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Thread: Being The Booker

  1. #61
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    Re: Being The Booker

    As someone from WF this has been one of the best BTB I have ever read if not the best. The way you slowly have built everything and link everything together is amazing.

    One example is the change in Cena's theme music. The hate me now theme is just too perfect for a heel Cena and the build up to his heel turn in this thread has been amazing. So slowly done and even when it happened it was still shocking because of when you pulled the trigger even though we kind of knew it was coming.

    The way you have built this phoney Cena is great and Ric Flair as his first feud post-mania fits perfectly with Cena being so fake towards Ric Flair. Flair calling out Cena for being fake was great whilst Cena trying to act like him and Flair are the same still showing the delusion that goes on in Cena's mind. Ric Flair taking down Cena after faking sadness was gold. Curious to see what part Christian plays in the Backlash match.

    Ranjin Singh being GM of Raw is really interesting as a basically the most cowardly and worse GM ever. Love watching the heels run over him. Feel like this GM run will run it's course soon however curious to see if JBL comes back or someone else takes over.

    Punk picking up the win over Regal makes sense. CM Punk being a manipulative bastard is always going to be fun.

    Good to see Gail Kim picking up the quick win. Beth vs Kim should be a fun match at Backlash though maybe something happens in the mean time.

    Three guesses for who was behind the Umaga attack. Did think Umaga was going to go to Smackdown in the draft and be the one to end up dethroning Edge. Seems like he will be feuding with Christian for a while. Good to see Shelton also gain the upper hand in his feud with Mark Henry.

    AMW to Raw I like as mentioned they have never been on Raw and have really done all they could as a team over on Smackdown. Nice promo to introduce them to the Raw roster.

    Miz carries on being a highlight of this thread whilst keeping Kennedy's name in the forefront of people's mind.

    Decent match with Rey picking up the win. Curious to see what Kid Kash ends up doing on Raw.

    DX Reunion is the perfect way to end the show and I am looking forward to this match.

    Backlash is looking an amazing card awesome show as always Wolf Beast

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    Re: Being The Booker

    Thoughts on Raw

    The Cena/Flair opening was brilliant in continuing to erase the image of the old Cena. I applaud Cena calling out Flair for doing anything to get to the top. But as Naitch points out he was always a bastard whilst Cena was a con man trying to put his ideals on the fans.

    Christian was the white knight for Flair again but with Cena pulling Ranjin Singh's strings he might have bitten off more than he can chew. I like that you've put Umaga in as a buffer to keep Christian and Cena apart. I think down the line that is where the money match is with Brent Albright waiting to strike once Cena is dethroned, which I think Christian will end up doing. If Flair doesn't end up on the scrapheap I think it would be a waste of Cena's turn and progress to have Flair go over, no matter how great that would be for nostalgic purposes.

    The debut of AMW on Raw is definitely interesting and part of me hopes they are the next challenge to The Master Craftsmen, despite who is next in line for the title shot. I find it very interesting that The Angels Of Anarchy are pissed off with Shawn Michaels jumping the gun to a title shot, maybe they will play their part at Backlash.

    The women have a very intriguing match ahead of them with the respect being shown between Phoenix and Kim. It's definitely a 'wrestling' match as opposed to some of the 'looking pretty counts first' encounters we saw in the period after this era.

    So The Miz is intent on keeping Kennedy relevant. I'm surprised that nobody came out or shut Miz's mic off during this segment. I think his big mouth is definitely going to get him into trouble and maybe after a few defences against the 'new breed' of superstars he will be dethroned by a surprise debutant. Not sure who but I definitely see it going that way.

    CM Punk is in my opinion not the man behind the attack on Gregory Helms. I'm not sure who you have lined up for this but it would be really funny if it ended up being Matt Hardy. Punk versus Hardy for the IC title definitely excites me and I think we may be heading for The Summer Of Punk as the best midcarder on the red side of the WWE.

    Mysterio vs Kash just makes me think of ECW which is cool. I'm keen to see what happens with Mysterio from here on out and whether he gets pushed into the main event scene or is stuck in the midcard scene. His popularity is sky high as always but I'm not sure he really should be around the main event scene. I felt that way about him in real life too.

    The DX reunion was an awesome way to conclude the show and it rightly went on last. I figured Trips would be the man despite the animosity between the two over the last few years as he mentioned Scott and Kevin but not The Game. Trips pulling out the equaliser in the sledgehammer was great and DX really wounded The Master Craftsmen, not something we have seen done too much lately. The tag match intrigues me for sure but DX as champs, I'm not too sure that is the best way forward for the division. Unless it is a temporary reign of course, that I could dig.

    Overall a very interesting show with some very big moments with Cena/Flair at the start of the show and DX at the end. I'll try my best to keep up with this. Backlash is shaping up to be a brilliant show.





  3. #63
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    Re: Being The Booker

    A master-class promo battle to start things off here between Naitch and Cena. Flair ripping Cena to shreds about him being a con man was something else as was him instilling the fact that he's never been fraudulent about anything. It's classic Ric for him to fool everybody and get worked up like that before going on the offensive, and Cena's attack after getting the upper hand was just brutal. Like the idea of Christian staying in the mix here. I wonder, and I know he's facing Umaga at Backlash, but I wonder if he finds a way to get involved in the title match, getting revenge on Cena and costing him the title (There are parallels here to another thread on another site in a similar feud involving Naitch and title #17, so that's why I'm thinking this could be a possibility).

    Unsurprising result for Punk to get what is a pretty big win for him over Regal. The seedy bastard that Punk is, getting Regal diverted away before attacking him. That suits him prettyp perfectly. I like the way that you've built up this Punk-Hardy feud and I imagine that, when they do come to blows, Punk-Helms is going to be a hoot. Great mid-card stuff here.

    Hmmmm... I imagine this won't wind up being a handicap match so I wonder who will be HBK's partner?

    Quick win for Gail over lowly Layla, and do like the idea of her against Beth. That's about all I can say here for now but I imagine that things will pick up a notch as we venture towards Backlash. So far, so good...

    Jesus, wow. A melee here with no real official match starting at all. The simple thing to do here I reckon would be a tag match on a later Raw (maybe next week or the week after?) but holy cow you made both Shelton and Umaga look great here. Christian's gotta keep his head in the game and realize he's still got Mags to deal with and I suspect that will be the big storyline going into Backlash for him and that match.

    Fun tag match, good heeling from Rhodes and Doane to eventually lead to the W. You're doing a good job in building them up as a tag team... and oh wow the division gets bolstered with AMW! Awesome. Good bits from them and did get a kick out of Storm miming himself pissing. This is a very nice addition to the roster on a tag front and a women's division front.

    Okay, so I like the idea that Miz cut a 'worked shoot' here and God, when used right, Miz is great and pretty hilarious at that. He's SO delusional. Colin Delaney... the original James Ellsworth. Unsurprisingly Miz goes over quickly here. Liked JR harking for the old days of the Hardcore Title while instilling the idea that Miz isn't credible enough. I imagine at some point this invitational will lead to former Hardcore Champs stepping up which should provide for some fun moments.

    Kid Kash?? Yes, I can work with this. A great match between him and Mysterio and while he didn't get the win you certainly made him look great by nearly (and I mean nearly) going 10 minutes with Rey REy and the part with putting him over at the end makes me think that he's fine even with the L.

    Awesome interview with Punk. I don't buy for a second that he wasn't the perpetrator but damn if he doesn't make a convincing enough case. The match against Hardy at Backlash is going to be great and you did a really good job, with the segment earlier and this segment now, in hyping me up for the match. That's the duty, right?

    HELLO. I had a sinking, sinking feeling that after Michaels didn't mention HHH (He only talked about Kev, Scott and Marty, but conspicuously left out Hunter) that maaaaaaaybe he was going to show up. Sure enough, there he is! Awesome way to end the show and DX vs The Master Craftsmen should just be damn awesome.

    Great show, per usual, Wolfy. Backlash is looking great as is the overall health of the Raw brand. Excited for what Smackdown has to bring to the table.

    WWE 2015: Generation NXT | Now Playing in Be The Booker | #WC4Horsemen




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    Re: Being The Booker

    MATCH OFFICIAL FOR BACKLASH

    At the stunning conclusion of Monday Night Raw, Triple H made an unlikely save for Shawn Michaels with The Showstopper facing a 3 on 1 beat down. After years of feuding, it appeared The Game and HBK had put their differences aside as they stood tall together in Jacksonville. And wwe.com can now reveal that Triple H and Shawn Michaels most certainly HAVE put their past behind them, as D-Generation X will reunite in less than two weeks to challenge Charlie Haas and Nick Dinsmore for the World Tag Team Championships in Kansas City at Backlash. The Master Craftsmen were reached for comment, but the group declined to comment on this development. Despite their long, tumultuous history together - as friends and enemies - Shawn Michaels and Triple H never held tag team gold together. On April 27, they'll have the chance to put that right.

    ...
    ...
    ...








    WWE Superstars | April 16 2008


     

    Todd Grisham and Al Snow host the show as ever with a Raw main eventtonight, which sees The Black Diamond Shelton Benjamin face Paul Burchill.

    Opening the show, Evan Bourne defeats Daivari @ 07:06 with Air Bourne in an entertaining contest.

    Next up, The East Coast Party Boys defeat TNT @ 05:22 when Maryse makes a mistake trying to interfere on her teams behalf. Following the match, Tomko storms off, and Test isn’t happy with Maryse either. The short lived tag team look like they’re on their final legs already…

    Xavier Woods records a rare win, defeating a local jobber @ 03:01 with his Hammerlock Sweep DDT.

    Then in the main event of the show, Shelton Benjamin puts on a show, defeating Paul Burchill in a decent main event @ 08:28, putting the Brit away with Paydirt, as he gears up for a showdown with Mark Henry at Backlash.


     
    END OF SHOW


    *I’ll be posting Smackdown tomorrow. It’ll be in recap form again. Thanks for all the feedback for Raw. I’ll do my best to reply in kind to each of you if I haven’t already.

    EDIT* Smackdown won't be posted until TUESDAY. Won't have access to my laptop until then, and that's where the show is saved.
    Last edited by Wolf Beast; 04-16-2017 at 08:25 AM.

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    Smackdown Re: Being The Booker








    Friday Night Smackdown | April 18 2008 | Ft. Lauderdale FL

    *CREDIT; OBEY*


    Opening Video

    A brief package airs hyping the first WWE title defence for Edge tonight against Garrison Cade; who is also on the search for a first WWE Championship following his win in a Fatal Four Way Elimination Match last week.

    Pyro



    The show opens up with in ring action right away; a Triple Threat #1 Contenders Match for a shot at the U.S Champion Batista in a weeks time, as Joey Styles & Jerry Lawler present the show, hyping the main event later tonight. Damien Sandow, Jeff Hardy & MVP battle it out for the title shot in an entertaining, action packed contest which doesn’t follow the traditional two in/one out formula of WWE triple threat matches, but instead, all three men remain in the ring and part of the action almost throughout the entire match.

    The finish comes with Sandow stopping Jeff from flying off the top, slamming him onto the mat, and delivering his Elbow of Disdain. However, before he can follow up, MVP cuts him off with the Drive-By kick, with Hardy breaking the count. Jeff tosses MVP out of the ring, and slams Sandow back down, before delivering the SWANTON BOMB … but MVP slides back in after impact, and catches Jeff with the PLAY OF THE DAY!!!!! MVP covers Jeff for the 1...2...3 @ 07:55, earning a shot at Batista for the U.S Title next week on Smackdown!!!

    Porter has his hand raised in victory, but doesn’t celebrate for long, as the intimidating sights of the U.S Champion Batista and his partner Lashley appear on the stage with Steven Richards. The Gods of War remain stoic on the stage, and stare down the ramp at the victorious MVP, with Porter showing no fear of The Gods of War, motioning that the belt will be around his waist next week. On commentary, neither Styles or Lawler can see a path to victory for MVP, but Styles puts over the spirit of MVP, stating it’ll be a hell of a fight next week.



    Commercial Break



    Backstage, The Brian Kendrick argues with the Smackdown GM Finlay over his recent treatment. Kendrick says he has suffered enough over the last few weeks; first cleaning the car, and then last week working at the concession stand. TBK complains that his hair still hasn’t got it’s bounce back after last week, and demands a match tonight; “OR ELSE.”

    Surprisingly, Finlay doesn’t rise to the threat from Kendrick, and in fact gives in to the demands of the diva like TBK, telling him he can have a match tonight, as he needs an opponent for the newest Smackdown superstar that’s been drafted from Raw. Kendrick accepts the match, telling Finlay he’s glad the GM has finally seen sense and hopes the Irishman can start to appreciate the talent at his disposal…

    In somewhat of a showcase match for KURT ANGLE, the recently drafted Olympian from Raw to Smackdown, makes his in-ring return to Friday nights, taking on the other man drafted to Smackdown last week; DEUCE. It’s a short nights work for Angle, putting Deuce away @ 04:02 via Anklelock, with it being pretty clear that Deuce wont be getting a push of any kind on Smackdown now that he’s going into singles competition.

    On commentary, Styles and Lawler both call Angle a definite future contender for the WWE Title on Smackdown, whilst also hyping his match with Raws Brent Albright at Backlash - with Angle given special dispensation to appear on the Raw PPV in 9 days time - saying Angle looks as good as ever right now…



    Commercial Break



    Josh Mathews conducts an interview with Chris Jericho backstage, focusing on Rob Van Dams actions last week, leading to Jericho being eliminated from the #1 Contender match. Jericho doesn’t even say Van Dams name throughout the promo, referring to him as “that lowlife” and “that sore loser” when describing RVD. Jericho explains that he tried to get the tag match tonight (he & Nemeth vs. London & RVD) cancelled as he doesn’t feel like competing with a madman like RVD is a safe working environment.

    Jericho calls RVD out of control, and calls for RVD to be suspended or fired - “or better yet - put down like the rabid dog he is.” Mathews suggests that Jericho brought this on himself in the way he double-crossed Van Dam at WrestleMania, but Jericho rejects that point, telling the interviewer that he shouldn’t be subjected to this level of violence for having the ability & intelligence to do what it takes to have his arm raised. Jericho then suggests that if RVD wants to blame anyone for his lack of success, he needs to look in the mirror.

    Jericho brings an end to the interview, and calls out to his partner for tonight - Nick Nemeth - catching up with him, and telling the up-and-comer in no uncertain terms that he will simply do as he says tonight and as long as Nemeth follows Jerichos instructions they’ll be just fine. Not even waiting for a response, Jericho walks off, but evidently, Nemeth isn’t happy with the attitude of Jericho toward him and shakes his head as the camera fades out…



    In a rather interesting match up, the WWE tag team champions; MNM greet The Fight Factory to Smackdown for their *NON-TITLE* debut match, following the challenge laid out by Burke & Barrett a week ago. During the entrances, Styles calls this a huge opportunity for the debuting team of Burke & Barrett - though he points out that Burke has been on the roster for two years and spent much of that time tagging with Booker T.



    Commercial Break



    Smackdown returns with the match, as Burke and Barrett are every bit as good as MNM, giving the champions a very tough nights work - and they clearly take on the roles of heels, as Barrett especially roughs up Nitro & Mercury with some stiff looking offence. Styles and Lawler point out the bare-knuckle background of Barrett which was alluded to by Burke two weeks ago when they first appeared, and it’s serving him & Burke well.

    Melina looks extremely concerned for her team - especially after she initially didn’t want them to take the match - seeing her champions take a pounding from the new team on the scene. Mercury is worked over for a long period of time, as Barrett and Burke work cohesively, with no hesitation to bend the rules … but eventually gets enough space off an Enziguri to Burke to make the hot tag to Nitro - and Nitro picks up the pace.

    MNM show the Fight Factory why they’re champions with a superb rally after being dominated for much of the match, but as they set up the SNAPSHOT on Burke, Barrett makes the save, FLATTENING Mercury with a devastating Elbow Smash to the face - which Styles refers to as the BULLHAMMER!!! It leaves Nitro to fight the odds - which despite his best efforts, he is unable to do for long.

    The Fight Factory have Nitro in deep trouble, and Melina is powerless to do anything about it. Just as it looks like Burke & Barrett are about to shock the WWE Tag Team Champions (albeit in a non-title match) with a decisive win though … LOS LATINOS(??) hit the ring, ATTACKING BURKE AND BARRETT!!! Instantly, the official calls for the bell, signalling a DQ win for the Fight Factory @ 11:43.

    Styles & Lawler are both surprised by the appearance of Chavo & Super Crazy, unable to explain the actions of two supposed fan favourites - though Styles mentions that both men are growing frustrated at their lack of success & conceived lack of opportunities on Smackdown. The element of surprise helps Los Latinos get the upper hand on the bigger team, and they dump Burke from the ring, before doubling up on Barrett.

    MNM meanwhile, have recovered, and despite being on the verge of defeat against the Fight Factory, they do the right thing, and put a stop to the attack from Chavo & Super Crazy. Nitro and Mercury try to settle the pair, looking to help Los Latinos see sense … but Chavo & Super Crazy attack MNM too!!! With MNM already exhausted after a brutalizing match, Los Latinos are able to get the better of the fight, but both men spot Burke and Barrett coming back in and end the attacks.

