November 20, 2011

Attendance: 8,282 (41%)

A video montage is shown of the first round matches of the Wicked Games Tournament are shown as "Face on the Floor" by Chevelle plays in the background. Fireworks explode from the stage, as the camera goes inside the arena, and Josh Daniels and Scott Michaels welcome the at-home audience to Charlotte for the second-annual Wicked Games pay-per-view. Josh and Scott run down the matches that are expected tonight - including the main event, Triple Threat Match, for the Heavyweight Title. They then send it to ringside for the opening match…

[HWL Women's Title Match]:
Velvet Sky pinned Brie Bella after a DDT in 0:11:15.
Rating: * 3/4
(Velvet Sky retained the HWL Women's Title.)

These two Vixens have gone quite a strange path over the past couple months, with both playing a number of mind games in the hopes of getting into each other's heads. This time around, it was Brie - who many didn't think had that side to her - who was doing whatever she could to make Velvet worry about the next
time they stepped into the ring with each other. During the weeks leading this match, the tactics seemed to
be working, as Velvet appeared nervous when Bella's name was brought up, or when the two crossed
paths. However, that was not the case tonight, as Velvet withstood a quick start by Brie to retain the title
after hitting a DDT for the 1-2-3.

Backstage, Alisha Hicks is seen with Brutus Magnus. Magnus says that he agrees with the statements made
by Randy Orton on Anarchy, and that there are a number of people in the the tournament who haven't
held a titlle before. Magnus says that Orton, and the others who haven't held a title in the HWL, don't
know what it's like to have championship gold and then watch it leave around the waist of someone else.
Magnus says that's the biggest difference between him and those who haven't held titles: he's been Tag
Team Champion and lost. He's tasted gold, and wants to taste it again. Magnus says that there's sweeter
taste then that of the Heavyweight Title; and that he intends to hold that gold after winning the tonight.

Also backstage, with Ted Hansen, JEFF HARDY says that, for years, he had been held down, because no
one thought he had what it took to be the top guy. Hardy says that he proved everyone wrong - more than
once - and that he has all the talents needed to be the top guy in the HWL. He says tonight is his night to
shine, and that's exactly what he's going to do. Hardy says that he's ready to be the top guy again, and
that after tonight, he will be the new #1 Contender, and will go on to Caged Rage, where he can put his
body on the line better than anyone else in the HWL.

[Wicked Games Tournament - Quarter Final]:
Randy Orton pinned Brutus Magnus with the RKO in 09:05.
Rating: ***

The night's first match in the Wicked Games tournament pitted the #16 seed against the #8 seed, as
Brutus Magnus looked to continue his upset streak by taking on "The Viper". Monday night, Randy Orton
said that he was one of three men in the tournament that have yet to hold a title in the HWL. Tonight, he
came out and looked like he was ready to back up his words from Anarchy, and change his fortunes.
Orton picked up the victory by hitting an RKO in the center of the ring, getting the 1-2-3, and moving one
step closer to becoming the #1 Contender.

DAVID OTUNGA is seen getting ready for his match, talking to CHRIS HERO, when SHANE HAGADORN enters the locker room. Otunga and Hero stop talking and look at Hagadorn, who nods in their direction. Hagadorn, again, says that he's sorry for costing them the Tag Team Titles, but that he is going to make up for his mistake; and that he will start tonight, by helping Otunga win the tournament. Otunga and Hero look at each other, before Otunga says that he doesn't want Hagadorn getting in the way. He says that last he wants is to have Hagadorn cost him a shot at the Heavyweight Title. Hagadorn turns, saying nothing, and walks out of the room…

Backstage, Alisha Hicks was with MARTIN MALDONADO and KURT ANGLE. Angle stayed in the back, as Maldonado said that the day had finally arrived, and that Cody Rhodes was just moments away from getting his wish. He says that Rhodes has done everything he could to get into the ring with Maldonado, and that tonight, he was finally going to get his chance to back up his words. Maldonado says that no matter how much Rhodes thinks he's prepared for tonight, he has no idea what he's up against. Maldonado says that tonight will be the fight of Rhodes's life, and that Rhodes will have to use his imagination to come up with ways to beat Maldonado; but even then, he wouldn't be enough, and that Rhodes will have to live with sitting at home, watching him win the title that Rhodes thinks is his.

