20 YRS AGO – WWE Raw Report (5-10-2004): Christian vs. Jericho in a cage, Randy Orton vs. Edge for IC Title, Triple H vs. Shelton, plus Ric Flair, Victoria, Bischoff, more

By Wade Keller, PWTorch editor

Chris Jericho (artist Travis Beaven © PWTorch)


The following report originally published 20 years ago this week here at PWTorch.com…

MAY 10, 2004

-Clips aired of last week’s Chris Benoit vs. Shawn Michaels match with Triple H interfering.

-After the opening montage, Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler introduced the show and previewed the loaded line-up of Eugene vs. Rob Conway, Christian vs. Chris Jericho in a cage, and Edge vs. Randy Orton for the IC Title. Then introductions took place for another strong match, Triple H vs. Shelton Benjamin, although it was hardly a match.


Competitive, back-and-forth action including a near fall by Benjamin. Benjamin missed the Stinger splash at 2:00. Hunter then clotheslined him over the top rope. Michaels then ran out and attacked Hunter.

WINNER: No contest at 2:15.

STAR RATING: 1/2* — Good start to another potentially good match.

Several referees entered the ring and Hunter fled the scene into the crowd. Michaels called for Hunter to return to the ring. Eric Bischoff walked out and said that would not happen. He said he knew all hell would break out because Michaels was upset he didn’t win the title last night. He said enough is enough and he would not lose control of his own show. He said he let Mr. McMahon’s office know that the first person to get out of line tonight would be made an example of, “and Shawn Michaels, it looks like you are that person.” He called out security, who were to escort Michaels out of the arena because “as of this moment, you are suspended.” Now that’s hardly fair. Why not suspend Hunter for his interference last week? Bischoff is hardly an objective, fair G.M., is he? Michaels leaped over the ring barrier and went after Hunter again. They brawled as security tried to separate them.

[Commercial Break]

-A recap aired of the Orton-Edge feud.

-Backstage Ric Flair was back and gave Hunter a pep talk, saying Michaels got what he deserved for sticking his nose in their business. Who interfered in who’s match last week? Flair then told Orton he was not only going to defeat Edge, he was going to embarrass him. He then told Batista to beat up that (bleep) Tajiri. Bischoff then walked in and told Hunter next week he’d have a chance at the World Hvt. Championship. Orton, Batista, and Flair applauded.

[Commercial Break]

-Ross complained to Lawler about Triple H getting a World Title shot next week. Lawler told Ross to cool down because Hunter deserved it. They’ve done a nice job setting up Hunter as having unfairly rewarded after interfering in last week’s match. They’ve also nicely set up Michaels in a sympathetic position. Think about Michaels’s job this week. He had to deal with flying half way across the country, deal with airports and hotels and rental cars and wrestling fans, and then had just two minutes of airtime (assuming he doesn’t return). He also contributed backstage, as he and Hunter remain actively involved in creating, tweaking, and producing their segments.


Ross continued to defend Michaels and talk about how outrageous Bischoff’s decision was. He did a great job speaking for the fans and emotionally accentuating the storyline points of the show so far. Batista dominated from the start with a brief hope spot by Tajiri at 2:30. When Lawler suggested Michaels next-best-career would be as a male dancer, Ross called that a “stereotype.” At 3:30 Tajiri got in another hope spot with some flying elbows off the ropes, but Batista soon swatted him down. When he lifted him for a slam, Tajiri swung around and turned it into a DDT for a near fall. Nice spot. Batista blocked a Tajiri roundhouse kick, then he planted him with a spinebuster for the win. Batista continued to attack Tajiri after the match, including a vicious choke as the bell rang. Finally five officials (including Fit Finlay) yanked him off of Tajiri. Batista laughed as Tajiri was tended to in the ring.

WINNER: Batista at 4:34.

STAR RATING: * — It’s good for Batista to win with a spinebuster and not just his usual sitdown powerbomb finisher so that future near falls before he uses his finisher mean something. They’re really utilizing Tajiri well. Even though he’s losing, his talents are being taken advantage as a good bumper for the bigger Raw main eventers.

[Commercial Break]

-Stacy walked out to plug the divas “South of the Border” DVD with her in it. She talked about how summer means bikini season. Clips aired of the WWE divas posing in their bikinis in a beach and breathing seductively. Of course, this was going to turn into an angle, and Molly Holly and Gail Kim walked out. Kim complained about Stacy getting all the camera time even though she made the women’s champ tapout last week. Molly asked her if she was bragging about being hotter than Gail or her. Gail and Molly attacked her. Victoria and Nidia made the save.