    Creating space, Chavo and Super Crazy shove MNM into the path of the Fight Factory, before hightailing it out of the ring. As they back up the ramp, Chavo shouts back at the ring; “we wont be overlooked!! You two have earned NOTHING!!” clearly showing their anger at Burke & Barrett getting a (non-title) match with the tag champions, whilst they have toiled on Smackdown.

    In the ring, MNM & the Fight Factory amicably go their separate ways, with a common enemy on this night, though Burke points at the belts, telling MNM they aren’t finished with MNM, and want another crack at the champions, having been seemingly moments from a huge debut win. Melina though doesn’t want her boys engaging any further - knowing how close they were to a clean loss tonight - and calls them from the ring, as Smackdown goes to commercial.



    Commercial Break



    Backstage, Los Latinos are having to be restrained, as Finlay berates the pair, asking them what they were thinking getting involved out there. Chavo does the talking for the pair, telling the GM they’re fed up of being overlooked and passed over, blaming Finlay. Before the GM can respond though, Carlito & Kofi Kingston; The Caribbean Connection, arrive on the scene.

    Carlito & Kofi attempt to talk sense to Chavo & Super Crazy, treading over the same ground as last week, saying if anyone should be upset at Burke & Barrett getting a match with MNM off the bat - it’s them. Carlito points out that he & Kofi have beaten Los Latinos more times than they can remember, suggesting that’s why Los Latinos aren’t getting matches on Smackdown.

    Los Latinos then crack again, and lunge at Carlito and Kofi, sparking a brief scuffle between the two teams backstage, which Finlay quickly breaks up with help from referees and officials. Finlay demands Los Latinos are thrown out of the building, shouting as they are led away that he’ll deal with them next week. As Los Latinos are led off, Kofi & Carlito start to talk to Finlay about a title opportunity for themselves - but Finlay isn’t in the mood to discuss it and storms off.



    Elsewhere, former WWE Champion RANDY ORTON is seen walking into the locker room, and approaches his former lackey (now no ones lackey) GARRISON CADE as Cade prepares for the biggest match of his career later tonight; his first ever one on one shot at the WWE Title. Orton attempts to speak with Cade, hinting at offering Cade a helping hand tonight, but the big Texan stops Orton mid-sentence.

    Cade makes it clear to Orton that he doesn’t want Randy to get involved in his match tonight, telling the former champion he doesn’t need anyone’s help, and doesn’t want anyone grabbing onto his coattails. “I thought I made it clear before?? You an I?? We‘re not friends. You cross me, or if I even see you out there tonight, Imma see to it your next meal is through a straw. We clear??” Orton says nothing, but looks livid at the verbal dressing down from Cade, who gets back to taping his wrists ahead of his career defining match later tonight…



    Commercial Break



    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o2tXNUJ852A
    ~ R-TRUTH ~
    … COMING TO SMACKDOWN …
    SOON!!



    Chris Jericho & Nick Nemeth
    team up to face Rob Van Dam & Paul London in a tag team match that has plenty of action throughout. RVD is desperate to get his hands on Jericho, still looking for revenge for WrestleMania, but Jericho does everything he can to keep out of the path of RVD. Nick Nemeth grows frustrated with Jericho as the match wears on, with Jericho berating the youngster, and telling him what to do at every step, whilst also putting Nemeth in danger by frantically avoiding RVD and tagging Nemeth in unaware.

    In the opposite corner, London also finds himself frustrated with the reckless and rather selfish attitude of Van Dam during the match, as RVD continues to spiral since the loss at WrestleMania to Jericho. Styles comments that RVD has had enough of being taken advantage of and wont rest until he has his revenge on Jericho. Despite Jericho & Nemeth getting into a brief shoving match, they keep their calm, and RVD’s actions are what leads to London being singled out and worked over for a short period, with RVD’s lack of discipline puts his team in danger through a commercial break.



    Commercial Break



    Soon after the commercial, London fights back, getting a hot tag to RVD - which prevents Jericho from accepting a tag from Nemeth!! Van Dam loses it though, and ignores the legal man, coming after Jericho instead!!! RVD knocks Jericho off the apron, and beats on him on the outside, with Jericho raking the eyes to escape, crawling back into the ring. RVD picks up a chair, coming after Jericho - shoving the referee aside - and throws the chair at Y2J - but Jericho tosses the chair back at RVD, and again escapes … this time leaving altogether!!!!

    Van Dam tosses the chair in anger, but decides to leave the match - and go in pursuit of Jericho!! Before he can though, Nemeth looks to take advantage of the distracted Van Dam, but RVD ducks under, and knocks Nemeth down with a spin kick. London tags the back of Van Dam before he leaves in order to become the legal man, and with Nemeth already down … London only has to deliver the 450 SPLASH for the 1...2...3 @ 10:54!!!

    Whilst the frustrated London has his hand raised, footage cuts backstage to follow Jericho and Van Dam. We see Jericho grabbing his bag, and quickly leaving, shoving past random workers on his way out of the building, and he eyes a Taxi - pushing past the people waiting for it!!! RVD is in pursuit, but fails to catch the Taxi before Jericho can depart.



    Elsewhere, EDGE is shown warming up, ahead of his first ever title defence as WWE Champion. At ringside, Lawler tells Styles how different it can be defending a title, as opposed to chasing it - and Edge will have to adapt to that feeling tonight - but says it’s something that many men before Edge have failed to do.

    Styles then transitions, talking about next weeks main event; Bryan Danielson defending the Cruiserweight title against Jamie Noble in a rematch from Saturday Nights Main Event, as after the commercial, Joey will conduct an in-ring interview with the two men…



    Commercial Break



    Back from the commercial, Joey Styles brings out Danielson & Noble for the in ring interview. With both men in the ring, Styles firstly asks Danielson if he feels like he is now 100% following his brief lay-off after WrestleMania. Noble grabs the mic, and answers for Danielson - telling Styles that there’s nothing wrong with Bryan and never was; “except for a big ‘ol yella streak runnin down his back!!”

    Danielson remains calm and measured, laughing off the accusation from Noble, reminding Jamie, Joey and the fans that he had to walk around with a sling for the last two weeks. Noble pipes back up, asking why they aren’t fighting tonight - anxious for his shot - with Danielson - again calm and composed - explaining that it wasn’t his decision, but Finlays for the match to be next week.

    Styles gets between the pair, getting things back under control, asking Noble if he truly believes Danielson has been ducking him, with Joey making sure to explain that Danielsons injuries sustained from Money in the Bank at WrestleMania were legit. Noble ignores that and outright says Danielson HAS avoided him, saying everyone knows he kicked Danielsons ass at Saturday Nights Main Event at the beginning of last month.

    “But the important thing is that I walked away with the title, Jamie”
    is the measured response from Danielson. Starting to be irritated by Nobles accusations, Danielson points out that he was always willing to give Noble another crack at the belt - but he doesn’t make the decisions around here; Finlay does. Noble again calls it more excuses; “you got more excuses than a Cactus has spikes, boy!!”

    Getting frustrated, Danielson tells Noble he’s never made an excuse - and if he had been allowed to, he’d have fought Noble the week after WrestleMania, despite his injuries, and forcefully tells Noble he’s been kind enough to put up with Noble until now because he knows Noble is an emotional guy; “but I‘ve had just about enough of being run down by you, Jamie!! I take pride in being a fighting champion, and it‘s pretty offensive to be accused otherwise!!”

    Noble clenches his fist, restraining himself, with Danielson fired up too - animosity rising between the pair - as Styles steps in again, asking Danielson if his undefeated streak {he has yet to be pinned or made to submit since arriving in the WWE} gives him more confidence or adds more pressure going into a big title fight. Danielson - composing himself after his fiery rebuttal moments ago - tells Joey he’s taking it one day and one match at a time, and doesn’t get caught up in streaks - he wants to win every match regardless.

    Danielson goes on, acknowledging that while it doesn’t change his focus, it probably paints a bigger target on his chest for people looking to knock him off. Bryan states that all streaks come to an end, but he’ll fight to keep the title with all he has. Noble is then asked if he gives the ‘undefeated streak’ any consideration - but Noble shakes his head, commenting that Danielsons streak means nothing and goes on to say “all I care about is that strap on his shoulder and it goin around my waist where it belongs!!”

    Styles turns back to Danielson, asking if he has any last comments ahead of next weeks anticipated showdown. Bryan takes the mic, addressing Noble, telling him he knows Noble thinks he’s been ducking him - but he hasn’t. Danielson states he’s here now, and he’ll be here next week. “I‘ve never ducked a challenge, and trust me; win, lose or draw next week - I wont make any excuses … and I hope you don’t either. And when it‘s over - hopefully we‘ll put this behind us, and shake hands like men.”

    Danielson then offers his title rival a handshake to close the heated segment. Noble takes a while to think about it - with boos ringing out for the longer he takes to think about it - but eventually, Noble accepts the offer. The two men shake hands, and as they do, Noble brings his mic to his mouth and tells Danielson that he better NOT make any excuses after next week…



    Commercial Break





    **VIDEO PACKAGE**

    Clip of Bret Hart rolling up Bam Bam Bigelow to win the King of the Ring tournament in 1993.

    “I‘M THE BEST THERE IS, THE BEST THERE WAS, AND THE BEST THERE EVER WILL BE”

    Narrator: It has given the platform for champions to establish themselves.

    Clip of Owen Hart being crowned King of the Ring in 1994, as we hear him yell over it.

    “I‘M THE KING OF HARTS!!!”

    Narrator: It has immortalized greats forever.

    Clip of Stone Cold Steve Austin winning the 1996 King of the Ring tournament, with the sound bite over it.

    “AUSTIN THREE SIXTEEN SAYS, I JUST WHIPPED YOUR ASS”

    Narrator: It ushered in the birth of a new attitude.

    Clip of Triple H having his hand raised in 1997.

    “THE KING OF THE RING!!!”

    Narrator: Stars have been born.

    Clip of Kurt Angle dropping to his knees in victory in 2000.

    “IT‘S TRUE, IT‘S TRUE”

    Narrator: Legends have been made.

    Clip of Brock Lesnar having his hand raised in 2002, as we hear Paul Heymans voice over the top.

    “THE NEXT BIG THING, BRRRRROCK LLLLLESNARRRRR”

    Narrator: Careers have skyrocketed.

    Clips of Mister Kennedy with the crown in 2006, Edge with his trophy in 2001 and Brent Albright a year ago, over a sound bite of Brent during his victory speech…

    “NOW THAT I’M KING OF THE RING, YOU PEOPLE ARE GONNA SIT UP AND NOTICE WHAT I’M CAPABLE OF!!”

    Narrator: The King of the Ring tournament has provided some of the most memorable moments in sports entertainment history, and on Saturday, June 23, 2008 … a new King will be crowned, in the home of royalty…

    Clips of London, Buckingham Palace, Beefeaters etc…

    Narrator: Once again, the King of the Ring tournament climaxes on NBC, with quarter finals, semi finals and the grand final. One rising star will eclipse all others…

    Quick clips again of the prominent former winners.

    Narrator: Which superstar will use the King of the Ring tournament to follow these legends, icons and immortals into the pantheon of greatness??

    ~ THE 2008 KING OF THE RING TOURNAMENT ~
    !! LIVE ON SATURDAY NIGHTS MAIN EVENT ON NBC !!
    JUNE 2008 | O2 ARENA, LONDON, ENGLAND
    ***



    Styles and Lawler discuss the upcoming King of the Ring tournament, reminding us the news from last week that TED DIBIASE Junior is the first official entrant in this years 32 man field - despite the fact he hasn’t even debuted yet. Styles states that the Smackdown locker room aren’t happy, hinting that Finlay wasn’t given a choice on the matter with the decision coming in ‘over his head’ as Lawler comments ‘Money talks’ hinting at the power of Ted’s famous father…



    Meanwhile, The Brian Kendrick is in ring, waiting for his opponent, looking excited to be back in action after a few weeks of being punished by Finlay… but it’s not a happy return to the ring for Kendrick, as it becomes clear why Finlay was so easy going in giving into TBK’s demand…

    **VIRTUAL VOODOO**

    UMAGA
    is revealed as the latest Raw superstar to be drafted to Smackdown, and the Samoan Bulldozer is led down the ramp by the beaming Armando Estrada. Kendrick tries to plead with the referee, seemingly feigning an injury, as Styles confirms Umaga is officially on Smackdown - but his match with Christian at Backlash will STILL go ahead as scheduled - and as Umaga climbs into the ring, Kendrick looks to reason with him … but is instantly flattened like a bug.

    It doesn’t pick up from there for Kendrick - it’s a short match, but it isn’t painless - as Umaga brutalizes TBK, going through his arsenal of moves, before putting Kendrick away impressively @ 02:23 with a Samoan Spike for the 1...2...3!!!



    After the match, and after Lawler and Styles put over the shockwaves being sent around the Smackdown locker room upon the arrival of Umaga, Styles also takes the time state that GREG HELMS has also been drafted to Smackdown tonight - but it will be a long time before we’ll see him, as Helms is expected to be out of action for up to 12 months due to his recent neck surgery.



    Cutting backstage, Kristal Marshall interviews Kurt Angle about his return to Smackdown. Angle reiterates what he said last week; his objective is to regain the WWE Title, and states he’ll be watching tonight’s upcoming main event very closely, saying - as he did last week - that’ll he’ll be heading the line for the next shot at the gold.

    First though, Angle tells Kristal he has unfinished business with Brent Albright, and before he meets Mr. Money in the Bank at Backlash, Angle is going BACK to Raw on Monday for a one-off appearance in an eight man tag match. Sending a message to Albright, Angle tells the world that Albright is good - great even - and with the briefcase, it’s a matter of time before he can call himself a world champion … “but you can never call yourself the ‘wrestling machine’ … because that‘s ME!!!”

    Angle goes on, saying he proved he is the best today when he beat the best ever at WrestleMania, but at Backlash, he’ll prove again that he’s still the best in the business today - and that whilst one day, Albright may well have that same distinction - “that day isn’t here yet” and Brent will have to wait a little longer before he can call himself ‘the best’. Just as Angle shapes up to leave though, RANDY ORTON shows up, having been listening all along to what Angle said.

    Orton reminds Kurt that while he may be at the front of the line for a shot at the WWE Title - Orton can jump the line any time he likes with his guaranteed title rematch. Angle nods and chuckles before taking a moment to think, and eventually extends his hand, introducing himself … “I don’t think our paths have crossed, have they?? Kurt Angle.” Orton doesn’t accept the shake, but instead eyeballs Kurt; “I think you’re right … and for your sake … let‘s keep it that way.” Orton walks off, threat sent, but Angle doesn’t look intimidated whatsoever.



    Commercial Break



    The introductions take place for the big WWE Title match, with Edge wrestling for the first time on TV as champion. Cade looks anything but nervous despite this being his first ever one on one opportunity for the richest prize in the game, whilst Styles and Lawler quickly plug next weeks TWO title matches; Batista vs. MVP for the U.S Title and Danielson vs. Noble for the Cruiserweight gold…

    The main event goes down with Edge and Garrison Cade holding nothing back with barely any feeling out process - Edge refuses to take a back seat, wrestling like a hungry challenger as opposed to a defending champion, whilst Cade brings it like he always does during this singles run he’s had over the last six months. Cade takes over early, but Edge fights back, clotheslining Cade over the top to the outside then gets a huge pop for a SOMERSAULT PLANCHA to the outside!!!!! Both men are down, as Smackdown heads to the final commercial of the night.



    Commercial Break



    Cade is in charge on the other side of the break, taking over during the commercial when he caught Edge coming off the top with a sidewalk slam. Not surprisingly, after all the rumours surrounding it’s condition, Cade looks to be targeting the neck of Edge as he wears the champion down. Edge passes the test though, proving his neck ISN’T a major issue as he battles back, turning the tide with the EDGE-O-MATIC for a near fall. Edge sets up the SPEAR but Cade KICKS Edge away, and follows up with a swinging neck breaker for a near fall of his own!!

    The action spills to the outside again shortly after, with Cade overpowering Edge, sending him into the steps, before removing the mats, and delivers a side suplex on the exposed floor!!! Back inside, Cade looks for the RAZORS EDGE, but as he carries Edge from the corner, Edge shifts, countering with a HURRICANRANA!!! Edge again sets up for a Spear, but this time, Cade side steps Edge, and catches him on the return with a vicious SIT OUT SPINEBUSTER!!! 1...2...EDGE KICKS OUT!!!!!

    Sensing the chance to put the champion away, Cade looks to finish Edge, setting up his feared HEART PUNCH … BUT EDGE ESCAPES!!! Edge breaks free, ducking a big boot, then ducking a wild clothesline … BEFORE CRASHING THROUGH CADE WITH AN ALMIGHTY SPEAR!!!!! Edge covers … 1...2...3!!!!! Edge retains the WWE Championship @ 14:39!!!

    Edge is successful in his first title defence - getting over that initial hurdle - against a more than tough challenge in Garrison Cade, but as the champion has his arm raised and he hoists the title above his head … RANDY ORTON slithers into the ring, and spins Edge around - RKO!!!!!

