February 21, 2011

Attendance: 13,615 (64%)

Highlights of last week's episode are shown, ending with Kurt Angle hitting the Angle Slam on Abyss, before rolling him back into the ring to eventually lose to Randy Orton. “Headstrong” plays through the arena as fireworks shoot from the stage, and the camera pans the crowd, who is cheering. Josh Daniels and Scott Michaels welcome everyone to Greensboro, just six days away from BEST OF THE BEST. It is announced that Peter Bradshaw is in the building, and that, tonight, the final entry order for the #1 Contender's Match, on Sunday night, will be complete. Also, tonight, Cody Rhodes will take on Kyle O'Reilly…

Kurt Angle comes out to the ring, carrying the Heavyweight Title over his shoulder. Limping, he enters the ring, and waits for the cheering to subside before grabbing a microphone. Angle says that he's still feeling the effects of the Black Hole Slam two weeks ago, but says that he showed last week, that it will take more then that to stop him from showing up at Best of the Best on Sunday night. Angle says that he has been through his share of pain and broken bones; he says that he won a Gold Medal, in 1996, with a broken neck; and, that for the past two months, he has been putting his body on the line while defending the Heavyweight Title, in cage matches and all-out brawls. Angle says that he has proven, time and time again, that he will never back down from a fight, and wonders if Abyss would be able to say the same thing… The arena lights go out, and when they return, Abyss is standing behind Angle, and a pile of thumbtacks lays in the center of the ring. As Angle turns around, Abyss connects with a kick to the midsection, before choke-slamming Angle into the pile of thumbtacks! Abyss stands over Angle as the crowd boos, and “Anarchy” goes to commercials…

Commercial Break

(1) Rob Terry vs. David Hart Smith

Just days before these two teams step into the ring for the Tag Team Titles, the two big men from each team stepped into the ring, to see who could get the advantage heading into Sunday night. This was a quick match that saw both Skip Sheffield and Tyson Kidd make their way to the ring, as well as interference from Natalya. D.H. Smith picked up the victory after intercepting Sheffield's weapon toss, and hitting “Big Rob” over the head with a steel chair. After the match, Smith, Kidd and Natalya left the ring as Sheffield tried to plead his case while Terry looked at him, trying to shake the cobwebs. JD and SM wonder if the episode will put a damper on their chances of working together this Sunday night…

David Hart Smith pinned Rob Terry after hitting him with a steel chair in 0:07:31.
Rating: **
[Tyson Kidd interfered against Rob Terry.]
[Skip Sheffield interfered against David Hart Smith.]

Commercial Break

Backstage, Velvet Sky is seen entering the arena, with the Women's Title around her waist, when she is blindsided by Michelle McCool! McCool takes Velvet down to the concrete and begins landing lefts and rights, before ripping the belt from around her waist. McCool stands, and waits for Velvet to get to her feet, before hitting her in the head with the belt. McCool tells Velvet that she doesn't deserve to be champion, because Velvet hasn't done anything to deserve it. McCool gets ready to hit Velvet with the belt again, but is stopped by Angelina Love. Love pushes McCool away from Sky; and McCool drops the belt before walking away, fuming. Love tends to Sky as the camera goes back to the ring…

(2) Alex Shelley vs. Yoshi Tatsu

Yoshi Tatsu missed out on his chance to be in the 15-man battle royal this Sunday night, but he made sure not to miss the action tonight, against Alex Shelley – the 7th entrant. Tatsu brought his new-found mean streak with him, and started off very strong, picking up a few near falls, and nearly making Shelley tap out to an armbar. In the end, Shelley connected with the Slice Bread #2 to pick up the victory, and give himself some momentum heading into Sunday night. After the match, Tatsu slapped the canvas in anger, before getting into the referee's face and complaining that he heard Shelley tap out earlier in the match. The referee demanded that Tatsu get out of the ring, but Yoshi pushed him to the mat. KAZ ran down from the back, and stepped in front of this tag partner, trying to calm him down. After a few seconds, Kaz escorted Yoshi to the back, as the crowd showered him with boos.

