Raw is War

Manchester, New Hampshire
July 12, 2004


When Chris Benoit raised the World Heavyweight Championship high after defeating Triple H at Vengeance, he couldn’t have imagined that he’d have to defend that title the next night on RAW … against Eric Bischoff’s nephew Eugene. When Eugene learned he’d be in Monday night’s main event, little did he know it was simply part of The Game’s vicious plan. And neither competitor expected to end the night bloodied and incapacitated at the hands of a third party.

The match began beautifully for the challenger. He avoided Benoit’s patented diving headbutt, later mimicking his opponent with German suplexes and even the Crippler Crossface. The Rabid Wolverine was clearly willing to do whatever it took to retain, ripping into Eugene with quick, stinging moves. But Eugene again caught Benoit using other Superstars’ attack arsenal, hitting a Rock Bottom that came dangerously close to being the end. Benoit managed to get a foot on the bottom rope, but Eugene thought he won and went to claim his World title.

With the match still technically in progress, Evolution descended upon the ring. It was perfect timing for Triple H and Company, as Benoit was down and Eugene was celebrating. Soon, the contest disintegrated into a barbaric beat-down. When Evolution had their fill with Benoit, they turned their full attention to tearing apart Eugene. Randy Orton hit an RKO. That was followed by a Batista Bomb. And worst of all, Eugene’s “favorite wrestler” blasted him with a Pedigree and left him an unconscious mass of crimson.

Besides taking his turn beating up Eugene, Ric Flair also found time to school The Hurricane. Flair weathered an early storm from his young opponent, who even managed to draw first blood. But that seemed to incite the “Nature Boy,” who took over in signature fashion. He isolated The Hurricane’s leg, setting up a Figure Four Leg Lock from which there was no escape.

Fellow Evolution member Batista had no such luck against the new Intercontinental Champion Edge. The animal dropped everything but the kitchen sink on the five-time Intercontinental Champion, but Edge’s resourcefulness saw him through. When Batista went for his high-impact spinebuster, Edge rolled him up and grabbed the top rope for leverage. The illegal advantage went undetected by the referee, and Batista lost in what could be considered poetic justice after Batista’s controversial Vengeance win over Chris Jericho.

The Lita-Kane-Matt Hardy saga spilled over into Jericho’s Highlight Reel on Monday night. In the end, Lita told off Kane and Y2J infuriated the monster into an impromptu match. Kane clearly was more interested in taking out his frustration than winning, opting for a DQ-causing low blow — just because he could.

Lita wasn’t the only pretty face on Monday Night RAW. Trish Stratus watched as Tyson Tomko beat Maven, and three Diva hopefuls were interviewed by a very pleased Jerry “The King” Lawler.

Match Results:

Intercontinental Champion Edge defeats Batista (non-title match)

Rhyno (with Tajiri) def. Robert Conway (with Sylvain Grenier)

Tyson Tomko (with Trish Stratus) def. Maven (with Nidia)

Chris Jericho def. Kane (DQ)

Ric Flair def. The Hurricane

The match between World Heavyweight Champion Chris Benoit and Eugene ended in a no contest.