    Orton drops Edge with the RKO, and then - instinctively - does the same to Garrison Cade!!! After that, Orton grabs the title, dropping down beside Edge and getting in the face of the prone champion, telling him “none of this is real. THIS is still mine!!!” before getting up, and initially shapes up to PUNT the champion … but appears to have a change of heart.

    Looking outside, Orton looks at the exposed floor … and with a sick smirk on his face has a different idea - before stomping Edge to the outside. Orton follows out, and stands over the helpless champion … BEFORE ATTEMPTING TO PILEDRIVE EDGE ON THE EXPOSED FLOOR!!!!

    Styles screams “NO!!”, as he recalls Orton Piledriving Edge at Wrestle Mania before Edge miraculously survived … but before Orton can deliver the move - EDGE BACKDROPS OUT OF IT!!! Orton lands with a thud on the floor, and crawls away in pain, dragging himself up on the barrier by the time keeper as Edge recovers … and in a split second … EDGE EXPLODES …

    AND SPEARS ORTON RIGHT THROUGH THE BARRIER!!!!!!!!!

    The fans inside the BankAtlantic Centre come unglued with a “HOLY SHIT” chant, as Edge and Orton lay amongst the rubble as officials rush to ringside to tend to both men. Edge eventually emerges, staggering to his feet as he is handed his belt, which he kisses before looking back at the carnage as Orton is surrounded by officials with Smackdown going off the air amidst absolute carnage…

    END OF SHOW
     

  6. #66
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    Re: Being The Booker

    BREAKING NEWS; ORTON INJURED





    PWTorch are reporting that former WWE Champion, Randy Orton suffered a legit collarbone injury at the Smackdown tapings this past Tuesday - an injury which could keep Orton out of action for up to four months. The injury is said to have happened during the spot at the end of the show, where Edge speared Orton through the barrier. Fans in attendance noted that medical staff surrounded Randy and tended to him for 10-15 minutes once the cameras had stopped rolling, before he was helped out of the arena in visible discomfort. At first, it was thought this was an angle, but sources have confirmed the injury is legit.

    Orton is expected to undergo surgery this weekend, but the injury could throw plans on Smackdown into chaos. Orton had been slated to challenge Edge for the WWE Championship at Judgment Day in a rematch from their WrestleMania main event, but plans are now said to be up in the air, with a lot of angles now in need of a rewrite heading into the Smackdown brand PPV next month in Minneapolis. It's expected at this point that the likeliest opponents that can be slotted in to face Edge would be Kurt Angle or Umaga.



    ---



    *MAIN EVENT SET FOR MONDAY NIGHT RAW*

    In addition to a final showdown between John Cena and Ric Flair ahead of their World Heavyweight Championship match at Backlash, wwe.com has confirmed a huge eight man tag team match this Monday on Raw. Both Kurt Angle and Umaga - recently drafted from Raw to Smackdown - will be back on Raw for one final week as they get set to wrap up their current programs with Brent Albright and Christian respectively at Backlash. Angle will team with Christian and the reunited D-Generation X tandem of Triple H and Shawn Michaels to face The Master Craftsmen trio and the Samoan Bulldozer.





    I'll post Raw early next week. I've made a start on Backlash too, which wont be in full detail, but it's somewhere in between recap & full show.

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    Raw Re: Being The Booker










    Monday Night Raw | April 21 2008 | Louisville KY

    *BANNER CREDIT; OBEY*



    “ARE YOU READY??”
    **BREAK IT DOWN**

    !!!!!!!!!!

    The atmosphere is electric inside Freedom Hall as the old familiar D-Generation X music opens up Raw right away, with the classic jump cuts that could strike anyone down with an epileptic fit - like the old days … as SHAWN MICHAELS and TRIPLE H emerge on the stage TOGETHER - in traditional D-X attire to a MONSTER pop!!!!!

    Jim Ross: DO NOT ADJUST YOUR TELEVISION SETS!!! This IS happening!! The band is back together!! And in just SIX days time at Backlash on Pay-Per-View, The Game and The Showstopper will join forces for an epic tag team showdown where they will look to dethrone The Master Craftsmen and claim the World Tag Team Championships!!! D-GENERATION X IS BACK!!!!!

    The Coach: I never thought we’d see the day, J.R!! I never imagined these two would ever be on the same side and see eye to eye again!!! Not after everything they’ve been through over the years!!

    Jim Ross: You weren’t the only one, Coach!! But not only are Shawn Michaels and Triple H on the same page - they’re singing off the same hymn sheet!! And before they team up this Sunday, we’ll see both men in action tonight as part of an enormous EIGHT MAN tag team match; it’ll be The Game, Shawn Michaels, Christian and Kurt Angle forming one highly combustible team - just think of the history between those four alone - to take on The Master Craftsmen and Umaga!!! All ahead of three major match ups this coming Sunday!!

    The Coach: And just when you thought it couldn’t get any bigger - how about ME; The Coach!! The Playas Club is back tonight, and joining me in my own personal crib will be Ric Flair and the World Champion John Cena!!!

    Jim Ross: That promises to be ANOTHER highly combustible situation - just six days away from what promises to be an historic night in Kansas City!! And also tonight - two more draftees will arrive on Raw from Smackdown. Who is comin to Raw!!??

    D-X reach the ring, and after the old DX pose, they set off a green ‘X’ pyro behind them as they crotch chop in the middle of the ring. They then set off to individual turnbuckles to pose some more, enjoying the moment. Both men soak up the ovation as the music dies down, and they meet in the middle of the ring.

    Triple H: Louisville, Kentucky…

    Cheap pop. Triple H looks up cheekily and raises his eyebrow.

    Triple H: Are ya ready??

    Pop. Triple H shakes his head violently.

    Triple H: NO!!!!!

    The Game charges up the ropes…

    Triple H: I SAID … ARRRRRE … YOUUUUU … RRRREADDDYYY!!!!!?????

    Bigger pop. Michaels shakes at his ear as if he has a burst ear drum, before patting the shoulder of The Game.

    Shawn Michaels: I think they’re ready…

    Light chuckle from the fans. Triple H smirks, then goes back into promo mode.

    Triple H: Then … for the thouuusands in attendance … for the millions watching at home…

    Shawn Michaels: Wait- wait-…

    Triple H looks up, puzzled by the interruption from Shawn, who leans in to ask The Game a question - but keeps the microphone close enough for everyone to hear.

    Shawn Michaels: You’re not gonna … uhm … Pedigree me, right??

    Another chuckle from the fans for the callback to the ill-fated 2002 reunion. Again Triple H smirks, then shakes his head - offering his little finger.

    Triple H: Pinky promise.

    Michaels accepts the ‘Pinky Promise’ to a nice pop, as they both get back into position.

    Triple H: Now … where were we?? Oh yeah … lllllllllllllets get ready to SUCK IIIIIIITTTT!!!!!

    Big pop for the classic DX intro. Michaels and Hunter look around the arena, soaking up the adulation, and a ‘D-X’ chant reverberates around Freedom Hall … before HBK speaks up.

    Shawn Michaels: And of course … if you aint down with that?? We got two words for ya-

    “SUCK IT!!!” ~ The fans.

    Again, the two men drink in the moment, as Triple H puts an arm around the shoulder of Shawn, addressing the fans.

    Triple H: So … you all remembered, huh?? It’s been a long time, right??

    Shawn Michaels: Too long.

    Triple H:
    Yeah … sorry bout that.

    Laughs from the fans. The two look awkwardly at each other for a moment, before Shawn speaks up.

    Shawn Michaels: I know what you’re all thinking - how can the two of you stand side by side after everything you’ve put one another through over the years, right?? You and I, Hunter?? We’ve beaten each other up, beaten each other down, in the ring, in the back, on the street … and that was even before we fell out!!!

    Another laugh from the fans. HHH and HBK both smile too.

    Shawn Michaels: Despite everything we’ve done to each other though … this man is still my brother. You had my back last week, Hunter - and I thank ya for it.

    They share a brief hug to a nice pop, but Triple H quickly gets back to business…

    Triple H: Alright - that’s enough of the Hallmark crap, WE ARE D-X DAMN IT!!!!

    Pop.

    Triple H: And that means runnin roughshod, causing trouble and terrorizing anyone in our path - just because we CAN!!! It’s been too damn long since D-Generation X sent a shiver down the spines of every… single … man and woman in the back.

    The Game pauses for a moment before continuing.

    Triple H: Well hell just froze over, and we just sent the whole damn place duckin for cover!!!

    Pop. Michaels speaks up again.

    Shawn Michaels: But you can come outta hidin boys and girls … no need to panic - yet - because right now, Hunter and I have our sights set on just three people … two tag team title belts … and ONE match this Sunday at Backlash!!!

    Triple H: Because if you’re gonna put this band back together, you gotta aim higher than ever before … and the one thing we were missing last time we were together?? Tag team gold.

    Shawn Michaels: And if you people know us … we loves our gold!!!

    Pop.

    Triple H: So this Sunday, that’s exactly what we plan on winning. Craftsmen?? You laid out the challenge - and we’ll gladly accept the invitation, because we haven’t got time to waste.

    Shawn Michaels: After all - we’re here for a good time … not a long time. And time is of the essence. So this Sunday - Charlie, Nick - you’re gonna-

    **MEET YOUR MASTER**

    The music of THE MASTER CRAFTSMEN cuts Shawn off mid-flow, much to the chagrin of Michaels and Hunter - as well as the fans who were enjoying the DX nostalgia promo. Albright, Haas & Dinsmore stand at the top of the ramp, looking less than happy, as the leader; Albright, speaks up first.

    Brent Albright: We can agree on one thing - this DX reunion wont be around for a long time … and Backlash sure will be a good time … but NOT for the two of you.

    In the ring, Michaels mockingly mouths; “That‘s a good line!!”

    Charlie Haas: I don’t know what you thought you were gonna accomplish with this nostalgia act … but it aint gonna end with the moment of glory you think it will. Times have changed … the days of “The Kliq” calling the shots and being on top?? They ended a long time ago.

    DX still look unconcerned, as they stand in the ring, leaning on the ropes, as they let the trio have their say.

    Nick Dinsmore:
    I remember hearing stories about DX. Hell, I remember watching your antics on Raw back in the day. I guess you could say you guys were amusing - if that’s your thing. But not for me. I didn’t tune in to wrestling to see two clowns full of innuendo making a mockery of their peers. People put the two of you - DX - on a pedestal like you were some kind of Gods. Not to me you weren’t. Not to us … but it sounds like you’ve got the right type of morons here that did worship you here in Loserville!!

    Heat. Dinsmore glares at the fans, before turning his attention back to DX.

    Nick Dinsmore: All you two did in your prime was run around here creating chaos and disorder. You goofed around, disrupting people who just tried to do their jobs - and you two got off on making people miserable. Your success in DX was never measured in what you accomplished between the ropes … no … you two were too busy tryin to make each other laugh, aint that right??

    HBK looks to Hunter and they shrug at one another, before Michaels responds;

    Shawn Michaels:
    GUILTY!!!

    Laughs from the fans. Dinsmore is furious with the nonchalant nature of Michaels and has to be cooled down by Albright, as Haas takes over again.

    Charlie Haas:
    The two of you are everything we despise in this sport!! You were in the business of telling people to “SUCK IT!!!” … whereas WE are in the business of taking care of business in the ring - where it matters.

    Smirking, Albright steps forward then looks around at the titles being held by Haas and Dinsmore as he speaks…

    Brent Albright:
    And we got all the evidence we need right here. We have the World Tag Team Titles, and … well … I’m the World Heavyweight Champion in waiting.

    Albright raises the Money in the Bank briefcase to boos.

    Nick Dinsmore:
    We’re the ones that hold the power around here now. And as good as the two of you are - or were - you both shined best when the spotlight focused on ONE of you. Your problem was that you both wanted the spotlight - and it still is. Charlie and I?? We SHARE the spotlight. We’re a team - we’re ONE unit. And the two of you are just two individuals wearing the same shirt.

    In the ring, DX look to make a joke of that comment too, comparing their shirts, and mockingly realising they’re wearing the same shirt - not taking the Craftsmen seriously at all.

    Charlie Haas:
    And we’ll prove that at Backlash - because while the two of you are too busy designing shirts and planning pranks … we’ll be concentrating on breaking the two of you down, and successfully retaining the most important thing in our world. See … we’re the antitheses of everything DX stood for and everything DX stands for still today.

    HBK mouths the word “antitheses” as if he’s never heard of it, and looks to Triple H to double check he heard it correctly. He then responds…

    Shawn Michaels:
    Well … you sure got that right!! You most certainly are the “antitheses” of DX - whatever that means - because lemme tell ya, the three of you wouldn’t know a good time if it smacked ya across your face!!!

    Pop. HBK leans on the ropes again with a grin on his face.

    Shawn Michaels:
    And pal, trust me - if we wanted those tag team titles in the past?? We woulda had ‘em!!

    Another pop. On the ramp, the trio shake their heads defiantly.

    Triple H:
    We’re not gonna lie - winning those tag team titles?? They weren’t my ambition when I decided to come back after WrestleMania. I know it wasn’t Shawns either. But right now?? To us, those tag team titles are THE single most important thing on this planet!!!

    Cheers from the fans, and another light ‘DX’ chant can be heard.

    Triple H:
    So you can bet your sorry asses that we CAN share the spotlight for that common goal this Sunday. And yeah, it’s been a long time since we teamed up, and yeah, you may well be the best team in the world right now - but you’re not just lookin at any two individuals. You’re not just facing another two guys this Sunday. You are lookin at The Showstopper, and you’re looking at The Game … two of the absolute BEST to ever lace ‘em up … and we WILL walk out of Backlash with those titles … because we ARE that damn good!!!

    Big pop for the serious tone from Hunter - showing that he IS taking Haas and Dinsmore seriously - if that was in doubt.

    Shawn Michaels:
    AND - if you’re not down with that?? We got - TWO WORDS FOR YA-

    “SUCK IT!!!” ~ The fans.

    **BREAK IT DOWN** fills the arena again, as Triple H and Shawn Michaels parade around the ring, as the Master Craftsmen watch from the ramp, frustrated with how things just went down.



    Commercial Break




    ***
    VIDEO PACKAGE

    ~~ A FLAIR FOR THE GOLD ~~
    #02 - STARRCADE 1983

    In a bloody affair contested inside a steel cage, Ric Flair defeats the 7-time World Champion Harley Race with a flying cross body to win his second NWA World title.

    END PACKAGE
    ***
     



    Raw returns with KID KASH already in the ring, making his second Raw appearance after an impressive showing in defeat upon his debut from Smackdown last week…

    Jim Ross:
    We’re back live, and Coach, I cant wait for this one!! Kid Kash won over a lot of people last week with his showing despite a defeat against Rey Mysterio and tonight, this fifteen year veteran is back in action - but it’s another tough assignment.

    **AINT NO STOPPIN ME**

    Out to a strong pop, SHELTON BENJAMIN confidently walks down the aisle, slapping hands with fans on his way to the ring - whilst also momentarily looking over his shoulder after weeks of attacks from Mark Henry.

    The Coach:
    It sure is, but Kid Kash showed me a lot last week. And with Shelton Benjamin no doubt absolutely petrified ahead of his match with Mark Henry coming up at Backlash, Kash could easily take advantage of him if Sheltons mind is elsewhere.

    Jim Ross:
    I don’t know about petrified. Shelton Benjamin is a gamer. And I don’t see any fear or trepidation on his face just six days away from facing the Worlds Strongest Man on Pay Per View.

    Match 1:
    Kid Kash vs. Shelton Benjamin
    Subdued to start with, as both play it safe, sticking to a mat based approach initially. They tussle, going back and forth, but Benjamin - with his superior background - comes out on top of the exchange, forcing Kash to have a rethink on the outside after a hat trick of arm drags from Benjamin, with Raw heading to a commercial break.

    Commercial Break

    And back live, Benjamin is still in charge, wearing Kash down with a side headlock, but the veteran escapes, and looks to quicken the pace - only to find Benjamin every bit his equal in that department too. Shelton sends Kash into the corner, and looks to hit the Stinger Splash - but is met with a running dropkick from Kash out of the corner!!!

    Kash finally finds an opening into the match, and tries to impose himself on the contest, scoring two quick near falls off a side suplex and a leg drop, but Shelton kicks out each time. The veteran contorts Sheltons body with a rarely seen Surfboard, but releases when he shoulders are down almost long enough for a three - and cuts off Benjamin after he escapes, catching the Black Diamond with another dropkick.

    The Notorious K-I-D hoists Shelton up onto the top rope, looking for a side suplex off the top - but Benjamin counters in mid air turning it into a CROSS BODY!!! 1...2...KASH KICKS OUT!!! The two men are slower to their feet this time, but it’s Shelton striking first, knocking Kash down with the Dragon Whip, following that up with a Samoan Drop - but to his credit, Kash kicks out again!!!

    Shelton ducks down off a whip, with Kash kicking him away, then rolling Shelton up for a two, but Benjamin re-establishes the upper hand by catching Kash with a spin kick knocking Kash into the corner, following in with a Stinger Splash at the second time of asking!!! Kash staggers out of the corner, as Benjamin runs through a hat trick of clotheslines, seemingly putting Kash out of action.