[Wicked Games Tournament - Quarter Final]:
David Otunga defeated Jeff Hardy by countout in 0:07:10.
Rating: *

On Monday night, Shane Hagadorn pleaded forgiveness from The A-List Knockouts, promising to make up
for his costing them the Tag Team Titles. Tonight he got his first chance to back up those words. His
charge, David Otunga, had his hands full at the onset of the match, as Hardy used his speedy to gain the
advantage - even using a chair to hit a spinning leg clothesline! Otunga was able to fight back, using his
power to overtake Hardy. With things in control, Otunga threw Hardy outside the ring - looking to inflict
more damage. Otunga connected with a hard shoulderblock, and Hardy's head appeared to smack on the
concrete outside the ring. Otunga re-entered the ring, as Hardy slowly got to his feet. As Hardy started
to re-enter the ring, Hagadorn made his presence known, hitting a low-blow, as Otunga distracted the
referee. As Hagadorn walked away, looking innocent, the referee counted Hardy out.

Backstage, Ted Hansen is seen with CODY RHODES, who responds to the comments made earlier by
Martin Maldonado. Rhodes says that his wish will indeed come true, when he steps into the ring with
Maldonado later tonight, but that he's not concerned with the threats made my his opponent. Rhodes says
that he doesn't need to use his imagination - or come up with "new" ways - to beat Maldonado, because
the only thing fueling him in this match is that Maldonado cost him the Heavyweight Title. Rhodes says
that he can't looks past that, and he won't, until he makes Maldonado pay for what's he done.

Also, backstage, Alisha Hicks is seen with KAZ, who says that he is very aware of how dangerous a
tournament format can be. He says that everyone in the tournament is hear for a reason, and that anyone
is capable of becoming the new number-one contender. But, he says that he has been fortunate by getting
the first round off, and having more time to rest than anyone else in the tournament. Kaz says that gives
him an edge, that he hopes on using, to earn a shot at the Heavyweight Title.

[Wicked Games Tournament - Quarter Final]:
Cody Rhodes and Martin Maldonado battled to a draw in 0:20:00.
Rating: *** 1/2

For over a month, Cody Rhodes and Martin Maldonado's paths have been destined to cross, and everyone
had been holding their breath that the crossing would happen here tonight - and that's exactly what
everyone in attendance got to see. Rhodes had promised retribution on Maldonado for costing Rhodes his
rematch against AJ Styles for the Heavyweight Title last month, saying that he would do whatever he
needed to make sure Maldonado didn't get closer than he would. Tonight, that promise was put to the test
as both men came out swinging, giving this match everything they had to offer. In the early moments of
the match, Rhodes connected with a superplex that stunned the crowd, but he was only able to get a two
count out of it. He attempted to do the move a second time, but Maldonado blocked the attempt and
started his comeback. This was a back-and-forth affair throughout the entirity, with both men hitting
their finishers a total of FIVE times - but neither one of them being able to pick up the pinfall. The final
seconds of the match saw Maldonado hit the Gringo Killer for the third time, but Rhodes got his shoulder
up just before the three. Moments later, the bell sounded, and the referee called the match a draw - but
neither Maldonado nor Rhodes were willing to cease.

After the match, HWL officials rushed down to the ring, attempting to break up the brawl, only to get
shoved off by Maldonado, who would then continue to attack Rhodes inside the ring. The officials tried
once more, grabbing Maldonado by the arms, and dragging him back to a corner. But, this only allowed
Rhodes to get a good number of shots in after he wiggled free from the grasps of his own officials. The
crowd was going crazy! Finally, after some time, KURT ANGLE made his way down the ramp, and into the
corner of Maldonado. Angle whispered something into his ear, and quickly left the ring, as Maldonado slid
under the bottom rope and followed suit. The officials let go of Rhodes, as he watched Maldonado make
his way up the ramp - the crowd chanting Cody's name all the while.

