Tommaso Ciampa would rather retire than wrestle full-time on SmackDown or Raw

Tommaso Ciampa

The Blackheart of NXT - Tommaso Ciampa - really has had a whirlwind 2019.

Ciampa was called-up to the main roster in February of this year, along with Aleister Black, Ricochet and Johnny Gargano, but he and Gargano's partnership only lasted one week.

Then-NXT Champion Ciampa competed with his former tag team partner on both Raw and SmackDown that week, but it emerged a couple of weeks later that he needed neck surgery - which also meant Gargano returned to Wednesday nights.

It put him out of action for nearly eight months, and he finally returned when NXT started to go head-to-head with All Elite Wrestling in October.

Tommaso Ciampa had a very brief tenure on the main roster before suffering a neck injury

Considering he'd already made the move to Raw earlier in the year, you'd think that at some point in the future, Ciampa may return there once he has exhausted all his avenues in NXT.

But he told former WWE ring announcer Lillian Garcia on her Chasing Glory podcast that he's going to be NXT for life - and he would make a drastic decision on his career if he was forced to go to SmackDown or Raw.

“Before, I just didn’t want to [change shows] because I really believed in NXT and wanted to ride it," Ciampa said, per Cageside Seats.

"I wanted to see how far we could take it. Now it’s hit a whole different level of... there is that, but I have a little one at home and my schedule is better in NXT than it would be on the road.

"I had neck surgery and I’m not freaking stupid. I get that my window is smaller than it was and my bump card is ticking.

"I just look at like, if I’m doing 200 plus dates a year on the road with Raw or SmackDown OR I’m doing a manageable load of 30 to 50 matches with NXT - I can do four years of that in the time that I do one year on Raw or SmackDown.

Ciampa sees himself wrestling in NXT for the 'next four years' at least

"So how long can my career and portfolio grow HERE as opposed to going there.

I legitimately vocalised to them - if I have to go to Raw or SmackDown then I’m gonna retire.

"I would love to produce or coach or be apart of it, but there’s no way I’m taking on that load and going, ‘yeah, I’ll just have a six-month run and then call it quits.’ I just won’t do that. It’s not worth it to me.”

You have to think going off these comments, Ciampa didn't really want to move to the main roster in the first place earlier in the year.

But his recent injury and NXT moving to a live broadcast has made his path even clearer now - and he could even end up being the top dog on Wednesday nights in 2020 as he tries to bring 'Goldie' - the NXT Championship - back into his possession.

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