    Benjamin goes up top, but Kash hit’s the ropes to crotch Shelton, and meets him up top … WITH A FRANKENSTEINER!!!! Kash gets a big reaction for the move, and covers for a big win … 1...2...KICK OUT!!!!! Benjamin just kicks out, with Kash beside himself - arguing the count with the official, before climbing up top himself … BUT SHELTON NIPS UP!!! Like a flash, Benjamin leaps to the top throwing Kash off!!! Shelton then sizes his groggy opponent up … FOR PAYDIRT!!! 1...2...3!!!!!
    Winner: Shelton Benjamin @ 10:10

    Shelton rises to his feet to have his arm raised, but looks down at Kash as he gets up, acknowledging the fight he had to deal with tonight as Kash again proves himself to be a more than able threat on the Raw roster.

    Jim Ross:
    What a damn match!! And a great win in the end for Shelton Benjamin as he gets set for Sunday and the showdown with Mark Henry.

    The Coach:
    This Kid Kash is no joke, J.R!! He very nearly pulled off the upset here.

    Benjamin exit’s the ring, but as he does, he sees the titan tron… where we see a camera shot of a DIAMOND being cut. The shot zooms out…
    … and the sight of MARK HENRY stood alongside Theodore Long inside a factory, beside a diamond cutting device. Boos are heard for the pair, as Teddy pipes up.

    Theodore Long:
    They say diamonds are the hardest natural substance on Gods green earth. Well lemme tell ya - that may well have been true once upon a time … but only until Mark Henry came around!!!

    Heat inside the arena. Long then looks directly into the camera, speaking to Benjamin in the arena.

    Theodore Long:
    Congratulations on your victory tonight, playa. But lemme holla at ya at minute Shelton - let’s get real. At Backlash, you gotta deal wit da toughest, meanest, nastiest, baddest, STRONGEST animal in the WWE jungle - ya better beleie dat!!!

    Henry punches his fist into his palm and grunts.

    Theodore Long:
    This man right here sacrificed his own ambitions because he believed in YOU - just like I did - dat you were the man to lead Tha Brotherhood to the promised land!! And you blew it!! You wasted my time, and ya wasted this man’s time!! Well lemme tell ya - there aint gonna be any more wasted time by either one of us - the only wastin goin on around here will be The Worrrrlds Strongest Man wastin yo ass at Backlash!!! Ya feel me!!??

    Benjamin shakes his head in disagreement in the arena.

    Theodore Long:
    Come Sunday, Mark Henry is gonna bounce your little head around like a basketball and there aint a damn thing ya can do about it!! And when he’s done chewin ya up - he’ll spit ya back out - all the way back to South Carolina or whatever hole it was you came from, playa!!! Because trust me, Shelton - yo ass aint cut out for the mean old world of the WWE - I found dat out the hard way.

    Long takes off his sunglasses, using them to emphasise his point.

    Theodore Long:
    All the time, all the money, all the resources, the effort and the blood, sweat and tears I poured into you were ALL for nothing, when I had the real deal right under my nose the whole time playa!!! I Christened you the ‘Black Diamond’ … but you aint no diamond, Shelton … you are just … another … BUM!!!

    And with that, the camera shot zooms in again on the diamond cutting procedure, sending a firm message to Benjamin in the arena…



    Commercial Break





    ***
    VIDEO PACKAGE

    ~~ A FLAIR FOR THE GOLD ~~
    #07 - EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ

    Flair wins back the title from Sting under suspicious circumstances, with the referee missing Stings foot on the rope during the pin fall.

    END PACKAGE
    ***
     



    And, in the parking lot and limo pulls up, with the driver opening the passenger door … AS RIC FLAIR EMERGES!!!

    Cheers are heard from the fans in the background, as The Nature Boy fixes his cuffs before strolling with style into the building.

    Jim Ross: And there he is!!! The Sixteen Times World Champion is here!! The Nature Boy Ric Flair will come face to face later tonight with John Cena, just six days away from his last EVER title shot in his illustrious career.

    The Coach:
    I wanna know who’s airing these videos?? I don’t care about Ric Flairs title reigns!! I bet the old ego-maniac paid for them himself!!!

    Jim Ross:
    Well, I’d wager it wasn’t Ranjin Singh anyway. Our interim GM couldn’t organise a bun fight in a bakery!!!

    The Coach:
    That’s extremely unfair, J.R. Ranjin Singh is doing an admirable job - it’s a damn sight better than the job you could do as General Manager!!

    Jim Ross:
    I’ve no doubt about that - I don’t want the job, and neither should he. He aint cut out for it, he has no backbone to stand up to people around here!! You know as well as I do that John Cena is manipulating him at every single turn.



    Backstage, the camera catches up with Goldust making his way toward the Gorilla position, as it appears he will be in action momentarily. Looking rather glum, The Bizarre One hears laughing. He turns, seeing his brother (and former tag partner/rival); CODY RHODES and his current tag team partner, KEN DOANE.
    Cody approaches Goldy with a smug grin on his face, as Doane backs him up…

    Cody Rhodes:
    You must regret the decision you made, brother. Choosing that embarrassing drag queen costume over your own flesh and blood?? Really looks like it back fired, doesn’t it??

    Doane laughs.

    Cody Rhodes:
    Look where I am now. Ken and I are *motions with his index finger and thumb* this close to winning the tag team titles. Where’s your partner??

    Ken Doane:
    Yeah, where is he?? I don’t see him!!

    Cody Rhodes:
    Oh … wait. That’s right - he DITCHED you like a bad habit too.

    Goldust puts his head down in sorrow. Cody continues to talk down to his big brother.

    Cody Rhodes:
    You should get the message, Dustin. No one wants you around here anymore.

    Rhodes walks off, shaking his head at his brother, as Doane also walks by, following Cody, but takes a long look at Goldy…

    Ken Doane:
    Freak…

    Doane smirks, and walks off too, as Goldust says nothing, but shakes his head … as his music starts to play in the arena …



    Back into the arena…

    **GOLD LUST**

    Goldust makes his way to the ring for action, looking quite subdued, as J.R and Coach comment on The Bizarre One still being upset at William Regal breaking off their budding team a few weeks ago, and comment on what we just saw transpire between Goldust & Cody…

    Jim Ross: And Goldust will need to refocus his mind because as has seemingly become a weekly tradition this month; he’s about to welcome our latest draft pick from Smackdown!!

    The Coach:
    I hope it’s someone good, J.R!! We need something big on Raw after losing Umaga and Kurt Angle these past two weeks…

    **ROAD TO TEXAS**

    GARRISON CADE is the draft pick, and the big ‘Lone Star’ carries his trusty bull rope to the ring with him, as Goldust hunches in the ring, watching his opponent approach from the ramp…

    Jim Ross:
    Oh boy!! This IS big. This is a hoss!! Garrison Cade - who very nearly WON the WWE Title three nights ago on Smack down - is now the exclusive property of Raw!!!

    The Coach:
    This is what I’m talking about baby boy!!! This is a serious talent!!!

    Jim Ross:
    There’s gonna be some concerned faces in the back following this new arrival!! You wanna talk about shakin things up!!! Garrison Cade is right on the cusp of fulfilling his potential - this kid is just about ready to hit his prime!!!

    Match 2:
    Goldust vs. Garrison Cade
    This doesn’t go well for the Bizarre One. Goldust is essentially a sacrificial lamb for Garrison Cade, and despite bravely fighting the big Texan like a man, Goldust barely gets in any offence outside of defensive punches to try and fight Cade off. The veteran hangs on to survive a few near falls off some big power moves, but the kick outs only add to the punishment, with Cade ruthlessly hammering Goldust in the corner.

    Cade gets ahead of steam, and misses a splash in the corner, giving Goldust a momentary chance of hope, getting a brief flurry of offence which sees him use the iconic Bionic Elbow followed by a running bulldog for his one near fall. Goldy keeps on Cade, running off the ropes … but his momentum is cut short with a big boot from Cade!! The Lone Star puts the finishing touches on Goldust, ending proceedings with the lethal HEART PUNCH for the 1...2...3!!!
    Winner: Garrison Cade @ 02:46

    Cade has his arm raised, but quickly pulls away, not wanting the official anywhere near him, shouting something indistinct toward the camera - but the intensity of the constantly angry Texan is plain to see.

    Jim Ross:
    What an impressive debut for Garrison Cade here on Raw!!

    The Coach:
    Clearly he was still upset over losing that WWE Championship match last week on Smackdown!! But their loss is our gain!!

    Jim Ross:
    But I’m not too sure that many people backstage will see it that way. There’s another huge shark that just got dropped into the ocean here on Raw - and Cade aint here to make up the numbers - that’s for sure.

    Cade departs the ring, walking up the ramp with a purpose…



    Commercial Break



    Back from the commercial, MATT HARDY is already in the ring. Looking serious - as he has for the last few weeks in chasing down CM Punk for retribution after the assault on Greg Helms, - which Punk is prime suspect for - wasting no time, as he holds a mic…

    Matt Hardy: CM Punk!!

    Mixed reaction - but mostly boos - for the mention of the Straight Edge superstar.

    Matt Hardy: You think you’re pretty smart, huh?? Insinuating how innocent you are when everyone knows what you did to Greg Helms. I heard everything you had to say last week. Demanding a shot at this title?? You’ve got some nerve!!! You’ve got NO right to make demands around here!! You don’t demand a shot at the Intercontinental title.

    Hardy takes the belt off his shoulder, and holds it up as he talks about it.

    Matt Hardy:
    Don’t you realise all the work I’ve put into winning this?? Everything I’ve sacrificed to stand here today as champion?? I put my spot at WrestleMania at stake just for a shot at this title. I spent six months last year chasing after this title - I had go through all kinds of obstacles, I faced all sorts of adversity. I EARNED the right to call myself the Intercontinental Champion!!!

    Pop.

    Matt Hardy:
    And now, you just expect me to grant you a shot when you’ve done NOTHING to earn it?? I should point blank say “no” right on the spot. If for nothing else, than to respect the men - the legends - that held this title in the past. Legends that EARNED the right to call themselves Intercontinental Champion.

    Some respectful applause for Hardy.

    Matt Hardy:
    Every fibre in my being is telling me to say “NO” … but even though you haven’t earned it … even though you sure as hell don’t deserve it … I will put this title on the line at Backlash if it means getting my hands on your punk ass, and getting some revenge for Greg.

    Hardy fixes the belt back on his shoulder, and turns to face the ramp.

    Matt Hardy: You’ve got your shot, Punk. Now, how about you grow a set and be a man for once - and get yo-

    **THIS FIRE BURNS**

    There’s initial confusion all around, as no one recognises the theme … but CM Punk soon emerges (it had been ‘Miseria Cantare’ in the thread until now, and as much as I love ‘Cult of Personality’ the time isn’t right for that theme) and is given the heat he deserves from the fans.

    Punk stays at the top of the ramp, always smiling, whilst Matt motions for him to get to the ring. The music eventually dies down, with Punk looking up at the titan tron, pointing up at it as he begins to speak…

    CM Punk: How d’ya like my new music?? Thought it was time for a fresh start. Kinda similar to me ditching the tag team titles and getting my hands on the Intercontinental title this Sunday.

    Heat. Punk laughs and slaps his own leg as he laughs.

    Matt Hardy:
    You got what you wanted, Punk. You’ve got no more excuses. How about you face me like a man and quit your running!!

    CM Punk:
    Excellent offer, Matthew … think I’ll pass, tonight.

    More heat. Punk addresses the fans innocently.

    CM Punk:
    What?? I have nothing to gain by fighting Matt Hardy tonight. Unlike you, Matt, I’m calculated. I’m-

    Matt Hardy:
    You’re a pussy!!!

    Pop. Again, Punk responds by smiling - he knows he’s got Hardy wound up.

    CM Punk:
    Call it what you want, either way, I’m the one with a smile on my face, and you’re the one that’s about to give yourself an aneurysm. I’m not gonna fight you tonight, Matt. I’ve got a shot at one of the most prestigious championships on the planet to prepare for and I’m not gonna risk my wellbeing by engaging in a barbaric fist fight with you here tonight.

    Boos. Punk takes a moment, with his smile dropping, before he speaks again.

    CM Punk:
    As a matter of fact, Matt … I’m worried.

    Matt Hardy:
    You should be.

    CM Punk:
    *Chuckling* … I know.

    Hardy looks angered, with Punk not looking concerned about the threat at all.

    CM Punk:
    What I’m worried about is you being unable to keep a lid on your emotions this Sunday. And I think the last thing you, I, or these fans would want is for you to lose your composure and get yourself disqualified. I mean, that’s a pretty weak way to retain your title, right?? Think about the men you represent when you defend the Intercontinental title. All of that history, the legacy … you don’t wanna tarnish that legacy by retaining the title through a disqualification, do you??

    Matt rolls his eyes, seeing right through the bullshit from Punk.

    CM Punk:
    I mean, what would Bret Hart think about that?? Or Ricky Steamboat!! I know Davey Boy would be spinnin in his grave at that thought!! Randy Savage, Curt Hennig and Pat Patterson would all be disgusted to see that happen. Even Shawn Michaels - being the “saint” he is - wouldn’t be best pleased with you, Matt.

    For once, Matt cracks a smile as he responds.

    Matt Hardy:
    Hey, if you want this to be No Disqualification, that’s fine by me!!

    Punk laughs uncontrollably, for a little too long … and the fans boo the insincere laughter. He eventually stops, and stops smiling altogether.

    CM Punk:
    No. No, you moron. I don’t want a No Disqualification match. I want the opposite - I don’t want you escaping Backlash with that title if you cant keep your emotions in check - I want that little championship advantage of yours to be eliminated.

    Heat.

    CM Punk:
    You get disqualified?? You lose the title. You get counted out?? You lose the title.

    More boos. Hardy shakes his head.

    Matt Hardy:
    You’re outta your mind, Punk. You’re lucky to be getting this title shot in the first place!!

    CM Punk:
    Yet, here I am. You want me to fight you, and I want what you got. I’m willing to fight you, but only on my terms.

    Hardy looks around, frustrated with Punk. He takes a few moments to think, before throwing his arms up in the air.

    Matt Hardy:
    You know what?? Screw it, if that what it takes to get you in the ring?? You’re on. First, I’ll beat your ass and retain my title - and THEN I’ll give you the beating you deserve for what you did to Greg Helms!!!

    The fans cheer for the fiery promo from Matt, but Punk feigns ignorance.

    CM Punk:
    Greg Helms?? My conscience is clear. You got the wrong guy there.

    Matt Hardy:
    I know it was you, ya son of bitch!!

    CM Punk:
    Prove it.

    No response. Hardy thinks about talking, but pulls the mic away, mouthing something back at Punk as he tries to keep a lid on his anger. Punk - again - smiles.

    CM Punk:
    Oh … that’s right, you cant. Aint that unfortunate. I’ll see you on Sunday, Matt. Make sure that title is shined up nice and good. I want it spotless. And who knows … maybe when I win, I’ll dedicate the victory to my old tag team partner …

    Punk then leaves, leaving Matt to stew in the ring, glaring up the ramp, having to wait another six days to get a piece of Punk.

    Jim Ross:
    There ya have it, folks. Matt Hardy will put the Intercontinental title on the line this Sunday at Backlash, in order to get his hands on CM Punk, but has Matt Hardy made a mistake?? Has Matt allowed his emotions to get the better of him in accepting this match under ALL of Punks conditions??

    The Coach:
    Of course he has!! Once again, Matt Hardy uses his heart instead of his pea-sized brain. And it’s gonna cost him BIG this Sunday. He’s been played like a fiddle by CM Punk. He’s like a puppet on a string. Well - the wires are gonna be clipped on Sunday, and Matt can only blame himself.

    Jim Ross:
    I’ve gotta wonder if this will all come back to haunt the champion. He has allowed CM Punk to get in his head and dictate the terms. And lets not forget - CM Punk is the challenger here. He didn’t earn the shot, he demanded it. And if we had a General Manager worth a damn right now, they would’ve stepped in and made the decision for Matt and prevented this from happening.

    The Coach:
    These are grown men, J.R!! This isn’t elementary school. Ranjin Singh likes to give his talent the latitude to work things out themselves.

    Jim Ross:
    He just doesn’t give a damn, Coach!! And here’s another case in point; Gail Kim, a week ago, agreed to defend the Womens title against Beth Phoenix … yet Singh STILL hasn’t signed off on it!! However, those two women will be in action in just a few moments; tag team action that is. Gail Kim will team up with Candice Michelle to face Phoenix and Katie Lea Burchill.

    The Coach:
    He’s a busy man, J.R. I’m sure there’s a good reason for it.

    Jim Ross:
    Too busy to make a match?? That IS his job!!!

    Coach & J.R bicker, as Raw fades out to a commercial…



    Commercial Break



    Match 3:
    Gail Kim & Candice Michelle vs. Beth Phoenix & Katie Lea Burchill
    Candice & Katie Lea start the match disappointingly, with the only real interest being in Gail and Beth. Gail and Candice work well in the early going, getting the upper hand on Katie Lea (as we’re informed on commentary that Paul Burchill was barred from ringside by the official during the commercial), but the Brit survives the early going, and drops Candice with a dropkick before tagging Beth.

