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4 interesting comparisons between Johnny Gargano and Shawn Michaels following NXT Takeover: Portland

Gargano and Michaels
Gargano and Michaels
Steven Wilson
Modified 18 Feb 2020

One of the highlights of NXT TakeOver: Portland was the grudge match between Finn Balor and Johnny Gargano.

Despite coming up short, it was a big evening for Johnny Wrestling as it marked his 16th match at TakeOver events - more than any other Superstar.

It is such consistency that has earned him the nickname Johnny Takeover or Mr. Takeover. To some on paper, this would indicate that he has been dominant at the event, which hasn’t been the case, with Gargano losing more often than he has won.

This sort of contrast bears a striking resemblance to an icon of the sport with quite the influence on NXT - Shawn Michaels.

Throughout his Hall of Fame career, HBK earned the moniker Mr. WrestleMania for his electrifying displays. Despite this, he too holds a losing record at his signature event, with six wins and 12 defeats to his name.

Compare this to Gargano, whose loss to Balor was his 12th at TakeOvers, propped up with just the four victories.

The comparisons don’t stop there between Mr. TakeOver and Mr. WrestleMania. I conducted some analysis of both men’s performances at the event with interesting results.

#4 Length of matches

Shawn Michaels vs Bret Hart from WrestleMania 12.
Shawn Michaels vs Bret Hart from WrestleMania 12.

Whilst not always an accurate judge of quality, there is often a correlation between match length and how good a bout often is.

Even though Michaels went over one hour with Bret Hart back at WrestleMania 12, his average Mania match length sits at 21 minutes and 20 seconds.

This is just under six minutes shy of Gargano’s average of 27 minutes and 24 seconds. Indeed, over his 16 Takeover matches, Johnny Wrestling has never had a single figure timed match, with his shortest being the first encounter between DIY and AOP from NXT Takeover: San Antonio.

HBK, on the other hand, had single figures matches in his first two WrestleManias.

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Published 18 Feb 2020, 05:35 IST
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