[Commercial Break]

-They showed the cage hanging from the rafters. Ross said someone might get hurt later in that match.

-Todd Grisham interviewed Chris Jericho who promo’d his match against Christian. He didn’t use his cartoon wrestling voice and did a serious promo, which suited the circumstances. Ross acknowledged how focused Jericho seemed. Lawler began complimenting Orton as being like an Adonis statue. I was surprised Ross didn’t ask Lawler if he wanted to sleep with him.

3 — RANDY ORTON vs. EDGE — Intercontinental Title match

Well, that didn’t take long because as Lawler continued to praise Orton’s physique, Ross said he thought Lawler “sounded infatuated” with Orton. Pretty methodical opening few minutes with Edge on offense most of the time. At 5:00 Edge threw Orton into the ringside stairs. That prompted Flair to come to ringside as they cut to a break.

[Commercial Break]

They showed that during the break, when Edge threw Orton back into the ring, Flair grabbed Edge from behind and threw him into the stairs. Orton then took control of the match. Orton applied an armbar chinlock combo, which is a lot more interesting to watch than just a simple headlock, chinlock, or armbar, which as effective as they may be in a real fight, just don’t belong in pro wrestling matches in this country anymore because they’re too associated with boring house show restholds with this generation of fans. Edge armdragged out of it, but Orton went right back into it which was a nice exchange. That brief spot was needed because they stayed with the hold for a long time (probably four minutes), and it got a bit long even with that brief break.

Edge escaped and small packaged Orton for a two count. Orton then hit a sudden neckbreaker. Orton bodyblocked Edge, but Edge rolled through for a two count. Orton followed up with an uppercut. Edge fired back with an elbow to the chin. They went back and forth several times with Edge getting control and backdropping Orton. Edge then back suplexed Orton for a near fall. Flair remained at ringside. Edge speared Orton from behind as Orton stood on the outside ring apron.

Orton flew onto the ringside barrier. Back in the ring at 13:00 Edge hit a top rope dropkick and scored a near fall. Orton hit Edge with an elbow and then set up a neckbreaker. Edge powered out of it and elbowed Orton on the back, then dropped Orton to the mat and scored another near fall. Orton went for a head scissors on Edge, but Edge turned it into a mid-air powerbomb for another near fall in the spot of the match. Flair jumped onto the ring apron, distracting Edge. Orton went for an RKO from behind, but Edge sidestepped it and shoved Orton toward Flair, but Orton sidestepped Edge, who then knocked Flair to the floor in an imperfect spear spot. Orton then schoolboyed Edge from behind for the win.

WINNER: Orton at 15:45.

STAR RATING: ***1/4 — Good match. That “New Style” spot mid-match lasted a bit longer than ideal, but overall a really good match with very good intensity from two wrestlers who often less than stellar at expressing believable intensity throughout their matches. This seemed like these two were fighting, not just running through preordained spots.

[Commercial Break]

-Clips aired of Eugene’s workout session last week.

-Then backstage Bischoff suggested to William Regal that if Eugene were to lose, he’d probably quit. He said if Eugene quit, he still would have fulfilled his obligation to his sister yet Eugene would be gone forever. He said if that happened, Regal could have a spot on the roster again. Regal smiled and said he’d make sure the best man won. Bischoff then wished Eugene luck.

-Ross lamented the planned sabotaging of Eugene’s first match. I think Ross should have questioned the wisdom of Bischoff plotting such a sabotaging of his sister’s son right in front of a camera on live TV. Ross should have at least slyly said, “I hope Bischoff’s sister doesn’t have cable or doesn’t watch Raw!” Just once I want to see WWE write into a show something backfiring on someone who spoke of an underhanded plot in front of a camera.


WINNER: Kim via tapout on Victoria at 2:05.

STAR RATING: 1/2* — Short, but okay action.

-Smackdown Rebound aired with clips of the Eddie Guerrero heart attack angle.

[Commercial Break]

-Grisham interviewed Christian about his cage match. Tomko and Trish Stratus were near him. Christian said he will win and move on to bigger and better things. He said next week he will be given the chance to become the World Hvt. Champion. Lawler and Ross didn’t understand Christian’s comment. They wondered how many title matches they’d have next week. Trish then walked up to Lita and said they’ve been through so much together, she can see that she’s not herself. Trish then screamed, “Oh my god it’s Kane!” Lita screamed and turned around. No one was there. Trish laughed. Lita leaped onto Trish and tackled her. Christian and Matt Hardy pulled them apart. Christian yelled at Hardy to keep her under control.

-Clips aired of the Kane-Lita storyline.