    And Beth makes it clear right away where her interest lies by PRESS SLAMMING Candice toward Gail, and refuses to follow up, telling Gail to tag in, wanting a piece of the Womens Champion. Not one to duck a challenge, the fighting champion makes the tag from Candice, and we get the showdown everyone wants to see. The two leading women tussle, but Beth proves to be too strong for Gail, overpowering the champion.
    Gail is forced to use her speed in order to compete, and takes Beth off her feet with a head scissors, then rattles off a series of arm drags, before scoring a near fall off a dropkick. The champion continues to use her speed, and gets the fans interest level increased with some high flying, but a tilt-a-whirl turns nasty, as Phoenix turns it into a backbreaker.

    Beth ignores her partners calls for a tag, wanting to send a message to the champion by herself, but Katie involves herself - obviously wanting to make her own impression against the champ - by making a blind tag off Phoenix. Beth stews on the apron as Katie takes over, but soon tags herself back in … and THROWS Katie out of the ring to keep her out of the way. Beth clubs Gail to wear her down, and sends her off the ropes … but Gail returns with the FLYING DRAGON!!!

    Beth is in trouble, and it’s hard to tell how she can escape the submission attempt … but before she can, Katie Lea breaks the submission for her!! Candice then comes in and storms toward Katie, but gets back dropped out over the top rope. Katie looks to attack Gail, but the champion catches her out of nowhere with EAT DEFEAT!!! Gail gets up, but Beth is right behind her … PHOENIX RISING TO GAIL!!! 1...2...3!!!!!
    Winners: Beth Phoenix & Katie-Lea Burchill @ 04:18

    The Glamazon PINS the champion!!!!! Beth Phoenix stands right back up to have her arm raised, and motions around her waist for the title, before standing over Gail, most likely telling her the same.

    Jim Ross:
    If she wasn’t already a worthy challenger, Beth Phoenix just put an exclamation point on her resume!! A pinfall victory over the Womens Champion tonight. And surely, Coach, surely now, we’ll see The Glamazon face Gail Kim for the Womens title??

    The Coach:
    If we do, I think, based on that evidence, we’ll see a new champion crowned, baby boy. Beth Phoenix would be a scary proposition for most of the men on the roster. Did you see how she man handled Candice??

    Jim Ross:
    I sure did. Beth Phoenix aint no joke. Already a former champion, Beth Phoenix is hell bent on getting the title back around her waist.

    Phoenix again motions for the title, before she prepares to leave the ring, but as she climbs out onto the apron…

    **MOVE IT UP**

    Another unfamiliar theme - this time it’s MICHELLE MCCOOL; drafted to Raw last week as part of a package with her team; Americas Most Wanted. Beth looks surprised to see her - and a little anxious too.

    Michelle McCool:
    Well done Beth!! Go you!!!

    McCool condescendingly applauds Beth, who is unimpressed.

    Michelle McCool:
    Y’know something, I think you have earned your shot at the Womens Championship. And I’ve been talkin a little earlier with Mr. Singh … an’ he told me that you WILL face Gail Kim for the title this Sunday at Backlash!! Aint that great??

    Still, McCool speaks in that condescending manner. Beth nods at the announcement, but she isn’t stupid - she’s expecting a ‘but’ …

    Michelle McCool:
    An better yet - I’M getting a shot too!!!

    Smattering of heat. Beth is apoplectic at the announcement.

    Michelle McCool:
    That’s riiiiight … it’ll be a triple threat match!!! So don’t you go- whoa. Wait. Don’t-

    Phoenix comes STORMING up the ramp, looking to take her fury out on someone, and McCool quickly high tails it, dropping the mic, and getting out of dodge, wanting NO part of the Glamazon.

    Jim Ross:
    What the hell is that about?? Michelle McCool?? No disrespect to the young woman, but has she ever wrestled a singles match?? As far as I can recall, she’s been by the side of Americas Most Wanted on Smackdown all this time. What exactly has she done to earn a shot at the Womens title??

    The Coach:
    I’m not gonna start questioning Ranjin Singh, J.R. He must have his reasons.

    Jim Ross:
    Michelle McCool must have some tremendous powers of persuasion to worm her way into a Womens title match on the back of NO performances. First it was Layla El last week, and now this. No wonder Beth Phoenix is in a fit here.

    The Coach:
    I don’t know what her problem is, she’s got a shot too, hasn’t she??

    Jim Ross:
    Yeah, in a match where she doesn’t have to be involved in order to lose. And what about the champion?? This isn’t good for Gail Kim either, and for the same reasons!! Beth Phoenix is enough to handle - now she’s got to deal with another “worthy” challenger??

    In the ring, Gail picks herself up, looking worse for wear, now knowing she has TWO challengers after her title this Sunday…



    In the backstage area, we see the grinning Hardcore Champion THE MIZ, strolling confidently, admiring the title over his shoulder as he wheels his trolley full of weapons … with the caption at the bottom of the screen; “NEXT…”



    Commercial Break





    ***
    VIDEO PACKAGE

    ~~ A FLAIR FOR THE GOLD ~~
    #13 - SUPERBRAWL 1996

    Once again, inside a steel cage, Ric Flair wins gold, pinning Randy Savage after waffling him with a shoe.

    END PACKAGE
    ***




    Back into the arena and THE MIZ is in the ring, amidst boos from the fans - and briefly, we see that Miz is wearing a black armband that reads “KENNEDY” … clearly in support of his recently fired mentor…

    The Miz:
    Gather round children … because THIS … IS THE TRUUUUUE STORY of when The Miz opened up the doors to MIZNEYWORLD and gave youth a chance!!

    Miz looks for a cheer … and gets a smattering of boos.

    The Miz:
    That’s right, my Barely Legal Hardcore Invitational has been the talk around ALL the water coolers all around the country and beyond!! It’s the only thing the kids can talk about right now - and young hopefuls all over the country are lining up for a shot at immortality!!

    {They’re lining up to punch this idiot in the mouth!} - Jim Ross

    The Miz:
    Well Louisville, the highlight of your night is finally here - HOO-RAH!!!!

    He holds the mic out, wanting a “Hoo-rah” back … but gets more boos. He continues on, unaffected.

    The Miz:
    Because it’s time for the Barely Legal Hardcore Invitational!!!!

    {That sounds wrong on a number of levels} - Jim Ross
    {Get your filthy mind out of the gutter, you old pervert} - The Coach

    The Miz: Here are the rules; you cannot have been sports-entertaining for more than a year, you cannot have any prior mainstream exposure, (motions to his waist level) you have to be this high to compete, and you cannot have a WWE contract.

    {He’s really pushing the boat out. Must be tryin to reel in some real big fish with these restrictions} - Jim Ross, dripping in sarcasm.

    The Miz: So … the question is Louisville … WHO … IS … TOUGH ENOUGH to ride Miz-Mountain?? BECAUSE … I’M THE MIZ … AND I’M … HARD-CORRRRE!!!!

    No music plays, as a skinny wrestler in tights with no shirt timidly makes his way down the ramp, offering a meek wave to the fans…

    The Miz:
    Come on, we don’t have all day … live TV here, kid.

    Miz taps his wrist (imaginary watch) and beckons the opponent to hurry it up, with the jobber jogging to the ring. He climbs into the ring, taking a few deep breaths, but smiles, looking excited for his big chance. Miz though, sees it a little differently…

    The Miz: Don’t be nervous young man, I can understand you’re a little star-struck right now, standing in the ring with a Living Legend.

    The challenger scoffs slightly at the suggestion, but Miz takes no notice.

    The Miz:
    But, I assure you, I’m really just a normal, down to earth guy like you and like these people. The only difference being that I’m infinitely more successful than you or these people could ever imagine.

    Heat. Miz is oblivious.

    The Miz:
    But apart from my summer residence in Monte Carlo and the A-List parties I attend on a weekly basis, you and I?? We’re not THAT much different.

    Insincerely, Miz smiles at the jobber.

    The Miz:
    So, please, tell us your name and where you‘re from. Now, speak clearly so everyone can hear you.

    The jobber leans in at the mic…

    Jobber:
    Uh, my name is Chuck Taylor, and I’m from Murray, RIGHT HERE IN KENTUCKY!!

    Cheap pop. Taylor looks pumped by the reaction, and takes the mic from Miz - and Miz looks offended.

    Chuck Taylor:
    WHAT’S UP KENTU-

    Miz rips the microphone away from him!!

    The Miz:
    Okay, that’s enough from you, we don’t need your life story.

    Lots of heat for Miz after ripping the mic away. Miz looks at the camera, rolling his eyes.

    The Miz:
    Never work with amateurs.

    Miz turns back around, walking toward Taylor.

    The Miz:
    Now, this is how it’ll work. The bell will ring, and you and I will-

    CHUCK TAYLOR COLD COCKS MIZ!!!!

    The fans pop, with Miz seemingly knocked out cold, and Taylor frantically moves around the ring, not sure what to do, as he calls for the referee to get in and ring the bell, which he does…

    Match 4 | THE MIZ BARELY LEGAL HARDCORE INVITATIONAL:
    The Miz vs. Chuck Taylor
    Taylor immediately goes for the cover, 1...2...MIZ JUST KICKS OUT!!! Taylor quickly tries to keep on him, and rolls out, grabbing objects from Miz’s trolley of weapons and tossing them into the ring, (trash cans, trash can lids, STOP sign, tennis racket and a Croquet racket) and grabs the two trash can lids - proceeding to whack them repeatedly over the head of the recovering Miz!!! He covers again, 1...2...NO!!!

    Next, the jobber picks up the Tennis racket (to a HUGE pop in Louisville for the object Jim Cornette made famous) and plays to the fans, before swinging at The Miz, but Miz ducks, and then cuts off Taylors momentum by smashing him with the STOP sign!!! Taylor drops the racket, and Miz picks up his Croquet stick, driving it into the gut of the jobber, then places trashcan over the head of his opponent, before dropkicking him into the corner!!!

    Miz then carefully places the racket back into the trolley, shouting out; “It‘s not a toy, I need that for the weekend!!” Miz then proceeds to beat up on Taylor a little more, hitting his trademark corner clothesline spot, before riling the fans with the Tennis Racket … waiting for Taylor to get up, and as he does, Miz mocks a serve in tennis, and smashes the jobber over the head with the weapon!!! He covers, 1...2...3!!!
    Winner: The Miz @ 02:48

    Miz has his hand raised, and poses with the Tennis racket, much to the dismay of the fans. He plays the racket like a guitar, before dropping it once he is presented with the tattered Hardcore title.


    Jim Ross: There’ll be a man in Louisville tonight that’ll be havin a fit of rage, I can tell ya that much, Coach. Anyone other than Jim Cornette using a Tennis Racket in this town aint gonna be popular!!

    The Coach:
    The Miz uses that racket better than Jim Cornette ever could!!

    Jim Ross:
    I know who I’d pick in a fight, that’s for sure.

    The Coach:
    So do I…



    In the backstage area, we see the grinning ARMANDO ALEJANDRO ESTRADA leading the Samoan Bulldozer, UMAGA …

    Jim Ross:
    Back to important, serious business. It looks like we will be joined here momentarily by Armando Estrada and his Samoan Bulldozer, Umaga!! What does Estrada have to say, just six days away from a showdown between Umaga and Christian at Backlash?? We’ll find out - NEXT!!!



    Commercial Break




    ***
    VIDEO PACKAGE

    Clips of John Cena - the OLD John Cena, happy, smiling, colourful shirts, playing to the fans…

    John Cena:
    That guy’s gone.

    Cut to Cena attacking Christian at Saturday Nights Main Event … and applying the STFU to William Regal a few weeks ago…

    John Cena: And now, you all have to live with the consequences - because it’s not just Christian that forced the REAL John Cena to step outta the shadows … YOU PEOPLE asked for it too.

    Shots of fans with anti-Cena signs, giving thumbs down etc.

    John Cena: You people despised me because I had the balls to not only chase my dream - BUT SUCCEED!!! YOU DESPISED ME BECAUSE I WENT OUT AND ACHIEVED WHAT YOU COULDN’T!!!

    Multiple shots of Cena winning each of his four World titles.

    John Cena: Be careful what you wish for. You wanted John Cena to show his true colours?? Well, here I am. The nice guy?? He’s dead and gone.

    More clips of Cena busting Christian up at Saturday Nights Main Event, and his new demeanour…

    John Cena: Say hello to John Cena. The REAL John Cena … you all brought this BACKLASH on … now you gotta deal with it.

    And end on a shot of a stony faced Cena…


    WWE BACKLASH | APRIL 27 2008 | KANSAS CITY, MO
    ONLY ON PAY PER VIEW
    ***
    *BANNER CREDIT; OBEY*



    Back from the commercial…

    **VIRTUAL VOODOO**

    Armando Estrada leads Umaga down the aisle, with a little swagger in his step, letting out a chuckle as he points at a particular member of the audience…

    Jim Ross:
    He is officially no longer part of Monday Night Raw as a result of the ongoing draft this month, but Umaga WILL still take on Christian this Sunday before departing for Friday night Smackdown.

    The Coach:
    And we’ll all be sorry to see him go. Smackdown has picked up a HUGE gain with the Samoan Bulldozer, baby boy.

    Jim Ross:
    They most certainly have, but I certainly wont be shedding any tears over the loss of Armando Estrada. And, he has the opportunity to leave Raw this Sunday with a huge win against the first man ever to defeat him - that being Christian of course.

    The Coach:
    But that wasn’t “No Holds Barred”, old timer. This Sunday, it is. And that can only help Umaga…

    {/SECOND HOUR}

    Estrada stands in the ring, waiting out some heat from the fans, before speaking up…

    Armando Estrada:
    Todos, escuchame, everybody listen … HA HA … TO ME!! … MY NAME … ES … ARMANDOOOO ALEJANDRROOOO ESTRRRRRRRADA!!!

    Heat.

    {We know your damn name, Armando!!} - Jim Ross

    Armando Estrada:
    For de last {counts with his fingers} … EIGHT months … dat good for nothing coward - CHRISTIAN - has bragged - NON-STOP - about how he was de one to finally beat my Samoan Bulldozer. De first man to defeat the unbeatable monster. And for eight long months since … that PUTO has avoided de Samoan Bulldozer LIKE A PLAGUE!!!

    Estrada affords himself a knowing smirk, as he wags his finger.

    Armando Estrada:
    Because Christian - ha - he isn’t a dummy. He is well aware dat he could never repeat dat trick and he has ran and ran like de DOG he is. Ju all know it too!! Ju ALL saw what happened in de rematch at Nemesis in October. Christian remembers too … he remembers dat de only thing that saved him dat night was a FREAK … -- como se dic -- ACT OF GOD!!!

    AAE looks down, pointing at the canvas.

    Armando Estrada:
    De ring collapsed and dat … *makes a chicken sound* … has done everything in his power to stay away from dis MONSTER.

    Boos.

    Armando Estrada:
    Christian?? Mi amigo, ha ha, I don’t blame JU for wanting none of de Samoan Bulldozer. But pero, dat, dat … FLUKE … at Summerslam, has eaten at MY soul, and it has eaten at HIS soul!!!

    Estrada points at Umaga.

    Armando Estrada:
    Dat loss at Summerslam created doubt where NONE was needed. Dat loss at Summerslam is why Umaga didn’t defeat de Deadman at WrestleMania. JU are de reason Umaga now has TWO losses!! Dere aren’t two men on de face of dis earth dat should be able to defeat de Bulldozer. NONE!!

    On cue, Umaga roars defiantly, with AAE nodding - impressed with his Bulldozer.

    Armando Estrada:
    So … after WrestleMania, I decided dat in order for Umaga to be the unstoppable force he was before Summer slam … dat he needed to get back in de ring with de FOOL who ended his dominance in de first place. So before we depart for newer pastures, there’s -- como se dic - LOOSE ENDS to tie up!!

    Estrada smiles.

    Armando Estrada:
    Senor Singh has kindly arranged for de match dis Sunday to be contested with NO holds barred - ha ha!! Which means ju don’t get so lucky!! Ju don’t get to fall out of de ring after de Samoan Spike like ju did at Summerslam. And ju don’t get to escape on a technicality if de ring explodes!! No, no, no, mi amigo … at Backlash, ju will get just dat from dis force of nature … a severe backlash.

    Armando rips off his sunglasses, with the shit eating grin turning into a fierce scowl.

    Armando Estrada:
    And at Backlash … ju, Christian, JU … will finally feel de TRUE force of de SAAAAAAA-MO-AN BULLLLDOZZZERRRRRR … OOOOOOOO-MA-GAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!

    The music hits again, and Estrada orders his monster out of the ring, with Umaga obeying the demands of his master. On the way up the ramp, J.R and Coach discuss the match coming up at Backlash, as we see Estrada talk at Umaga the entire way up the aisle…



    Commercial Break




    ***
    VIDEO PACKAGE

    ~~ A FLAIR FOR THE GOLD ~~
    #08 - ROYAL RUMBLE 1992

    Entering the match at #3, Flair goes through a gruelling marathon run spanning close to sixty minutes, outlasting 29 other WWE Superstars to claim the vacant championship.

