Cedric Alexander def. Mike Kanellis
Still searching for an elusive victory that has been within reach, Mike Kanellis hoped to pick up tremendous momentum by defeating former WWE Cruiserweight Champion Cedric Alexander. However, The Soul of WWE 205 Live is determined to return to The Grandest Stage of Them All and once again claim the title, and his battle against Kanellis would serve as the perfect showcase for the right to enter the tournament.
As Maria Kanellis offered encouragement for her husband from ringside, Alexander displayed his legendary resilience and stamina by avoiding opponent’s strikes and executing a series of moves that ended with a Neutralizer. In control, Alexander prepared for a high-risk maneuver, but Kanellis moved, forcing the The Soul of WWE 205 Live to land awkwardly on his knee. Seeing the opportunity to strike, Kanellis targeted Alexander’s knee to maximize damage – a wise strategy that would come into play moments later when Alexander couldn’t execute the Lumbar Check.
Alexander scored several near-falls before the battle spilled to the outside with Kanellis delivering a cringe-worthy spinebuster on the entrance ramp. Kanellis attempted to win by count-out, but Alexander barely made the official’s 10-count, only frustrating Kanellis further. Refusing to tap out to a grueling Boston Crab, Alexander struck back with a huge dive to the outside that flattened his opponent. As Alexander prepared to re-enter the ring after Kanellis, Maria provided a distraction that allowed her husband to hit a superkick and a high-impact twisting DDT to secure the pinfall.
Despite Kanellis thinking he won the match, the official did not call for the bell, as Alexander narrowly got his shoulder up just in time. Maria and Mike Kanellis argued with the official, but the match continued. No doubt disoriented, Kanellis attempted to strike, but he was countered, and Alexander executed the Lumbar Check to secure a hard-fought victory.