Backstage, Heavyweight Champion AJ STYLES is seen heading towards his locker room door, when he is
confronted by KURT ANGLE. Angle tells Styles that, if he wants to be considered a true champion, then
he needs to tell The Conglomerate members to "stay out of my way" during the main event. Angle says he
will not have his chance at the Heavyweight Title tainted by outside interference. Angle walks away, with
Styles staring behind him, before Styles enters the locker room, shaking his head.

[Wicked Games Tournament - Semifinal]:
Kaz pinned Randy Orton with the Wave of the Future in 0:12:06.
Rating: *** 1/2

Kaz was the much more rested of the two as the semifinals began, having received a bye in the quarterfinals. Randy Orton, on the other hand, came off a hard-fought match with Brutus Magnus. It appeared, from the onset of the match, that Orton didn't have enough time to rest between matches, or that there was some underlying injuring that was making it hard for him to stay in this match. Kaz made things look a little too easy throughout the match, as he repeatedly tossed Orton outside the ring, and waited until "The Viper" crawled his way back into the ring, getting closer to "10" each time. When Orton did mount offense, it was short-lived, as Kaz was able to counter out of most moves, due to being the fresher man in the tournament. In the end, Kaz connected with the Wave of the Future for the 1-2-3, and will move on into the finals.

Backstage, inside The Conglomerate locker room, AJ STYLES is seen sitting by himself, looking at the
ground, when RIC FLAIR enters the room. Flair says that Styles doesn't "look like 'the man'" that hold the
top belt in the HWL. Styles says that Flair should know better than to question his intensity - especially
when it comes to the Heavyweight Title. But Styles tells Flair that tonight is a huge night for him, and
when he walks out with the title still over his shoulder, he wants to say he did it without help. Styles tells
Flair that he wants "the Nature Boy" to stay backstage; and to make sure that no one else interferes. Styles then grabs the title belt and leaves the locker room, leaving Flair speechless.

[Wicked Games Tournament - Semifinal]:
David Otunga won via default.

Backstage, Ted Hansen is seen with CM PUNK, who says that he has "absolutely loved" watching Kurt Angle and AJ Styles "tear each other apart" in the weeks leading up to tonight. Punk says that he has stayed out of the way, because even though he has been known of saying things to get under people's skin, he knows when to keep his mouth shut, too. Punk says that tonight, it's not about getting the best of each other in a war of words, or pointing out their flaws with a verbal barage, but it's about being the best - when it counts - inside that ring. Punk says that didn't call himself "the Best in the World" to piss people off; he did it because it was true. The people that booed him knew it was true, and tonight, Kurt Angle and AJ Styles will know it's true. Punk walks away as the scene goes back to ringside…

[Wicked Games Tournament - Finals]:
Kaz pinned David Otunga with the Wave of the Future in 0:05:58.
Rating: ** 1/2

The finals of the tournament came down to two men who were fortunate enough to NOT have to do battle in every round. Otunga looked to gain the upper hand over Kaz, who had just competed, after sitting in the back and watching Cody Rhodes and Martin Maldonado eliminate each other from title contention. But, Kaz came out on a roll, still surging from his win over Randy Orton. Kaz had the upper hand throughout the match, and Otunga was able to garner a slight bit of offense, but it wasn't enough to put Kaz away. Otunga started looking to Shane Hagadorn for assistance during the match, but Hagadorn's attention was elsewhere as STEVE CORINO and EDDIE EDWARDS made their apperance on the stage. Hagadorn quickly left ringside, standing in the center of the ramp, pleading for Corino and Edwards to not interfere. But, with his attention taken away from Otunga, "The A-List Superstar" fell victim to the Wave of the Future, and Kaz walked away with the victory.