    END PACKAGE
    ***



    Match 5:
    The Angels of Anarchy vs. Americas Most Wanted
    It’s the Raw in-ring debut of the former four time WWE Tag Team Champions over on Smackdown, with AMW taking on Daniels and Williams in a spirited, but short, tag team affair. Throughout the match, J.R and Coach discuss the scramble currently on-going within the tag division for a shot at the gold with a vast array of teams all claiming to be the rightful #1 Contenders.

    AMW use plenty of heel tactics to keep hold of the upper hand during the match, working over Doug Williams, keeping Christopher Daniels frustrated on the apron, wanting the tag. Eventually, Williams fights Harris and Storm off long enough to bring Daniels in, and instantly, The Fallen Angel picks up the pace. With Daniels being the fresh man, Harris and Storm are both taken down, with it looking like the Angels of Anarchy could knock off the former WWE Tag champs.

    Williams and Daniels execute TOTAL ELIMINATION on Storm, but Harris drags the referee out of the ring before he can count to three. With that, Daniels launches himself to the outside onto the Wildcat - but misses!!! Harris avoids Daniels, and re-enters the ring, only to eat a dropkick from the Brit!! Williams goes up top for BOMBS AWAY - but Storm drags Harris to safety!!! Williams is kicked out, as Daniels emerges … but he is easy prey for the DEATH SENTENCE … 1...2...3!!!!!
    Winners: Americas Most Wanted @ 05:16

    Harris and Storms superior tactics see them overcome the perennial bridesmaids and instantly put themselves right in the mix for a shot at the tag team titles.

    Jim Ross:
    This tag team title picture just gets muddier by the week!! Americas Most Wanted now have surely jumped right into contention with this win!!

    The Coach:
    Amen to that, old timer. Harris and Storm are quickly becoming my favourite team around here!!

    Jim Ross:
    There’s quite a logjam at the top of the division, that’s for sure. And I’m not convinced our esteemed Interim GM is gonna be up to the task to clear it!!

    The Coach:
    Ye of little faith, baby boy - ye of little faith…

    Jim Ross:
    Well, we’ll see. AMW are right in the hunt - along with just about everyone else right now - but shifting gears a little … let’s now head backstage, where our latest arrival from Smackdown is standing by; our newest broadcast colleague - take it away, Tiffany…

    Cut backstage to Tiffany…

    Tiffany:
    Hi guys!! It’s great to be here on Raw!! And right now, I’m with Christian!!

    The fans pop, as Christian steps into view, arms folded, looking very tense.

    Christian:
    Hey Tiffany, welcome to Raw.

    Christian feigns a smile, but continues on, explaining his subdued attitude.

    Christian:
    Excuse me if I’m not rolling out the red carpet and being my jovial self … now just isn’t the time and place, y’know??

    Tiffany nods and smiles.

    Tiffany:
    Absolutely. And speaking of what you’ve had to deal with lately - it’s been a testing period for you. First, the ordeal at Saturday Nights Main Event with John Cena savagely assaulting you when you were left defenceless in handcuffs, and then WrestleMania-

    Christian cuts Tiffany off.

    Christian:
    I already feel pretty rough right now, Tiffany. I know what I’ve been through lately - I lived it. Everyone in this arena and everyone watching at home knows what I’ve been through - but I’m still here.

    Pop from the fans in the arena.

    Christian:
    And I’m still standing. And John Cena is well aware that I’m not goin anywhere. And just because he’s got Ranjin Singh in his pocket, he thinks he can keep me at a safe distance … keep me occupied.

    Christian momentarily excuses himself, and turns away from Tiffany - looking directly to the camera…

    Christian:
    I’m not going away John. Sooner or later, you will have to deal with me again.

    Captain Charisma glares at the camera for a prolonged period, before turning back to Tiffany and offering an apologetic smile before continuing.

    Christian:
    So let’s not go back and relive the last few months. Because yeah, I’ve been through a lot … but I cant stand here and talk about what I’d like to do to John Cena - because I’ve got more urgent business on my agenda - and as much as I’ve already had to deal with recently … I’m gonna go through a hell of a lot more this Sunday at Backlash.

    Tiffany:
    The No Holds Barred match with Umaga??

    Christian:
    Yeah, that. A nice, lazy Sunday, huh??

    Christian rolls his eyes at his own comment, before turning and sending a message - looking directly to the camera.

    Christian:
    Armando Estrada - I heard everything you had to say earlier. And it’s funny you should talk about tying up loose ends before you move off to Smackdown - because it seems I’ve a few loose ends of my own to tie up. I thought we were done. I mean, I did beat that Samoan Bulldozer of yours in front of ninety thousand fans at Wembley Stadium at Summerslam, didn’t I??

    Christian pauses for a second, and turns to Tiffany, giving one moment of light relief;

    Christian:
    Not that I like to mention it…

    He pauses again for a few seconds, then motions with his index finger and thumb as if to say “just a little”. Christian then turns to the camera again-

    Christian:
    As for Nemesis?? Sure, fortune was on my side that night - but don’t you dare try and take away from the fact that I was the man that put Umaga DOWN for the first time - ME … no one else. And there was no luck about it. Umaga didn’t slip on a banana skin, he didn’t knock himself out, there was no fast count, and I didn’t pull the tights or get my feet on the ropes - I PUT your bulldozer down - 1...2...3, in the middle of the ring.

    Pop.

    Christian:
    But it seems like you don’t quite remember it like I do … so I guess I’ll have to do it all over again, this Sunday at Backlash!!!! And just like Summerslam - it’ll have nothing to do with luck.

    Another pop. Christian then steps back, and talks to Tiffany again…

    Christian:
    See Tiffany, there’s a roadblock on my path back to getting my hands on John Cena and the World Heavyweight Championship. And one way or another - I plan on BULLDOZING right through it at Backlash!!!

    Christian pauses for a second, nodding at Tiffany.

    Christian:
    And that?? THAT’S … how I roll.

    He pounds his chest, and backs out of the picture, as Tiffany watches, smiling as Christian leaves.



    Commercial Break





    **VIDEO PACKAGE**


    Clip of Bret Hart rolling up Bam Bam Bigelow to win the King of the Ring tournament in 1993.

    “I‘M THE BEST THERE IS, THE BEST THERE WAS, AND THE BEST THERE EVER WILL BE”

    Narrator: It has given the platform for champions to establish themselves.

    Clip of Owen Hart being crowned King of the Ring in 1994, as we hear him yell over it.

    “I‘M THE KING OF HARTS!!!”

    Narrator: It has immortalized greats forever.

    Clip of Stone Cold Steve Austin winning the 1996 King of the Ring tournament, with the sound bite over it.

    “AUSTIN THREE SIXTEEN SAYS, I JUST WHIPPED YOUR ASS”

    Narrator: It ushered in the birth of a new attitude.

    Clip of Triple H having his hand raised in 1997.

    “THE KING OF THE RING!!!”

    Narrator: Stars have been born.

    Clip of Kurt Angle dropping to his knees in victory in 2000.

    “IT‘S TRUE, IT‘S TRUE”

    Narrator: Legends have been made.


    Clip of Brock Lesnar having his hand raised in 2002, as we hear Paul Heymans voice over the top.

    “THE NEXT BIG THING, BRRRRROCK LLLLLESNARRRRR”

    Narrator: Careers have skyrocketed.

    Clips of Mister Kennedy with the crown in 2006, Edge with his trophy in 2001 and Brent Albright a year ago, over a sound bite of Brent during his victory speech…

    “NOW THAT I’M KING OF THE RING, YOU PEOPLE ARE GONNA SIT UP AND NOTICE WHAT I’M CAPABLE OF!!”

    Narrator: The King of the Ring tournament has provided some of the most memorable moments in sports entertainment history, and on Saturday, June 23, 2008 … a new King will be crowned, in the home of royalty…

    Clips of London, Buckingham Palace, Beefeaters etc…

    Narrator: Once again, the King of the Ring tournament climaxes on NBC, with quarter finals, semi finals and the grand final. One rising star will eclipse all others…

    Quick clips again of the prominent former winners.

    Narrator: Which superstar will use the King of the Ring tournament to follow these legends, icons and immortals into the pantheon of greatness??

    ~ THE 2008 KING OF THE RING TOURNAMENT ~
    !! LIVE ON SATURDAY NIGHTS MAIN EVENT ON NBC !!
    JUNE 2008 | O2 ARENA, LONDON, ENGLAND
    ***



    Raw returns - into the office of the Interim General Manager; Ranjin Singh. In the office, Vladimir stands by the GM, as the room looks awfully crowded with bickering tag teams - CODY RHODES & KEN DONE, AMERICAS MOST WANTED (with Michelle McCool), THE HART LEGACY (with Natalya) and THE ANGELS OF ANARCHY.

    Ranjin Singh: Thank you all for coming-

    All eight men (and the two women) continue to bicker, with Singh not being heard over them. Singh coughs, but still cant be heard. The Interim GM looks up at Vladimir, with the bodyguard understanding the signal. Vladimir pounds the desk - HARD.

    Vladimir: SHUT!!!

    The four teams simmer down, allowing Singh to finally get a word in.

    Ranjin Singh: Thank you Vladimir. I’ve gathered you all here because I’m aware there’s quite the dispute over who the rightful number one contenders are here-

    Cody Rhodes:
    There’s no dispute, Mister Singh, Ken and I beat *points at the Hart Legacy* these two last week-

    Harry Smith:
    Yeah, you cheated!!

    Cody Rhodes:
    We won, that’s what mattered-

    James Storm speaks up to make the argument for AMW.

    James Storm:
    Hey, just saying - there was no dispute over our win tonight, boss. And may I say, that’s a lovely tie.

    Christopher Daniels:
    No dispute?? How about that long streak of piss dragging the referee outta the ring when WE had the match won!!

    Singh tries to bring some order.

    Ranjin Singh:
    Gentlemen please-

    But the bickering duos ignore him.

    Chris Harris:
    I thought he was having a seizure.

    Doug Williams:
    I’m gonna give you a seizure, big fella.

    Williams steps forward threateningly, as Harris takes a step back, behind McCool. Daniels then leans on the desk to make his point.

    Christopher Daniels:
    Hey, Ranjin - look - we’re still head and shoulders above these guys. We’ve been so close before. I guarantee - we get the next shot, we-

    Natalya pushes in next to Daniels to speak to the GM.

    Natalya:
    Yeah, you’ve been close before - you had your chance. Harry and Tyson?? We haven’t had one.

    Christopher Daniels:
    There’s a good reason for that, sweetheart.

    Natalya looks taken aback by the comment.

    Natalya:
    Excuse me??

    Michelle McCool pipes up, speaking before Daniels can respond to Natalya.

    Michelle McCool:
    He’s right - I mean, with all due respect, you’ve got the greatest tag team champions of all time here, Mister Singh. These other teams don’t really deserve to breathe the same air.

    Ranjin Singh:
    Well, that’s what I-

    Again, Singh is talked over…

    Tyson Kidd: That’s funny, because I remember the three of us, beating the three of you at WrestleMania.

    James Storm:
    That was on the pre-show. Didn’t count.

    Ken Doane:
    I agree. That counts for nothing. And neither does what you two have done - in the past - because Cody and I are the future. We’ve earned that shot.

    Williams steps forward, pointing at Cody & Doane.

    Doug Williams:
    Put us in the ring with these two dweebs right now and we’ll see who’s the future.

    Harry Smith:
    And the winners can face US after we get our title shot.

    Singh prods Vladimir, who slams the desk again.

    Vladimir:
    SHUT!!!!!

    Singh nods at the bodyguard, before calmly speaking up again.

    Ranjin Singh:
    You’ve all made your points, and honestly, I don’t know who’s right. I’ve a lot of things to deal with around here. So on the Backlash pre-show, all four of you are going to compete for a future title shot. How does that sound??

    Tyson Kidd:
    Pre-show?? Hey Cowboy, will this count??

    Storm shoots a glare at the wise-ass comment from Kidd.

    Chris Harris:
    If we win, it will.

    Again, the discussion descends into farce, with the entire room arguing - until BETH PHOENIX storms into the room, making a beeline for the General Manager, (with McCool looking for cover behind Harris and Storm) REACHING over the desk and grabbing Singh by his jacket!!!

    Beth Phoenix:
    Are you TRYING to screw me over??

    Vladimir steps in, but Beth shouts at the Russian “GET OFF ME!!” and shoves him forcefully before backing off. Singh gathers himself, nervously responding to Beth.

    Ranjin Singh:
    No, of course not. Don’t you have a title match this Sunday, Beth??

    Beth Phoenix:
    Yeah - in a damn TRIPLE THREAT MATCH!!! Where’s my one on one shot?? What exactly do I have to do around here to get a one on one shot at Gail Kim?? It seems every hussy that flutters her eyelashes at you around here gets a shot - but not me??

    Noticeably, Natalya looks offended by what she’s hearing…

    Ranjin Singh:
    I have no idea what you’re insinuating-

    Beth Phoenix:
    Layla El?? Couldn’t buy a win on Smackdown - comes to Raw and POOF - just like magic, SHE gets a shot?? And now that other tramp shows up-

    McCool takes exception to that comment and comes out of hiding.

    Michelle McCool:
    Excuse me?? I’m no-

    Beth shoots a glare at McCool and she immediately goes back into hiding, fearing the unhinged Glamazon. Beth turns her focus back at Singh.

    Beth Phoenix:
    Hell, I cant even get a FIVE MINUTE MEETING with you!!! You wont let me in here with this guy standing guard!! But it seems all these pretty girls that show up have you wrapped around their finger!! I’m fed up!!

    Ranjin Singh:
    Well-

    Having heard enough, Natalya finally speaks up-

    Natalya:
    Hey, at least you’ve got a shot, Beth.

    Beth Phoenix:
    Excuse me??

    Natalya:
    Maybe you’ve forgotten, but I do seem to recall beating YOU at Saturday Nights Main Event. And guess what?? I never got a title shot either.

    Beth Phoenix:
    Well don’t think you’re gonna worm your way into this match.

    Beth pushes Natalya. Natalya scoffs at the shove.

    Natalya:
    I’m not gonna worm my way into anything. But I deserve an opportunity.

    Natalya shoves Beth back - and Beth responds by TACKLING Natalya. They tussle to the floor, as the tag teams look to keep the pair apart. Singh covers his face, before looking up at Vladimir;

    Ranjin Singh:
    Get them out of here - please.

    Vladimir nods, and moves to do just that, as the camera pans out…



    Back into the arena, and UMAGA (having already had one entrance tonight) is already in the ring for the 8 man tag main event, as Armando Estrada prowls on the outside…

    **MEET YOUR MASTER**

    The triumvirate of the World Tag Team Champions Charlie Haas & Nick Dinsmore, and Mr. Money in the Bank, Brent Albright step through the curtain, taking their time to walk down the aisle, jawing with fans on the aisle…

    Jim Ross:
    They are growing in confidence and power by the week, and they have a huge night this Sunday at Backlash. Charlie Haas & Nick Dinsmore have the opportunity to knock off the famous D-Generation X, and Brent Albright faces the Wrestling Machine, Kurt Angle!!

    The Coach:
    There’s a changing of the guard in the offing, old timer. Shawn Michaels, Triple H and Kurt Angle wont step aside, so The Master Craftsmen are forcing them out of the way!!

    Jim Ross:
    If they come out of Backlash with two big wins, like they did at WrestleMania, they’ll undoubtedly be the strongest force in all the WWE. Even I couldn’t deny it then.

    Albright, Haas and Dinsmore join Umaga in the ring, with the Master Craftsmen rather pensive in the presence of the unpredictable Samoan Bulldozer…

    **MEDAL**

    Kurt Angle makes his iconic entrance, getting cheers from the fans, respecting the legend, whilst still singing; “YOU SUCK” to his theme as he sets off his pyro.

    Jim Ross:
    He may now be on Smackdown officially, but Kurt Angle is back for one night only on Raw as a preview of sorts ahead of his hotly anticipated showdown with Brent Albright at Backlash.

    The Coach:
    And he’s gonna realise, first hand, just what he’s in store for this Sunday when he takes on the younger, faster, stronger, Mr. Money in the Bank.

    Angle reaches the bottom of the ramp, wisely not getting in the ring whilst so heavily outnumbered by the heels…

    **JUST CLOSE YOUR EYES**

    To a big pop, Christian steps through the curtain, pumping his chest and signalling to the ‘Peeps’, before making his way down the aisle … as we see Estrada having to talk to Umaga to keep the Samoan Bulldozer restrained.

    Jim Ross:
    Captain Charisma has an almighty uphill climb this Sunday at Backlash. It’ll be his third encounter with Umaga, but this time, it’s not about gold, and it’s NO Holds Barred…

    The Coach:
    Say goodbye to Christian, J.R. I think this is his last night on Raw!! He’s got a death sentence at Backlash!!

    Jim Ross:
    They said the same before Summerslam. They said no one could beat Umaga - yet Christian was the first to do it. And it’s only been done once again since - by The Undertaker. That’s a hell of an exclusive club. Christian has done it before - and he’s confident he can do it again!!

