [NXT] view it as the Triple H and Randy Orton-esque relationship, which I agreed with. I thought Theory has tons of potential obviously. He was always in the mix to be one of those guys with me. Indi as well. Me and Candice both think very highly of Indie and think she has a very bright future. So we were very happy to have her with us as well.

We likened it to Evolution in a sense. Obviously, we’re not putting ourselves on that pedestal because they are an iconic stable for many reasons. Just the idea of being able to be in the ring and mold younger talent for the future. We think that is very important. Indi being able to be around us. Austin being able to be around us. It can bring out different elements of their characters and different things the people haven’t seen on screen yet.

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