RAW Report 3/31/08 Orlando

This first RAW after WM starts with a recap of WM. Mini-video clips from the HBK/Flair match including the final sweet chin music and HBK leaving the ring. Then the huge ovation for Flair. Flair kissing his kids and then going up that long ramp. He posed at the top in tears (wish I could have seen it live).

Music and pyro.

JR says Flair will have his farewell address tonight.

Cena’s music but he doesn’t come out. His music stops and there’s a break (just like 4-5 seconds) and HHH’s music starts. JR says something about live TV. HHH’s music stops when he doesn’t come out. After another short break Orton’s music plays and he comes out smirking. Orton gets in the ring and poses on a corner with his title belt. He grabs a mic and gets major heat. There is a tiny bit of pop for him in there. He asks if they were expecting someone else. Huge “you suck” chants. He says all week it wasn’t whether or not he was going to win at WM, it was who was going to beat him. Cena – mixed heat and pop – or HHH – huge pop. It was never that he was going to win. People never gave him any credit. Whether they like it or not, the fans have no choice but to Show him respect. The fans don’t like that idea.
He says they never liked hearing the laundry list before, they they’re going to hear it again – he goes through everyone he’s beaten to retain his title. He says he’s sure HHH and Cena want a rematch, but they don’t deserve it. Forget the Hulk-a-mania Era, forget the Attitude Era, we are living in the Age Of Orton.
JBL’s music and he comes out to the ring. JBL doesn’t look happy. He says Cena and HHH don’t deserve a championship match, JBL says he does. He says Orton has the audacity to brag about his match last night? He won last night because he was lucky. His whole reign he been predicated on luck. While JBL’s, the longest in WWE history, was predicated on dominance. His match last night was brutal and Orton can’t beat him. Orton never can beat him. JBL is announcing his candidacy for the title. He says if Orton thinks they dislike him as champion, they’ll hate JBL. JBL leaves the ring area.
Orton starts ranting that JBL return to the ring and face him.
The fans start going wild as suddenly Matt Hardy comes out through the fans behind Orton. He slides into the ring and attacks Orton from behind. Orton gains the upper hand, a bit, and escapes. “Hardy” chants as the camera fades out.

– Commercial

Regal runs up to Matt Hardy out back and screams at him. He’s pissed about Matt attacking Orton. Matt’s pissed about Orton’s attack when he had his appendix out. Matt demands a match with Orton. Regal says he’ll think about it.

Cade and Murdoch are in the ring. Damn! Cryme Tyme Tyme comes out to the ring! The fans love them!
Cade and Shad start. Kicks and forearms to Shad. Cade is pissed! Flying clothesline to Cade. Scoop slam to Cade and JTG tags in. Shad slams JTG on Cade and JTG covers for two. Scoop slam to JTG. Murdoch tags in after a clothesline from Cade. JTG tries to fight back but is slammed down and covered for two. Cade comes in. A punch drops JTG and Cade tags in. Cade drops Murdoch’s leg onto JTG. Murdoch covers for two. JTG gets beaten in a corner. JTG gets whipped but moves. JTG quickly rolls Murdoch up for three.

– Winners: Cryme Tyme Tyme

Cade and Murdoch are in the ring pissed while Shad and JTG celebrate outside the ring.

Flair video, mostly an older Flair cage match against Harley Race for his first NWA Title win.

HBK is out back heading for the ring.

– Commercial

HBK comes out to the ring while King is talking about WWE.com. HBK does not look at all happy. He’s actually in a dress shirt and suit jacket with a cowboy hat and jeans, though the shirt is not tucked in. “HBK” chants. He says he’s feeling a lot of emotions right now and none of the are particularly good. He was asked to be the Show Stopper, to be… He either got hit in the back with something or someone in the front row behind him said something that bothered him. He then continued to say he was asked to be Mr. Wrestle Mania. Flair asked for his A-game and he has too much respect for Flair to give him anything less. He had the chance last night to pull the trigger, and he did. Now the career of the greatest wrestler that ever lived is over, and he’s the man responsible for it. It’s a burden. Another burden he gets to carry with him the rest of his life.
He starts to leave and then stops. He puts the mic down by the announce side of the ring and leaves. He seems rather choked up and like something else might have been going on out of earshot of the camera. It might have been scripted like that, but he kept looking back and down to the front row of fans behind him.

– Commercial

HBK is out back pacing, looking upset. Regal walks up and says he did what he had to do and Regal thinks it should have been done a long time ago. Then the camera pans and it’s Batista. He’s watching HBK closely as HBK walks away.

