Clash in the City of Angels

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March 16, 2010

LOS ANGELES -- Rookies and Pros continued to clash during week four of competition on WWE NXT. Several Rookie standouts continued their upward climb, impressing the WWE Universe with their in-ring abilities, while some fell once again, possibly diminishing their chances at becoming the next Raw Superstar.

Wade Barrett def. Skip Sheffield (PHOTOS | WATCH)
Rookie Skip Sheffield looked for his first WWE NXT victory, but without the expert guidance of his ring veteran Pro, William Regal, he came up short against an increasingly dominant Rookie, Wade Barrett. The Cornfed Meathead tried to talk strategy with The British Brawler before his match, but their meeting was filled with bickering -- something that arguably weighs on the performance of Sheffield, whose record fell to 0-2. Will Sheffield charm his standoffish Pro -- and the WWE Universe -- before it's too late?

On the other hand, Barrett has found his perfect mentor in World Heavyweight Champion Chris Jericho. Their abrasive, cocky personalities click, and Jericho seems to have the utmost confidence in the brawling abilities of his brash, money-hungry Rookie. Under the World Heavyweight Champion's supervision, Barrett has increased his record to 2-1, and shows no signs of slowing down. Who will step in the ring next with Barrett? Will Jericho's leadership send the Rookie down the path of Superstardom?

Heath Slater def. Michael Tarver (PHOTOS | WATCH)
The one-man rock band continued his hot streak on WWE NXT. With his Pro, Christian, watching from the locker room area alongside Michael Tarver's Pro, Carlito, Rookie Heath Slater defeated Tarver. But after the match, a frustrated and angry Tarver leveled Slater, sending a strong message to him and the WWE Universe -- despite a 0-2 record, Tarver isn't backing down. Slater's confidence had been the rise and his impressive record jumped to 3-0. But after this attack, will Slater continue to rock the WWE Universe? How will Christian, who seems to be his perfect teacher, guide him on his quest to become a Superstar? And will Tarver finally find his groove and earn a victory under the watch of the devious Carlito?

The Great Khali def. Daniel Bryan (PHOTOS | WATCH)
While WWE Pro The Miz was not on WWE NXT, he took the opportunity to arrange a special match for his mentee. Rookie Daniel Bryan was put to an immense test, this time by his largest opponent yet, The Great Khali. The Miz should be pleased to know The Punjabi Giant defeated the Rookie, who is now 0-4. However, Bryan showed an impressive effort against his huge opponent, even bringing him to his knees. Then, The Miz's fellow Unified Tag Team Champion, Big Show, appeared and chokeslammed Bryan. Will the valiant Bryan be able to rebound from another loss on WWE NXT?

CM Punk & Darren Young def. Matt Hardy & Justin Gabriel (PHOTOS | WATCH)
While CM Punk hasn't completely convinced his Rookie, Darren Young, to drop his South Beach party boy habits and convert to the Straight Edge lifestyle, he has guided him to victory more than once. On WWE NXT this week, Young earned a tag team victory when he pinned Pro Matt Hardy after Punk hit him with the Go To Sleep when the official wasn't watching. With the Straight Edge Superstar on his side, Young has been unstoppable, and has increased his record to 2-1. But will Young change his life and join the Straight Edge Society? That may not happen this week, as after Young's win, he was attacked by SES member Luke Gallows, who hit the Gallows Pole on Young, as well as Hardy and his Rookie, Justin Gabriel, as a sign of solidarity as Punk and Serena smugly looked on. As for Gabriel, his once-perfect record dropped to 2-1.

Also, WWE NXT host Matt Striker announced that in two weeks, the WWE Pros will evaluate the NXT Rookies. Which Superstar hopefuls will make the grade?

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