December 05, 2011

STILL CONVINCED
The show begins as KURT ANGLE makes his way down to the ring, as Josh Daniels and Scott Michaels review his confrontation with Heavyweight Champion CM Punk at the start of last week’s show. In the ring, Angle says that everyone in Portland knows that he should be the Heavyweight Champion. He says that CM Punk stole the title away from him, and that he is going to so whatever he can to get the belt back. Angle says that he wants his shot at CM Punk, one-on-one, to prove who the better wrestler is; and to see who the rightful Champion is. But, Angle says, that there is someone standing in his way: Kaz. Angle says that, outside of winning the Wicked Games Tournament, Kaz hasn’t done anything during his time in the HWL, and that alone should take him out of the title match at Caged Rage. Angle then says that he wants to take Kaz out of the match, officially, and challenges Kaz to a number-one contenders match, later tonight!

KAZ makes his way onto the stage, and says that Angle just can’t get it through his head that he got beat by someone better at Wicked Games. He tells Angle that now, because he can’t admit that, he’s going to try to get his way. Kaz says he doesn’t want to give Punk a huge ego, but that credit is deserved; and that Angle needs to live with that. But, Kaz says that, because Angle doesn’t think he deserves to be number-one contender, that he will accept Angle’s challenge, and meet him in the main event. Kaz then leaves the stage, as Angle stands in the ring, smiling, and Anarchy goes to commercials.

Commercial Break

David Otunga pinned Jeff Hardy with the Verdict in 0:13:57.
Rating: *** ½

David Otunga came into this match, after having beaten Jeff Hardy at Wicked Games - no thanks to Shane Hagadorn’s interference - and a week after costing Hardy a match against Randy Orton, looking confident. But, he was not expecting the offense that Hardy came out with at the start of the match. Hardy looked impressive, using his speed - and chairs - to take Otunga off his game. Just a couple weeks before Caged Rage, Otunga was still waiting to hear about a match-up for him and his partner Chris Hero; but based on how he looked at the early going of this match, anyone would’ve taken him up on the offer. But, things quickly changed as Otunga caught Hardy in a power slam, getting a two-count. Otunga then took Hardy outside the ring, and used everything in sight to wear him down. Back in the ring, Otunga locked in a choke hold - coming very close to getting himself disqualified - before hitting the Verdict for the 1-2-3.

After the match, Otunga left the ring, celebrating as Shane Hagadorn followed suit.

Commercial Break

HAMADA HAS A DEMAND
As Anarchy returns, Peter Bradshaw is shown in his office, as Hamada storms in. Speaking in broken English, Hamada tells Bradshaw that she is tired of Daffney attacking her, just because Daffney knows she’s not as good a wrestler as Hamada. She says that, last week, her payback wasn’t enough, and she wants to face Daffney at Caged Rage. Bradshaw, thinking of the possibilities, tells Hamada that if it’s what she wants, he can’t deny the fans a match that they want to see. Bradshaw signs the match for December 18th.

[Non-Title Match]:
Daffney pinned Velvet Sky with the Lobotomy in 0:14:34.
Rating: ** ¾

“The Demonic Princess” has found herself rather busy as of the last couple weeks, with her on-going feud with newcomer, Hamada. Earlier tonight, we saw Hamada demand a match against Daffney at Caged Rage, but her hands will full tonight with the Women’s Champion, Velvet Sky. These two Vixens have had a very storied past, as they traded the Women’s Title during the start of 2011. They’ve grown to know a lot about the other, and tonight, there were plenty of counters and re-counters, as both women jockeyed for position. Velvet went for the Beauty Mark, but Daffney was able to roll out of the ring. Velvet rolled out too, giving chase, as Daffney rolled back into the ring, attacked the Champion as she re-entered. Daffney wasted no time in hitting the Lobotomy to pick up the upset victory.

After the match, Daffney grabbed a microphone and said that she say Hamada’s little “demand”, and that a match at Caged Rage would be the perfect change for Daffney to avenge her loss. Daffney warned Hamada that she didn’t know what she was getting into, before dropping the microphone and heading to the back.

Commercial Break

MARTIN MALDONADO RETURNS
As Anarchy returns, a preview for CAGED RAGE is shown, highlighting the Heavyweight Title Match between Kaz and CM Punk. After the preview, Josh Daniels says that, as of right now Kaz is still the challenger for the Heavyweight Title, but that could all change, later tonight, when he faces Kurt Angle.

The commentary is interrupted as MARTIN MALDONADO's music plays, and he walks on-stage, bandaged. Daniels reminds the fans that Maldonado was viciously attacked backstage by Cody Rhodes, after Maldonado had attacked Rhodes after his match two weeks ago. Scott Michaels says that Maldonado was just sending a message, and that Cody Rhodes took it too far.

In the ring, Maldonado says that he has had two weeks to heal from his injuries - though his doctors still feel another week off would do him well - and to think about what has happened since has come to the HWL. But, he says, there was one thing that he couldn't get his mind off: Cody Rhodes, and paying him back for putting him out of action last week. Maldonado was quick to accept Cody's challenge at Caged Rage, saying that December 18th would basically be "legalized killing". Maldonado says that nothing matters more to him then putting Rhodes out of action indefinitely. Maldonado says that he has no goals of becoming Heavyweight Champion, X-Division Champion, or anything else. He only goal is to end Cody Rhodes's career. Maldonado says that Rhodes better prepare himself for a future without wrestling, before promising that Rhodes "will never leave that cage!"