    Christian meets Angle at the bottom of the ramp, with the two offering each other a nod - not overly friendly, but with no animosity between them either, as they wait for their partners before taking on the foursome in the ring…

    **BREAK IT DOWN**

    Nostalgia wins the day, as the music of DX raises the roof for the second time tonight. Shawn Michaels and Triple H make their way out together,

    Jim Ross:
    I can barely hear myself think here!! This crowd is electric for D-X!!

    The Coach:
    Idiots!! They’re all idiots!!!

    Jim Ross:
    The band is back together, and we’ll see in just a few moments if they truly can stand together as a team - with just six days before they look to claim an historic World Tag Team Championship we thought we’d NEVER see…

    The Game and HBK make their way to the bottom of the ramp, and there’s an uneasy stand off with Christian and Angle - plenty of history between the four men in differing combinations - but despite any differences they have with each other, the four men turn their focus from one another … and all look to the ring!!!

    The four appear to be on the same page … and they hit the ring!!! It’s an eight man brawl - and the fans LOVE it!!!

    Jim Ross:
    HERE WE GO!!!

    The Coach:
    Cheap shot!! Those cowards took a cheap shot!!!

    Jim Ross:
    It’s like a damn pier six brawl here!!! How in the hell can the official get this thing under control??? We’re gonna take a quick break here - and when we come back, it’s an eight man WAR!!!!



    Commercial Break



    Main Event | EIGHT MAN TAG TEAM MATCH:
    The Master Craftsmen & Umaga w/Armando Estrada vs. Kurt Angle, Christian & DX
    Joined in progress from the commercial break, the official HAS gotten things under control, and Brent Albright has a side headlock applied on Shawn Michaels in the ring, and tagging in Umaga to soften The Showstopper up. That plan doesn’t go down so well, as after a few blows and a choke in the corner, Umaga runs off the ropes … BUT IS MET WITH SWEET CHIN MUSIC!!!

    It’s pandemonium inside Freedom Hall with SWEET CHIN MUSIC making an extremely early appearance in the match. But, to highlight the kind of beast Umaga is, the Samoan Bulldozer DOESN’T STAY DOWN!!! He stirs, and despite being groggy, he makes a tag to Haas, just as Michaels tags in Angle, with Angle beating Haas to the punch in the middle of the ring to gain the upper hand.
    Q
    uickly, Haas drives a knee to the mid section, and pounds his former mentor to the ground and then drops a knee for a near fall. Haas tags Dinsmore with Angle softened up in the corner. Wasting no time, Nick hits five hard shoulder thrusts in the corner to Kurt, and then whips him off the ropes, but Angle ducks a clothesline and then grips behind Dinsmore - GERMAN!!!!!

    Angle holds on, and looks for a second … but ALBRIGHT clubs him from behind!!!! Suddenly, the ring fills up, with the irate face team wanting a piece of the heel side … but the official keeps the two sides apart. As things settle down, Angle whips Dinsmore into the heel corner - but doesn’t follow in. Instead, Angle challenges Albright to face him, and Brent - not wanting to look weak - demands the tag from Dinsmore to a pop.

    Albright and Angle lock up after a few moments of trash talk between the pair, and it’s Angle that gets the better of the mat wrestling exchange - riding Albright and slapping the back of Mr. Money in the Banks head, frustrating Albright. Albright escapes and rolls out, annoyed by the schooling on the mat, as Haas and Dinsmore try to give him encouragement on the floor, as Raw heads to another commercial…



    Commercial Break



    Back from the break, Angle is still in the ring, but is now on the receiving end from Haas, who works a body lock. Angle though, begins to battle back just as we return, and fights off Haas, eventually catching him with a Belly to Belly, before looking for a tag … but Albright tries to cut him off - only for Angle to catch Albright with a Belly to Belly too!!!!! Angle reaches and makes the tag to CHRISTIAN!!!

    Haas doesn’t realise Christian is the legal man, and pays for it, eating a dropkick from Captain Charisma!! Christian busts out a reverse elbow off the middle rope, and follows up by standing on Haas back by the ropes, choking Charlie. Christian leaps out, smacking Haas through the ropes, and then gets in the face of Umaga - and the momentary lapse allows Haas to drive Christian into the corner!!! Quickly, Haas tags out to Dinsmore.

    Dinsmore doesn’t get to work over Christian for long, as Captain Charisma battles out of the corner, sending Dinsmore off the ropes - when Umaga makes a blind tag - and Christian delivers a big back body drop on Nick … but he’s completely unaware that Umaga is the legal man now … and doesn’t find out, until he’s eating the ROLLING WHEEL KICK from Umaga!!! Christian gets flattened, and it gives the heel team the momentum again!!!

    Umaga begins to dismantle Christian, overpowering his opponent this Sunday at Backlash, being admonished for a blatant choke - something Coach points out he’ll be allowed to do this Sunday - before crushing Christian with the running butt splash in the corner. He drags Captain Charisma out of the corner, and drops a big leg before making a cover … 1...2...NO!!!!! Christian kicks out, and as Umaga stands up - Albright makes a blind tag on the Bulldozer!!!

    Umaga is far from impressed by the blind tag, as Albright picks up the scraps, stomping Christian, but as he locks him up for a Half Nelson Suplex - Christian counters with a snap mare, and a basement dropkick to the back, giving him the chance to make a tag to TRIPLE H - bringing The Game into the match for the first time - competing on Raw for the first time since August!!!!!

    The Game ploughs through Albright with clotheslines and a high knee, before dropping a knee on the downed Mr. Money in the Bank, 1...2...NO!!! He brings Albright to his feet, but Brent explodes, and DRIVES Triple H to the heel team corner, where Dinsmore and Haas both illegally attack The Game, along with Albright!! Michaels, Angle and Christian all complain, but all the heel team get is a reprimand from the official, as Dinsmore comes in to get a piece of The Game.

    Dinsmore and Haas get in and out of the ring quickly, making frequent tags to give The Game an idea of what he’ll face at Backlash. They deliver the assisted guillotine for a near fall, but soon after, Dinsmore gets a head of steam, charging at Trips - AND RUNS RIGHT INTO A SPINEBUSTER!!!!! The Game rises up, and side steps Albright, throwing him out of the ring, before setting up for a PEDIGREE on Dinsmore … AND CONNECTS!!!! Cover … 1...2...BROKEN BY HAAS!!!!!

    There’s fury from the face team at the interference, and Triple H, in a rage, comes chasing after Haas, chasing him to the outside, but as Haas runs around with The Game in pursuit … ALBRIGHT IS LYING IN WAIT … AND NAILS THE GAME WITH A BELLY TO BELLY ON THE OUTSIDE!!! Quickly, he rolls Trips back inside, as a stand off begins on the outside with both teams exchanging heated words, nearly coming to blows…

    But attention is diverted to the ring, as Dinsmore rolls over and makes the cover on The Game, 1...2...KICK OUT!!! Despite still being worse for wear off the Pedigree, Nick drags Triple H to the heel corner, and makes a tag to Haas, as the heels begin to isolate The Game, tagging in and out like a well oiled machine, keeping Triple H WELL away from his teams corner.

    Umaga is brought back in, and he picks the bones of The Game, but Triple H starts to mount a comeback, then hit’s the ropes - but takes a knee to the back from Dinsmore … and staggers away … into the path of the Bulldozer … delivering the swinging power slam!!! Umaga drops down, getting the cover, 1...2...SHAWN MICHAELS breaks the count … and ALL HELL BREAKS LOOSE!!!!! Michaels has had enough - and so have Angle and Christian!!!!!

    All eight superstars then engage in a mass brawl, as the referee loses control of the action. The action spills to the outside, leaving only Triple H and Haas. The Game has the better of the exchange, but then runs off the ropes, and Estrada catches his leg, tripping him, leaving him as easy pickings … AND THE HAASTILE TAKEOVER CONNECTS!!! Haas covers … but the referee correctly informs him that he isn’t the legal man!!!

    Haas tries to get the attention of Umaga, getting the Bulldozer - who is choking Christian on the floor - back inside to make the cover. With AAE imploring him, Umaga gets back into the ring, and the Bulldozer mounts the ropes, wanting a splash on Triple H … but Dinsmore then makes a blind tag!!! Despite the tag though, Umaga still lands with the big splash off the middle rope onto Triple H!!!

    Umaga is set to cover, but the referee pats his back, signalling the tag being made, with Umaga confused, not realising he was tagged … AS ANGLE SWOOPS IN FROM BEHIND … ANGLE SLAM!!! A huge roar engulfs Freedom Hall as Angle takes Umaga off his feet!!! Umaga rolls out, and Haas then comes after Angle … Angle ducks under … ANGLE SLAM TO HAAS!!!! Dinsmore charges - but he is tripped - ANKLE LOCK!!!!!

    Angle applies the submission … BUT ALBRIGHT SNEAKS IN THROUGH THE BACK DOOR … AND CROWBARS ANGLE!!!! Albright has Angle in his submission … BUT SHAWN MICHAELS FLIES FROM THE TOP - AND DELIVERS THE ELBOW TO ALBRIGHT!!!! Michaels begins to tune up the band for Dinsmore - the legal man - but Estrada gets involved again, tripping Michaels from the outside, and yanks him - NUTS FIRST into the ring post!!!!!

    Before Estrada can do anything else though - he spots Christian coming after him - and he HIGH TAILS it through the crowd!!! It leaves Dinsmore and Triple H, with The Game still selling the effects of the beating he has taken, as Dinsmore looks to deliver a his Northern Lights Suplex … but CHRISTIAN - of all people - comes to Triple H’s aide, breaking the grip … but before he can do any damage - UMAGA is back, and WIPES OUT Christian with a thunderous clothesline!!!

    Umaga follows Christian out of the ring, as Dinsmore goes for take two on The Game … but eats a FACEBUSTER!!!!! Dinsmore staggers away … SWEET CHIN MUSIC!!!! Dinsmore goes down, The Game makes the cover … and before Albright can break it - ANGLE TRIPS HIM - AND APPLIES THE ANKLELOCK!!!!! The referee counts the fall for Triple H on Dinsmore … 1...2...3!!!!!
    Winners: Triple H, Shawn Michaels, Kurt Angle & Christian @ 17:17

    Jim Ross:
    DX WIN!!! If there was any doubt that the chemistry was still there - there sure as hell isn’t anymore!! The Game and Shawn Michaels have picked up right where they left off - and they‘ve just beaten the World Tag Team Champions!!!

    The Coach:
    But it took Kurt Angle and Christian to make it happen!! Don’t dress this up as something it isn’t. Please tell me this isn’t a sign…

    Jim Ross:
    Ya sound concerned, Coach - and you can bet your ass the Master Craftsmen have gotta be concerned too. Doubt will surely creep into the minds of Dinsmore and Haas heading into Backlash this Sunday!!

    The Coach:
    I don’t even want to imagine-

    Triple H and Shawn Michaels celebrate in the ring, as Angle departs, with Albright clutching his ankle in pain on the outside. Meanwhile, Christian NAILS Umaga with the steel steps, knocking the Samoan Bulldozer off his feet!!!

    Jim Ross:
    DOWN GOES UMAGA!!!

    The Coach:
    He’s only gonna make things worse for himself on Sunday!!!

    Angle continues to walk out, passing through the curtain as Christian backs up the ramp, pumping his chest, looking fired up after putting Umaga down - though the Bulldozer is stirring already. In the ring, D-Generation X pose for the fans, whilst the Master Craftsmen regroup on the outside.

    Jim Ross:
    We’ve seen a HUGE shift in momentum here tonight. The Master Craftsmen have been knocked off their perch here this evening - and then some!! Haas and Dinsmore may well wave their titles goodbye at Backlash!!!

    The Coach:
    Cant happen. It just … cant. Can it??

    Jim Ross:
    It absolutely can, Coach. And you had better get your head back in the game - you’re up next with the Playas Club!! Folks - we aren’t done here - John Cena and Ric Flair are set to come face to face, six days away from their World Heavyweight title showdown this Sunday. What a powder keg this could be!!! We’ll be right back!!!



    Commercial Break



     

    ***
    VIDEO PACKAGE

    ~~ A FLAIR FOR THE GOLD ~~
    #06 - WRESTLE WAR 1989

    In the third match of their classic trilogy in ‘89, Flair finally defeats Ricky Steamboat to once again capture the gold with an inside cradle.

    END PACKAGE
    ***


    Back in the ring, THE COACH is all set for the PLAYAS CLUB, with his bodyguard BIG ZEKE loitering on the outside. Despite being concerned for The Master Craftsmen moments ago, Coach perks himself up now that he’s in the spotlight…

    The Coach: I don’t know about you people - but I’ve found these videos of Ric Flair title wins a little nauseating all night. Am I right??

    Boos.

    The Coach: I mean, Flair was good - in the eighties … but so was Bon Jovi!! This is John Cena’s time now - no pun intended. But seriously - where’s the tributes to John Cena?? Because as the world turns, each new generation eclipses the last. Just like this show!!!

    Coach laughs, as he pumps himself up for the big Playas Club intro…

    The Coach: You see … Piper was the pits, The Barbershop was cut short, The Kings Court got sent down, and for the Highlight Reel it’s lights out. I’m the host with the most, and this is the show with the brightest glow!!!

    Heat for the catchphrase. Coach is oblivious.

    The Coach: WELCOME TO THE COACHES PLAYAS CLUB!!!!!

    Boos.

    The Coach: And I think you all know who I have tonight on my show-

    WOO‘S from the fans in anticipation of Flair. Coach isn’t impressed, but acknowledges the reaction.

    The Coach: Him too - but more importantly, the WORLD … HEAVYWEIGHT … CHAMPION!!! And let’s get this thing GOIN!!! Ric Flair - COME ON DOWN!!!

    **ALSO SPRACH ZARATHRUSTRA**

    Ric Flair strolls confidently down the ramp, dressed sharply as always in an expensive navy suit, whilst still sporting a plaster on the side of his forehead after last weeks attack at the hands of Cena.

    Flair steps inside the ropes, strutting to a pop, bouncing off the ropes, and letting out a big WOOOO to the fans. Coach isn’t impressed.

    The Coach: Very mature. How old are you again?? Grow up!!

    Flair smirks. Coach turns to the ramp to intro Cena…

    The Coach: And- … actually

    Coach turns back to Flair, with a cocky smirk on his face.

    The Coach: As a matter of fact … before I bring out the greatest world champion of all time-

    Heat. Flair chuckles at the slight.

    The Coach: There’s a question I have for you, Flair. And it’s a simple one… what are you still doing here?? I don’t mean - here, here … I mean, here - still in the WWE. You had your moment in the sun at WrestleMania when you gave Kurt Angle the fight of his life. Why couldn’t you just end it there, when it became apparent that this stupid dream of yours to win a seventeenth world title wasn’t going to happen??

    Boos from the fans. Flair looks away for a moment, shaking the microphone in his hand as he smirks to himself, before responding.

    Ric Flair:
    It became apparent, did it?? I guess that’s somebody else called Ric Flair headlining in Kansas City this Sunday, huh??

    Flair shakes his head.

    Ric Flair:
    That cant be - because I KNOW there’s no other Ric Flair’s out there stylin and profilin -- I’M ONE OF A KIND - WOOO!!!

    WOOOO!!! ~ The fans.

    Ric Flair:
    And there’s gonna be one hell of a bar tab ran up in K.C this Sunday, let me tell ya!! We’re gonna have a party - it’s gonna be the celebration to end ALLLLLL celebrations - and I’ll even let you tag along, Coachman!!

    Pop. Flair nods at the reaction from the fans, then steps closer to Coach, getting more serious.

    Ric Flair:
    But you wanna know why I’m still here?? You wanna know what’s causin all this?? I’ll fill ya in, brother. Two weeks ago - yeah - I walked that aisle, ready to walk off into the sunset and call it a career. I’ll be honest, at that point, I had given up the ghost. And then John Cena … John Cena wanted to make a fool of me.
    Heat for Cena. Flair scoffs.

    Ric Flair:
    A fool of me?? ME?? Are ya kiddin me?? There’s not a man alive, that dares embarrass The Nature Boy!!



    [/OVERRUN}



    Ric Flair:
    John Cena offered me the chance. And when you get handed something as precious as a shot at the World Heavyweight Championship - you damn well take it. Even you, Coach… ya cant turn it down!!

    Coach laughs at that suggestion.

    The Coach:
    With all due respect, I think The Coach versus John Cena would be a more competitive match than the one you’ll be having with him at Backlash.

    Ric Flair:
    Is that a fact??

    With his smug grin, Coach steps to Flair - who is also smiling.

    The Coach:
    I think it is. And let’s look at the facts - you’re fifty nine years old. John Cena is about to turn thirty in a couple days. He is almost literally half your age. He’s in the prime of his career right now. And your prime was in black and white pictures.

    Boos. The smile drops from Flairs face, and now, he purses his lips, listening carefully, whilst slowly nodding, clearly disrespected.