As Josh Daniels and Scott Michaels spoke about Kaz becoming the new number one contender for the
Heavyweight Title, Shane Hagadorn made his way into the ring, hovering over Otunga and apologizing. Suddenly, Hagadorn go to his feet, and attacked Kaz with a double axehandle to the back; but the move
only infuriated Kaz. Kaz turned around, grabbed Hagadorn by the collar, and threw out over the top rope
- getting a huge roar from the crowd! Kaz sat on the top turnbuckle and watched as Edwards and Corino
left the stage, and Hagadorn rolled Otunga out of the ring.

A preview for the next HWL pay-per-view, Caged Rage, is shown as "Public Enemy No.1" by Megadeath plays in the background. The event will take place, live, from Providence, Rhode Island on Sunday, December 18th.

[Triple Threat Match for Heavyweight Title]:
CM Punk defeated Kurt Angle and AJ Styles when Punk pinned Styles with the G.T.S in 0:24:10.
Rating: *
(CM Punk won the HWL Heavyweight Title.)

These three men have been at each others' throats for the past month, just buying their time before this match took place. The last time these three were in the ring, it was Punk who was at the disadvantage, as
Styles and Angle teamed up in the hopes of keeping Punk out of this match. But tonight, there was no real
advantage - but the disadvantage solely sat on the shoulders of the Heavyweight Champion. Styles did not
need to be a part of the finish to lose the Heavyweight Title, but he had to pin - or make someone submit - in order to keep it.

Early on in this match, it appeared that Angle was going to play the role of peace keeper tonight, as he routinely would interject himself, breaking up submission and pinfall attempts. But, once he got into the
ring, he took to tearing down AJ, hoping to take the champion out of the match as quick as possible. For
the first 15 minutes of the match, neither man was able to get enough offense to stand above the others;
each one falling victim to an attack from behind. That is, until Angle hit Styles with the Angle Slam, but
Styles was able to lift his shoulder up after only a one-count. Distraught, Angle was thrown out of the ring by Punk, who quickly went for a cover, and again, only got a one count. The referee forced Punk to leave the ring, as Angle gathered his bearings and rolled under the bottom rope.

Whatever few moments the champ had to himself, he made sure not to take for granted. AJ and Kurt restarted their brawl in the ring, and the action continued to go back and forth until Angle attempted the Ankle Lock. AJ rolled out of the move, throwing Angle into the ropes, and straight into a boot from Punk! Punk tagged himself into the match, and attacked Styles from behind, and the two of them went toe-to-toe. Styles was able to surprise Punk with a Pele kick, and a near-fall, only to to have Angle smack him in the back, bringing himself into the match.

Angle went on the offensive, and stayed on Punk, using his amateur wrestling background to wear down the self-proclaimed "Best in the World". Angle locked in a rear naked choke, but just before he passed out, Punk was able to drape his foot over the bottom rope, causing the referee to break the hold. Punk wrapped his leg around the rope as Angle tried to pull him to his feet, but again, the referee stepped in - allowing Punk to get back to his feet. But, as soon as he did, Punk raced across the ring, slapped Styles on the arm and exited the ring.

Again, Punk watched from the outside as Angle and Styles went at each other. This time around, Styles got the upper hand, hitting the Styles Clash, but Punk interfered, breaking up the pinfall before retreating outside the ropes. Styles walked over to the ropes, and he and Punk shared words with one another, as Angle slowly got back to his feet across the ring. Punk jumped off the apron as Angle ran in, splashing Styles's chest against the tunrbuckles! Angle stood back, stalking AJ, before hitting a second Angle Slam! But, the momentum of the move put Angle in front of Punk, and as Angle got to his feet, Punk slapped him across the back, tagging himself in. Angle took a swing at Punk, who ducked it and threw Angle over the top rope! Punk turned to Styles, who was getting to his feet, and hit the G.T.S. in the center of the ring! Punk quickly made the cover, locking Styles's legs, as the referee counted 1-2-3!

After the match, Angle re-entered the ring, and attacked Punk from behind, causing the referee to call for the bell. Angle whipped Punk into the ropes, only to have Punk grab them, and slide out of the ring. Punk grabbed the Heavyweight Title from the timekeeper and made his way through the Charlotte crowd as Wicked Games went off the air.

Rating: *** 1/4

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