-Hardy and Lita walked to the ring for Hardy’s match against Val Venis. Kane then showed up on the big screen and said he doesn’t have an opponent. He then rammed Val into a steel garage door backstage. He then said he had a personal message for Lita. “I told you what I wanted,” he said between heavy breaths. “I want an answer and you’ve got one week to give me an answer. And it better be the right one.” Lita began crying as Hardy tried to console her and also find out what Kane asked her.

[Commercial Break]

5 — ROB CONWAY (w/Sylvain Grenier) vs. EUGENE

Eugene waved to the fans as soon as he entered the ring. Eugene outwrestled Conway in the opening minute. The crowd chanted and clapped for him. As Eugene looked to Regal and celebrated, Conway took control. Eugene made a comeback a minute later with punches and kicks and an atomic drop. He followed with an atomic drop and airplane spin (you knew that’d be part of his move-set). Eugene then hit a top rope sledgehammer for a nearfall. He followed with Hogan-style legdrop for another two count. Regal tripped Eugene as he bounced off the ropes. When Eugene turned around, Regal told him he tripped over the ring apron. Conway went up to Eugene from behind, but Eugene rolled him up instead for a three count. Conway hugged a dejected Regal at ringside. Lawler said Regal is now stuck with Eugene.

WINNER: Eugene at 3:10.

STAR RATING: * — Well executed and the crowd was into Eugene.

[Commercial Break]

-A really nice video feature aired on Chris Benoit. It featured old school photos of Benoit through his WCW days and early WWF matches and even a shot of him in Stu Hart’s Dungeon where he trained. Benoit narrated, talking about his desire to be a champion since early in his career and how he has proved he can win the big one.

-Bischoff stepped out onto the stage and said he had some major announcements to make regarding the World Title and next week’s show. First, Johnny Nitro announced Trish vs. Lita. Ross called him a dork. Then Bischoff revealed that next week would feature a battle royal with the winner moving on to face Benoit in the main event of Badd Blood in June. Bischoff then said it was time for the main event. The cage began to lower. Ross talked about the risk of injury in a cage match.

[Commercial Break]

-Ross and Lawler previewed next week’s Raw including Lita vs. Trish and the 20 man battle royal. They showed a collage of the participants.

-Bischoff joined Ross and Lawler at the announce table. He said that Michaels will remain suspended next week and not participate in the 20 man battle royal next week.

6 — CHRISTIAN vs. CHRIS JERICHO (w/Trish, Tomko)

Jericho went on early offense including a roll-up into a Walls of Jericho attempt. Christian fended off Jericho, who fired back with chops. Jericho quickly tried to climb the cage, not exactly a move of someone trying to get revenge on Christian unless he was going up in order to dive off onto Christian, but it was too early in the match for that to make any sense. Christian yanked Jericho to the mat. A minute later Christian climbed the cage. Jericho met him on the top rope and knocked him off balance, so Christian straddled the top rope. As Jericho climbed to the top of the cage, Tomko banged a chair against the top of the cage, slowing down Jericho. Jericho then dove off the top of the cage with a bodyblock onto Christian. Jericho sold an ankle injury.

The cage door was opened and Jericho crawled toward the exit. Tomko kicked Jericho in the head. The ringside ref scolded him and made him return to the back. As Jericho began to crawl out of the cage again, Ross announced, “Jericho is going to win it,” which of course assured that Christian would grab his leg. Christian did. Jericho ran at Christian in the ring, but Christian backdropped him into the side of the cage. They showed a replay of Jericho’s leap off the top of the cage. Jericho came back by throwing Christian head-first into the side of the cage twice in a row. Christian came up bleeding. Jericho then rammed Christian into the cage, then bulldogged him. Christian surprised Jericho with his finisher, the Unprettier. Both men were down. Christian made the cover for a near fall.

A very bloody Christian began climbing the cage. Jericho double arm suplexed Christian off the top rope to the floor, drawing a “holy sh–” chant from the crowd. Trish then entered the cage with a chair. Jericho put her in the Walls. Trish tapped out frantically. Christian didn’t save Trish, opting instead to try to win by climbing over the top of the cage on Jericho’s blind side. Jericho let go of Trish and leaped to the top rope and grabbed Christian. He then slammed Christian to the mat off the top rope. He went for the Walls again and succeeded. Christian screamed in agony, but also crawled to the floor and touched the floor with his hands. Ross said Christian’s feet had to touch. Jericho dragged Christian back into the ring. Christian tapped.

WINNER: Jericho via tapout at 11:43.

STAR RATING: ***1/2 — A bit short to be a classic, but a very good cage match within the timeframe with some good big spots, some blood for drama, and a nice finishing sequence.

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