    The Coach:
    He’s bigger than you, he’s stronger than you, he‘s faster, more agile, more durable. There’s no one on this roster right now that can even touch the guy. Short of an act of God and John Cena cant make it to Backlash - how the hell can you beat him and win the World title?? Seriously - I’m asking - what makes you THINK you can even contend with John Cena?? Because I cant think of a single path you have to victory at Backlash.

    Heat for Coach, who isn’t holding back. Flair looks around at the fans for some inspiration, but before he can speak up, Coach pipes up again.

    The Coach:
    And hey - don’t start pointing at your Rolex watch or those custom made shoes you‘re wearing. You might look the part, Ric, but those material items don’t mean a thing anymore. That suit wont intimidate John Cena, and your bravado isn’t gonna have The Champ worried for a second.

    Flair leans on the ropes, shaking his head, then takes a long look at his Rolex, removing it, and holding it up as he gets it Coaches face.

    Ric Flair:
    You think this is what it’s about??

    Naitch drops the Rolex - and whilst looking at Coach, he STAMPS the expensive gold jewellery, before bouncing off the ropes, and DROPS his knee on the destroyed watch!!! Flair bounces back
    up, right in the face of The Coach.

    Ric Flair:
    Means nothing. NOTHING!! This suit??

    Flair roughly takes his jacket off and tears the arms at the seam, before tossing the lot away.

    Ric Flair:
    I don’t care about it!! Not at all. I’ve a hundred watches just like it. And I’ve more suits in my closet at home that have never seen the light of day than you’ve had birthdays, my boy.

    Coach takes a step back, a little concerned with the rising passion from Flair.

    Ric Flair:
    But that Worlds Championship?? It’s something money cant buy. It’s not just some material. IT’S PRICELESS!!! And no matter how many times you’ve been to the top of the mountain, that thirst - the want - the NEED for that gold … it’s intoxicating. Ya cant replicate it. Whether you’ve had it once or sixteen times - you gotta be inhuman not to crave that glory. Regardless of age - FORGET THE AGE - everybody wants to be the Worlds Heavyweight Champion.

    Wild eyed, Flair is right in the face of The Coach, who keeps ever so slightly backing away.

    Ric Flair:
    Ask Hulk Hogan -- Ask Triple H -- Ask Ricky Steamboat, Big Dust, The Stinger, Harley Race, Luger, Angle, Shawn Michaels -- they’ll all - to a man - tell you the same thing. NOTHING beats it!! It’s about the gold, it’s about the recognition, it’s about being known - the world over - AS THE MAN!!! WOOO!!!

    WOOOO!! ~The fans. Flair settles himself for a moment.

    Ric Flair:
    No matter how many women I’ve been with all over this planet, or the feeling of ridin on a private jet - compared to being recognised as ‘The Champ’ it’s worthless. Without the Worlds Championship - it’s ALL meaningless.

    Flair turns to look at Coach again.

    Ric Flair:
    And for you to stand there and tell me I cant compete?? That I cant be The Worlds Heavyweight Champion??

    Flair slaps himself across the face; not once, not twice, but thrice. All thick slaps, no going easy on himself, getting himself FIRED up.

    Ric Flair:
    That’s what that is to Ric Flair!! Nobody is gonna tell The Nature Boy he cant compete with anyone. Not you, not Cena - and not the experts who once upon a time told me I’d never wrestle again after surviving a plane crash.

    The Naitch pauses for a second, staring at Coach, and nodding.

    Ric Flair:
    Did you hear that, okay?? A PLANE CRASH!!! I SURVIVED IT!!! I SURVIVED THAT PLANE CRASH -- AND I BECAME WORLDS CHAMPION!!!

    Flair gets right in Coach face.

    Ric Flair: SIXTEEN TIMES!!! COUNT ‘EM!!!

    He takes a step back.

    Ric Flair: And I’m gearin up for Number Seventeen!! So don’t tell me that I cant compete with John Cena. Nothing is impossible in this life. I should know - I’ve done the impossible.

    Polite applause from the fans.

    Ric Flair: So to answer your question, Coachman … how am I gonna beat John Cena?? How am I gonna beat the man?? HA!!

    Flair hit’s the ropes, and struts back, before looking at Coach and exclaims;

    Ric Flair: I’M GONNA BE THE MAN!!!

    Big pop, and a few ‘WOOO’ shots from the fans.

    Ric Flair: And that’s the limousine riding … jet flyin, kiss stealing, wheelin dealin-

    **HATE ME NOW**

    John Cena’s theme cuts off Flair during his famous catchphrase, and Flair knows it wasn’t by accident. Slick Ric has a wry smile on his face, as he watches The Man in Black make his way down the aisle - with Cena looking all business, tossing the big gold belt into the ring, before he slides inside himself.

    Cena gets up, and stares off with Flair, picking the title belt back up, throwing it over his shoulder, as Flair does some talking to The Champ off mic. The music dies down, and Coach welcomes Cena to the party…

    The Coach: Mr. Cena, it’s a pleasure having you here on-

    Cena rips the mic from the hands of The Coach not even looking at the host of the show, before addressing Flair, talking over the boos for him from the fans.

    John Cena: That the best you got?? Coach asks you how you’re gonna beat the best in the business, and all you got is; “Imma be the man??”You wanna be the man?? How about you try BEIN a man - BITCH!!

    There’s a collective intake of breath inside the arena, with Cena go right for the throat on Flair. Cena walks back and forth in the ring as he continues, ignoring the boos from the fans.
    John Cena:Out here last week takin the moral high ground like you some kinda saint. These people bowing at ya when ya walk out here like you GOD. Makes me wanna throw up all over that nasty ass suit you got on.

    Heat. Flair mouths; “Cost more than you can imagine, buddy”, with a smile, but despite the smile from Flair, the tension is rising.

    John Cena:
    You talk about me bein a sly dog when you aint got a leg to stand on. How many wives ya cheat on, there, Naitch??

    OHHHH ~the fans. In the background, Coaches jaw drops a little in shock.

    John Cena: What about those kids of yours you neglected all those years you were out on the town, drinkin champagne, chasin tail.

    OHHHH ~the fans … again. Flair is no longer smiling, and looks stoic, trying to keep his composure.

    John Cena: How many millions did ya squander on fast cars, fast jets, and fast women?? It aint this *taps the belt* you’re chasin still, Ric… it’s that lifestyle you still want … and this title gives you it, but if you want your hands on this title, you better get to inventin a time machine before Sunday. Cause that’s the only way you’re beating me.

    Heat. Cena begins to turn his anger toward the fans.

    John Cena: And yet you call me garbage?? And you people call me garbage too?? But you worship the ground this scumbag walks?? Some set of morals ya got there. Trust me, I’m gonna enjoy seein every single one of your faces, when I crush this old mans dreams on Sunday.

    Cena continues on, not even acknowledging the boos from the fans as he turns back to Flair, venting at the Hall of Famer.

    John Cena: Flair, you oughta be down on your knees - THANKING MY ASS for givin you one last shot at the big time and makin this match on Sunday happen. A last chance to relive those glory days you cant grow out of and leave behind.

    Flair takes a few seconds to respond, giving the fans a chance to be heard. Naitch looks Cena in the eye the entire time, before speaking up - calmly, and slowly.

    Ric Flair: I wont thank you for a damn thing, Cena.

    Ric keeps his composure as he continues his retort to Cenas rant.

    Ric Flair: Don’t make it out like you handed me an olive branch. You wanted to humiliate me by having The Miz of all people beat me into retirement. That was what you wanted all along. You didn’t want this match, and you did nothing to make it happen, either. All you want … is to be able to stick it to these people and be the guy that can say; “I stopped Ric Flair from winning number seventeen.”That’s it.

    Cena smirks, and shrugs at the suggestion.

    Ric Flair: And as for my personal life??

    RIC FLAIR SLAPS JOHN CENA ACROSS THE FACE!!!

    A huge cheer engulfs Freedom Hall, as Flair - WILD EYED - is damn near head to head with Cena, who is about to say something, but Ric jumps over him.

    Ric Flair: HOW DARE YOU!!!!! THAT-HAS-NOTH-ING-TO-DO-WITH-THAT!!!

    Flair points at the belt.

    Ric Flair: Was I a horrible husband?? Damn right!! I’m ashamed of that fact, but I have to live with it every day. I have to look in the mirror and I have to look at a guy that neglected his responsibilities to his children!! I cant go back in time and fix that now. As crazy as it sounds … that’s why I’m hell bent on winning that title one last time. All that greed, those selfish decisions I’ve made for the last thirty years … they have to be worth it. I’ve gotta go out on top. At least then, I’ll have something to show for it.

    Cena shakes his head.

    John Cena: If you have to go out on top, then you oughta quit about fifteen years ago, Naitch!!

    Heat. We also see Coach laugh at the zinger.

    John Cena: That’s the problem here. You never knew when to quit. Number Seventeen isn’t gonna be enough, Naitch. This is your damn life, and y’know it. Only problem is, despite people telling you it was time … you never listened. No matter what anyone says - YOU are Ric Flair, and you’ll never just walk away.

    A mix of light cheers, and a few sparse ‘WOOO’ shouts from the fans.

    John Cena: Well I’m gonna tell ya. Ric -

    Cena places a hand on Flairs shoulder - which is immediately shoved off by Naitch. Cena raises his eyebrow at the action from Flair, before telling him off mic; “I‘ll let that slide…” Cena takes a moment to reset, shaking his head as he starts.

    John Cena: Ric … your glory days are over. Look at your peers, those guys you rode with; Arn, Tully, Dusty Rhodes, Steamboat, Barry Windham … all gone. They packed up and went home a long, long time ago. There’s no one ridin Space Mountain anymore, and the ‘Dirtiest Player In The Game’ routine is old news. Those Four Horsemen?? They got taken to the glue factory a decade ago. I know all the tricks you’ve got. Aint got nothing to worry me with. Seen ‘em all a hundred times, and I’m ready for all of ‘em.

    Flair mouths; “We‘ll see”, still looking confident. Cena shakes his head again, coming closer to Flair.

    John Cena: I tried to tell you last week that it’s over. I tried to tell you that you’re just a laughing stock now. You didn’t take the hint. Come Sunday, I’ll have to show you.

    Heat.

    John Cena: Long time ago, Ric … you said those words; “with a tear … in my eye”… greatest moment of your life, yadda yadda yadda. Remember??

    Flair nods.

    John Cena: Trust me, you’re gonna have tears in your eyes at Backlash … and these people will have tears in their eyes too … when you’re beggin me to stop.

    Heat. Flair doesn’t react, and doesn’t blink, trying not to show any weakness or emotion.

    John Cena: But I wont shed a single tear, and I wont show you an ounce of mercy. Not like Kurt Angle did at WrestleMania. He gave you the chance to walk away with your dignity. You chose not to. You chose to step up to me, and it’s up to me to take that choice away now.

    Cena comes right up to Flair now to drive his message home.

    John Cena: Make no mistake about it, Naitch - come Backlash, it’ll be a sad, sad end to a glorious career. But you outstayed your welcome. When you come after this-

    The Champ raises the belt slightly off his shoulder, taking a brief look at it - as does Flair.

    John Cena: You’re gonna find out just how much the times have changed. And unlike Kurt Angle, I’ll have no hesitation on putting a forceful, definitive end on your career.

    Boos. Cena prods the chest of Flair now, with each time he says ‘YOU’…

    John Cena: At Backlash … YOU will bleed … YOU will sweat … and YOU will pay the price … for steppin up to The Champ!!

    Cena backs up a few steps, and turns to leave, getting out of the ring, with his point made. The Champ walks up the ramp a little, but Flair, it seems, isn’t quite done yet, and doesn’t want the showdown to end this way.

    Ric Flair: No - no, you don’t get the last word, Cena. Not tonight. Not with me. Get back in here, and look at me in the eye, like a man!!

    Cena chuckles at the words from Flair, and shouts “I‘M ALL MAN”, before taking a few seconds to think about whether or not to return. Curiosity wins the day for Cena, and The Champ re-enters the ring, and Flair nods as Cena gets back in.

    Ric Flair: That’s it. Yeahhh … Okay. I want to tell you something, Cena…

    Flair composes himself, taking a look out at the fans, nodding, before looking at Cena, calm and composed.

    Ric Flair: Odds are that yeah … I’ll bleed this Sunday. Nothin new there. Heck, look at me - I’M SWEATING NOW!!…

    Smirking, Naitch wipes the sweat off his face, before returning the earlier favour from Cena and prods The Champ in the chest when he says ‘you’.

    Ric Flair: But it’s you that’s gonna pay the price - when I’m the one leaving Kansas City with that Worlds Championship on Sunday.

    Cena shakes his head, rather matter-of-factly, giving Flair’s words no thought at all.

    Ric Flair: No, of course not, right?? You’ve all the answers, Cena. Like Coach said - you’re half my age. I’ve been doin this for longer than you’ve been alive, jack. I’ve experienced the highest of highs and the lowest of lows. I’ve seen it all … I’ve seen it … ALL. From North Carolina to North Korea, from one side of this world to the other, and all the way back around to Louisville, Kentucky!!

    Cheap pop from the fans. Flair affords himself a sly smirk for that one.

    Ric Flair: And I know what it’s like to be in your shoes. The all conquering champ. You feel untouchable, right??

    Cena nods, and mouths; “Damn right I do.”

    Ric Flair: Yeah…

    Flair nods, pursing his lips as he gets set to continue, staring at the highly confident Man in Black.

    Ric Flair: For you, this is just another day in the office, right?? And this Sunday at Backlash is just another title defence, against an old, broken down man. How close is that??
    Cena shrugs and nods.

    Ric Flair: That’s how it is for you. That’s what Backlash is for John Cena. Another night, another airport, another title defence, another match, another city, another opponent. Nothin special.

    “Business as usual” ~Cena off mic. Flair pauses for a second…

    Ric Flair: For me - it’s final.

    Flair lets that sink in for a moment. Cena doesn’t look phased.

    Ric Flair: It’s one final main event, it’s one final time in Kansas City, it’s one final shot at the richest prize in all the world … it’s the last time, the FINAL opportunity I’ll get to go out on top…

    There’s a rising noise inside Freedom Hall in support for the Nature Boy.

    Ric Flair: And for one FINAL time this Sunday, I will muster … every … single ounce of energy … courage … and desire … that I’ve got in this old beaten down body of mine … in order to compete with you.

    Flair points at Cena, before then pointing directly at the belt, stepping forward.

    Ric Flair: And I will do whatever it takes - Whatever. It. Takes. … to leave Backlash … as the Worlds Heavyweight … Champion … for the seventeenth and final time.

    Cheers for Flair, and a few WOOOO’s too … as Flair - with a twinkle in his eye - looks eye to eye with Cena, who shakes his head, not buying the impassioned speech from Flair.

    Flair surprisingly extends his hand, with Coach looking around in shock, whilst Cena laughs. The Champ fixes the belt over his shoulder, shaking his head, mouthing; “I‘ll give you this one - because it‘s about the only hand you‘ll lay on me…”

    Cena looks to accept the handshake … but Flair pulls away at the last second, running his fingers through his hair, and giving Cena a “WOOOOO” … and gets the same chant back from the fans, before he exit’s the ring, looking full of confidence and swagger …

    Jim Ross:
    That is right outta the Nature Boys handbook!! The mind games have begun in earnest … it’s Ric Flairs LAST EVER shot at the World Heavyweight Championship this Sunday at Backlash. But in his way is a young, dominant, confident champion, who wont for a moment consider rolling over to give Flair the dream send-off.

    … But Cena doesn’t look phased in the slightest. The Champ turns and watches as Flair strides up the ramp, slapping hands with the fans, as Raw goes off the air after a LONG overrun, with Backlash swiftly on the horizon…

    Jim Ross:
    On Pay-Per-View this Sunday in Kansas City, where Ric Flairs collection of World Titles began - it may well come full circle - but to do it, he’ll have to be every inch the Dirtiest Player in the Game to pull off one of the all time great closing chapters to the greatest career of them all. One way or another, history WILL be made this Sunday - Ric Flair challenges John Cena - by Gawd, don’t you dare miss it!!!


    END OF SHOW
     


    ***

    Official Card for WWE Backlash:
    April 27 2008 | Sprint Centre, Kansas City MO
    Theme Music; ‘Take it All’ by Zididada


    World Heavyweight Championship Match:
    John Cena vs. Ric Flair

    Intercontinental Championship Match:
    Matt Hardy vs. CM Punk
    *No Championship Advantage*

    WWE Tag Team Championships Match:
    The Master Craftsmen vs. Triple H & Shawn Michaels

    Womens Championship | Triple Threat Match:
    Gail Kim vs. Beth Phoenix vs. Michelle McCool

    Grudge Match:
    ‘Mister Money in the Bank’ Brent Albright vs. Kurt Angle

    NO HOLDS BARRED:
    Christian vs. Umaga
    w/Armando Alejandro Estrada

    The Brotherhood Implosion:
    Mark Henry
    w/Theodore Long vs. Shelton Benjamin

    -----

    ~ ON THE PRE-SHOW ~
    Tag Team #1 Contenders | Four Corners Match:
    The Angels of Anarchy vs. The Hart Legacy vs. Americas Most Wanted vs. Cody Rhodes & Ken Doane

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