tommaso ciampa

At NXT Takeover: Orlando, Tommaso Ciampa betrayed Johnny Gargano after their loss to The Authors of Pain. The NXT Universe remains ecstatic for their feud to begin, but an ACL injury could force the fans to wait until 2018 for the Ciampa vs. Gargano rivalry to begin.

Related: The Latest On Tommaso Ciampa’s Injury, Big E Talks New Day Getting Creative Freedom

It’s being reported by Pro Wrestling Unlimited that Ciampa has undergone surgery for his ACL, but his timetable will keep him out of the ring until early 2018. Ciampa returning by the Royal Rumble is said to be very optimistic and a return in March is far more likely.

The entire situation is just unfortunate because Johnny Gargano and the fans have to wait for Ciampa’s return. In the meantime, it’s unlikely that NXT officials will keep Gargano on the sidelines for much longer, but his booking is going to be interesting to watch develop.

On paper, Johnny Gargano should receive a major babyface run in NXT. By the time Ciampa is ready to return, they can easily transition their rivalry heading into Wrestlemania season next year. However, the NXT Universe should not expect Tommaso Ciampa for a long time.