Raw is War

Chicago, Illinois
April 12, 2004


On the final RAW before Backlash, Shawn Michaels displayed just how quickly he can end the upcoming Final Encounter Triple Threat Match and become the World Heavyweight Champion. During the chaos that ensued when every member of the Eight Man Tag Team Match between Evolution and Michaels, Chris Benoit, Mick Foley and Shelton Benjamin were involved at one time, Michaels suddenly landed Sweet Chin Music on Randy Orton and won the match for his team. Michaels now seems to have the momentum heading into Backlash when the biggest prize in sports entertainment is on the line.

The upcoming pay-per-view event was a hot topic on RAW as several matches were added, and many of the existing matches saw new developments. Shelton Benjamin will have his latest opportunity to prove just how far he has come. At Backlash, on the heels of his two consecutive victories over Triple H, Benjamin will now have the opportunity against perhaps the greatest to ever enter the ring when he faces Ric Flair at Backlash. And on RAW, Benjamin showed that he is not afraid of Flair when he attacked the Nature Boy just seconds after the match was set.

Also, Tajiri will face Jonathan Coachman after defeating a “five-star ninja” (who turned out to be Al Snow) to earn the match with Coachman.

RAW also saw an escalation of hostilities between Chris Jericho and his Backlash opponents, Christian and Trish Stratus. While Stratus faced Lita in singles action, both Jericho and Christian entered the fray and Jericho suddenly found himself on the receiving end of a vicious assault from both Stratus and Christian. Stratus showed that she has everything it takes to injure Jericho – offering several kicks and slaps as proof that she is not afraid to get in the mix at Backlash. Will Jericho have something up his sleeve for this Handicap Match? Find out at Backlash.

Speaking of escalations, just when it seemed that the tension between Mick Foley and Randy Orton could not be escalated any further, Foley took to the ring to announce that it will in fact be Cactus Jack to meet Randy Orton at Backlash. The Hardcore Legend said that Mick Foley may be too caring about the welfare of an individual such as Orton, but Cactus Jack certainly does not care and will inflict the devastating punishment on Orton that Foley seeks. Therefore, Cactus Jack will get the call at the pay-per-view event.

RAW comes to you next week from Calgary less than 24 hours after the Backlash pay-per-view event. Who will win the Final Encounter Triple Threat Match for the World Heavyweight Championship? Will Cactus Jack inflict the harm on Randy Orton that was predicted by Mick Foley? What else will Backlash bring to the RAW landscape? Only one way to find out … watch Backlash exclusively on pay-per-view on Sunday night at 8/7 CT, and then watch RAW next Monday night at 9/8 CT on Spike TV!

Match Results:

Kane defeated Grandmaster Sexay

Tajiri defeated Al Snow

Lita defeated Trish Stratus via disqualification

The Hurricane defeated Sylvain Grenier

Shawn Michaels, Chris Benoit, Shelton Benjamin and Mick Foley defeated Evolution