Alex Shelley pinned Yoshi Tatsu with the Sliced Bread #2 in 0:13:44.
Rating: *** 1/2

Commercial Break

Peter Bradshaw comes to the ring as “Anarchy” returns. He says that he has been very happy by the effort and enthusiasm displayed by the HWL roster, and their quest to challenge for the Heavyweight Title at Wrestleocalypse. He acknowledges that not everyone has been given the perfect position to enter the match, this Sunday night, but says that they will get their chances in the future. Bradshaw says that even though only three men will fight for the coveted 15th entry this Sunday night, all other 14 men have a chance to do the unthinkable. Before Bradshaw can continue, ADAM COLE comes out to the ring with a microphone of his own. Cole says that he thinks it's great that Bradshaw is coming out and praising the effort from the ten men who have already had their battle royals; but says that Bradshaw knows, deep down, that he doesn't mean a single word of it. Cole says that the others might feel better knowing that the Owner had watched their matches, but that he wasn't going to be happy with just a simple pat on the back. Cole says that, last week, he and Kyle O'Reilly warned the HWL that they were going to be a force in the near future. He says that “the future” will be taking place this Sunday, when he walks out of Richmond, Virginia, not only as Jeythe X-Division Champion, but also as the number one contender for the Heavyweight Title. Cole drops the microphone and leaves the ring as Bradshaw stands in the ring, shaking his head.

Commercial Break

(3) Five-Man Battle Royal

Peter Bradshaw stayed at ringside, after his confrontation with Adam Cole, and said that he was looking forward to what would happen in the final qualifier for this Sunday night. There were plenty of surprises in this match, as CM PUNK, KAVAL, and STEVE CORINO all made their returns to the HWL tonight. Another surprise was the addition of current PCW star, KOFI KINGSTON. Punk made quick work of Kingston, at the beginning of the match, and fought to keep himself in the match, while Jey Uso used the help of Tamina to eliminate Corino. In the end, Uso and Punk were the final two standing, and Punk connected with the G.T.S. Before easily throwing Uso over the top rope. After the match, Punk pointed at Bradshaw and said that he was finally going to get the recognition he didn't get before…

CM Punk won a 5-man battle royal:
x Punk threw out Kofi after a double-reverse suplex in 0:00:17.
x S. Corino threw out Kaval in 0:05:05.
x Jey threw out S. Corino in 0:10:47.
x Punk threw out Jey in 0:15:33.
Rating: *** ¼
[Tamina interfered against Steve Corino.]

Commercial Break

Backstage, KURT ANGLE is seen making his way to the viewing lounge, when he is approached by RANDY ORTON. Orton says that, no matter what happens tonight, whether he wins the last entry or not, he will be coming after the Heavyweight Title… whether Angle is champion or not. Angle smiles and says that Orton has other things to worry about before then, but that he hopes to see Orton give it his all tonight, or else it'll be worthless…

(4) Cody Rhodes vs. Kyle O'Reilly

Last week, Rhodes watched – and took advantage of – the attack on D'Angelo Dinero by Adam Cole, putting “The Pope” out of action this week. Tonight, Rhodes stepped into the ring with Cole's partner, and wanted to send a message, that he wouldn't stand for the cheap tactics they were using to get to the top of the HWL. O'Reilly looked to have had the match won on three different occasions, but Rhodes's tenacity helped him kick out of three separate brain busters! Rhodes fought his way back, and was able to hit the Cross Rhodes, to pick up the victory. After the match, MATT MORGAN appeared from the crowd and connected with the Carbon Footprint on Rhodes! Morgan quickly left the ring, to a chorus of boos, as the referee tended to Rhodes in the ring.

Cody Rhodes pinned Kyle O'Reilly with the Cross Rhodes in 0:14:39.
Rating: 1/4

Commercial Break

(5) Randy Orton vs. Adam Cole vs. CM Punk (Match for #15 Entry Spot)

The anticipation in the arena was at it's fullest level as Peter Bradshaw came back down to the broadcast table for the main event. Adam Cole had made his intentions know earlier in the evening; Randy Orton had a confrontation with the Heavyweight Champion, Kurt Angle; and CM Punk made a triumphant return to the HWL, winning the final battle royal, to earn the vacant spot in tonight's Triple Threat Match. With the final entry spot on the line, all three men stopped at nothing to get what they wanted. After a strong back-and-forth battle, Orton connected with the RKO to eliminate Cole, leaving “The Viper” and Punk to battle it out for spots 14 and 15. The match quickly went outside the ring, where both superstars used everything they could to get the advantage, nearly getting themselves counted out in the process. Back in the ring, Punk locked in the Anaconda Vice, but Orton was able to grab the ropes before tapping out. Staggered and lost on his feet, Orton became a victim of a vicious Punk clothesline, that allowed Punk to pick up the surprising victory. After the match, Punk fell to his knees in celebration of the victory. JD and SM said that Punk just bettered his chances of earning a shot at the Heavyweight Title, but that it wouldn't be known until Sunday night, at Best of the Best…

CM Punk defeated Adam Cole and Randy Orton:
x R. Orton beat A. Cole via the RKO in 0:17:35.
x Punk beat R. Orton via a short lariat in 0:20:10.
Rating: *** ¾

Card rating: *** 3/4

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