Maldonado throws down the microphone, and leaves the ring, as Daniels says that Maldonado looks and sounds determined; and that it might have something to do with his ego being tarnished by the attack. Michaels says Maldonado's ego isn't tarnished at all, because Rhodes attacked him from behind; and that Maldonado is just ready to fight.

Commercial Break

[Non-Title Match]:
Steve Corino & Eddie Edwards defeated The Conglomerate (Matt Morgan & Rob Terry) when E. Edwards defeated M. Morgan by countout in 0:17:07.
Rating: * ½

On paper, this match should have easily gone to Morgan and Terry. They were the bigger, stronger men in the match, and with “The Nature Boy” Ric Flair in their corner, they’d have an arsenal of tricks of their sleeves. But, Corino and Edwards are the Tag Team Champions for a reason: because they won’t give up in the face of adversity. They came out taking the fight to The Conglomerate, stunning them into minimal offense for at the beginning of the match. But, soon, Morgan and Terry’s power started to turn things in their favor. Morgan and Terry have been looking for consistent wins here as of late, and it looked like they were about to take a big step in the right direction, until Morgan went for the Carbon Footprint outside the ring, only to hang himself on the guardrail after Edwards moved out of the way. Edwards connected with a super kick before entering the ring, and the Champions picked up a huge victory as the referee counted Morgan out.

Commercial Break

HAGADORN HAS BIG NEWS
Backstage, DAVID OTUNGA and CHRIS HERO are seen celebrating Otunga's victory over Jeff Hardy earlier in the evening. Their celebration is interrupted as Shane Hagadorn enters the locker room, with a huge smile on his face. Otunga wants to know what Hagadorn is happy about, and Hagadorn wastes no time in telling them. He tells Otunga and Hero that he has finally made up for his mistake a few weeks ago, and that they don't need to thank him. He informs them that Eddie Edwards and Steve Corino have agreed to put the Tag Team Titles on the line at Caged Rage! Hagadorn leaves the locker room, celebrating his surprise, as Hero and Otunga look on with smug smirks on their faces.

Daniels and Michaels agree that tonight has been filled with huge matches being signed for December 18th. Daniels says that Caged Rage is shaping up to be a huge way to end 2011.

Rami Sebei pinned Luke Gallows after a small package in 0:10:26.
Rating: ** ½

Rami Sebei has been quietly making a name for himself since his surprise main event against AJ Styles back in July. He is quickly gaining traction in the X Division, where there are a few unanswered questions about who is fitting enough to challenge Adam Cole for the title at Caged Rage. Rami came out tonight, hoping to impress the fans, and further his claim to be number-one contender. But, he was going to have his hands full as Luke Gallows was introduced to the crowd. It’s been almost a year since Gallows was last seen in the HWL, when he - along with Serena - were having issues with CM Punk. There’s not telling what Punk was thinking when his former bodyguard returned, but he had to notice that Gallows looked like he hadn’t missed a step. He used his size and strength advantage to hit a number of power moves on Sebei, but Sebei’s perseverance prevailed, as he was able to outlast Gallows with his speed, tiring out the bigger man. After ducking a week clothesline attempt, Sebei rolled Gallows up in a small package for the 1-2-3!

After the match, with the crowd going crazy, Sebei rolled out of the ring, and said that he wanted to challenge Adam Cole for the X-Division Title at Caged Rage! Daniels said that, as of right now, there is no one better to challenge the Champion. And, if Cole accepts the challenge, there’s not telling what they would do inside a steel cage! Michaels said that Cole has been foaming at the mouth for a challenge, and now he has something - or someone - to sink his teeth into.

Commercial Break

[Number-One Contenders Match]:
Kaz defeated Kurt Angle by countout in 0:17:38.
Rating: *** ¼

Kurt Angle was determined to get himself back into the Heavyweight Title Match at Caged Rage, but his road went through Kaz tonight in Portland. It was a year ago, at Caged Raged in 2010, that Kaz and Angle stepped into the ring with the title on the line, as part of a Triple Threat Match, that saw Angle walk away victorious. Daniels and Michaels made sure to mention that there was no love lost between these two men. And, they showed it as well. This match was nothing but a fight. And, it showed the HWL fans that there is a different side to Kaz that hasn’t been seen too often, as he traded blow-by-blow with the Olympic Gold Medalist, causing Angle to get off his game early on in the match. Both men would eventually land their finishers on the other, but both times, Kaz and Angle were able to somehow kick out. The end of the match saw Angle and Kaz brawling outside the ring. Angle dropped Kaz with a body slam onto the concrete, before heading up to the turnbuckles, taunting the crowd - saying that he would soon be Heavyweight Champion again. The time wasted allowed Kaz to roll out of the way as Angle came off the turnbuckle with a high-impact move, crashing down to the concrete! Slowly, Kaz rolled into the ring, as the referee counted Angle out.

After the match, Kaz used the ropes to get to his feet as Daniels said that, if he didn’t deserve a title shot after winning the Wicked Games Tournament, that Kaz “earned” his shot tonight. Michaels was quick to say that the match could’ve gone either way; and that the outcome would’ve been a lot different had Angle landed his attempt outside the ring. Just then, AJ STYLES jumps over the barricade, tending to Angle, helping him get back to his feet. As Angle begins to get his bearings back, Styles whips him into the steel ring steps! Styles assaults Angle - as the crowd looks on in shock - as HWL officials rush down to the ring. Daniels and Michaels are speechless, saying that they don’t understand Styles’s motives, but that hopefully they will find out more next week. Anarchy goes of the air as Styles is hauled off by officials.

Card rating: ** ¾

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