Finn Balor captured the NXT Championship for the second time in his career on this week's edition of NXT, defeating Adam Cole for the vacated title in a grueling 23-minute match. The win makes Balor the third man in the brand's history to hold the title more than once (along with Shinsuke Nakamura and Samoa Joe). His first reign, which stood as the longest at 292 days until Cole surpassed it, started in July 2015 at the Beast In the East event in Japan (against Kevin Owens) and lasted until a house show in Lowell, Massachusetts in April 2016 (against Samoa Joe).
Triple H took to social media shortly after the match and congratulated "The Prince" on his victory while posting a few throwback photos.
Through different eras, a changing brand, and bringing @WWENXT to places it’s never been before ... and where it’s going next... @FinnBalor IS #WWENXT.— Triple H (@TripleH) September 9, 2020
Congratulations!!! #NXTSuperTuesday pic.twitter.com/ZEoY6FLSlb
CHAMPION pic.twitter.com/DqIvSNEkFf— Finn Bálor (@FinnBalor) September 9, 2020
Cole also congratulated Balor on the win, then teased a rematch.
No excuses. No BS. Balor was the better man tonight...September 9, 2020
Balor was initially called up to the main roster in 2016, but after being stuck in the midcard for a few years he opted to return to NXT beginning in October 2019.
"I have to be honest, it's a little nerve-wracking," Balor told Newsweek the day after his debut. "The game has changed a lot in NXT since I was here. Seeing the match Cole and Matt Riddle put on tonight, they are two of the absolute best in-ring competitors in the world. So it's a little nerve-wracking to get into the deep end with those guys.
"It's gotta be a challenge for myself in and out of the ring, and personally, to see if I can still go," he added. "It's been a while since I've been here, and the NXT style has evolved incredibly. When I was here it was me and [Samoa] Joe, and back then, I don't want to say it was a slower pace, but it was definitely more rugged here and there. They are going fast, and it's going to be a test for me and I'm looking forward to it."
NXT will return to Wednesday nights next week. Here's the card for the show so far:
- NXT North American Championship: Damian Priest vs. Timothy Thatcher
- NXT Tag Team Championships: Breezango vs. Imperium
- Io Shirai vs. Shotzi Blackheart