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5 former WWE opponents who are real-life best friends

Danny Hart
23 Aug 2019, 01:43 IST

Kevin Owens & Finn Balor and Bayley & Carmella fought for titles in NXT
Kevin Owens & Finn Balor and Bayley & Carmella fought for titles in NXT

Twenty years ago, it would have been difficult for WWE fans to know which Superstars were real-life friends and which Superstars legitimately did not get along behind-the-scenes.

Nowadays, thanks to the power of social media and the increased number of interviews that WWE’s men and women give, fans know more about this generation of performers than ever before.

During the Attitude Era, for example, The Rock and Steve Austin were involved in three WrestleMania matches against each other in the space of four years, but it was not obvious to fans at the time that the two men were good friends and that they had a huge amount of respect for each other.

In this article, looking specifically at the current WWE roster, let’s count down five former opponents who are best friends in real life.

#5 Johnny Gargano and Tommaso Ciampa

The Johnny Gargano vs. Tommaso Ciampa rivalry is among the greatest in the history of the NXT brand.

After debuting as tag partners in the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic in September 2015, the #DIY duo gradually established themselves as a popular team in 2016 by defeating names including The Vaudevillians and The Revival on NXT.

Then, following a one-on-one match against each other in the Cruiserweight Classic, Gargano & Ciampa defeated Scott Dawson & Dash Wilder at NXT TakeOver: Toronto to win the NXT Tag Team titles in a 2-out-of-3 falls match that would later be named as WWE’s Match of the Year.

On-screen, the partnership between the two men derailed in 2017 when Ciampa shockingly attacked Gargano at NXT TakeOver: Chicago, kick-starting a feud that went on to last almost two years.


Off-screen, meanwhile, Gargano revealed in a 2018 interview with ESPN that Ciampa actually lived with him and his wife, Candice LeRae, for two years during their early days in WWE.

"At the end of the day, Tommaso was in our wedding, we lived with Tommaso -- he was our roommate for two years. When we got married, we moved in together, and the first time we had our own place, Tommaso moved in with us. We were all together."
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