Kendrick and London are in the ring. Holly and Cody come out to face them. JR says he talked to them and they worked out their issues.
Cody and Brian tie up. Brian gets backed into a corner, Cody gives a clean break. They lock up and Cody gets a hammerlock on Brian. A side headlock on Brian. Shoulder block to Brian who comes back with a scoop slam. Holly tags in to some heat from the fans. London tags in too. “Let’s go London” and “let’s go Holly” dueling chants. Holly let his guard down and gets the upper hand briefly. Holly chops the heck out of London in a corner. The first time he hits the mat, the second time London flies over the top rope to the floor clutching his chest. Back in the ring Holly covers for two.
Cody tags in anc gets a cross body. Brian tags in. They exchange some amazing moves. Holly gets involved and dropped. Holly comes back in and gets low bridged by London. Brian is on fire but gets covered by Cody. Cody covers for two but London pulls him off Brian. Brian then quickly rolls Cody up for the three and an upset.

– Winners: Kendrick & London

Video of the high points of the match.

Flair video. It’s against Steamboat and the 6th time Flair becomes champion – 1989.

– Commercial

Rev Theory is in the front row.

JR and King talk about how great WM was. They Show video clips from WM set to music. The whole ECW Title match was shown (all 8 seconds of it) and then clips from all the other matches, seemingly in order, except the Bunny Match. It was the most in depth post PPV video I’ve ever seen on RAW the day after – very impressive.

– Commercial

Y2J’s music and he comes out to the ring. Video of the end of the MITB Match from last night. CM PUNK comes, briefcase in hand, out to face him.
The screen locks up a moment at the bell, but comes back. They lock up but Y2J backs off. Y2J comes back with kicks to Punk. Front face lock on Punk. Chants for Punk. Side headlock on Punk. Shoulder block drops Punk. Y2J rolls Punk up for two, Punk reverses it for two. Y2J gets a backslide for two. “Y2J” chants. Punk telegraphs and gets kicked in the chest for it. Y2J takes Punk down and covers for two. A kick to Punk’s Punk. Dueling chants for both wrestlers – the fans are quite into this match. A high knee to Punk’s gut. A back drop to Punk and Y2J covers for two. Y2J hangs Punk up on the top rope. Y2J tries to fly but Punk moves and Y2J eats mat. Y2J sends Punk flying outside. Punk pulls himself to his feet. Y2J goes for the baseball slide but Punk moves. Punk hits a roundhouse kick. Back in the ring a kick from Y2J to Punk. Y2J tries for a lionsault and Punk moves, but Y2J lands on his feet. Y2J might have jammed his knee. Punk gets Y2J up for the GTS, but Y2J elbows out. Y2J goes for the wall but Punk muscles out. Y2J hits the code breaker and covers for three.

– Winner: Y2J

Y2J is smiling in the ring with his belt. Video replay of the code breaker. Punk is outside trying to regroup as the ref checks on him.

Another Flair video. It’s a Royal Rumble. It’s down to Sid, Hogan and Flair. Hogan goes out and helps pull Sid out. Flair won the title when he won that match.

– Commercial

Big Show comes out to a standing ovation? JR mentions the ovation. He has a huge bruise on his jaw, but an even bigger grin on his face. He’s in quite a jovial mood. “Big Show” chants. He says he wants to congratulate Mayweather, and his manager, his six friends, the steel chair and the brass knucks. The greatest wrestler on the planet. But he’s not out here for that, he’s out there for Flair.
At the HOF Flair stood at the podium and said, after breaking into wrestling with Andre, he looked Show in the eye and called him the greatest big man he’s ever been in the ring with. He says no one can beat him one on one, so he’s going back to his roots…
He’s cut off by Khali’s music and he comes down to the ring. “You can’t wrestle” chants.
Show tells Khali to get out of his face as they stand toe to toe.
Show drops the mic and bows up, ready to fight. Show puts his fist in Khali’s face and talks to him. He tells him, without a mic, what he’s going to do to him. Khali backs off and leaves the ring. Huge heat for Khali. He goes up the ramp. Khali stops on the ramp and starts heading back, Show is ready. Then Khali leaves.

Video of Orton yelling for JBL to return then Matt Hardy attacks from behind.

Matt Hardy is out back getting ready to face Orton.

– Commercial

Santino is out back exercising. He shows off as Maria shows up. He asks if she’s back from the vet, getting her rabies shot from Snoopy Dogg. She asks if he will not have this match with her tonight, he’s the only one who can stop it according to Regal. He says he should have been in the MITB Match, but he was reduced to the lowest form of entertainment, the Divas. The Divas should be home making babies and mopping floors. He will only change the Anything Goes Match if she has a batter idea how to handle things. She bitch slaps the taste out of his mouth. He smirks and walks off, she looks nervous.

Orton comes out to the ring. Matt Hardy comes out to huge pop to face him. Matt takes his shirt off as he comes down the ramp. He gets in the ring and tells the ref to ring the bell.
Matt goes right after Orton. “Hardy” chants. A hard kick to Orton’s gut. Orton rolls out and Matt follows. Matt slams him into the barrier and then spears him into the barrier. Forearms to Orton’s head. Orton enters the ring and Matt hangs his neck up on the top rope. A huge elbow in the ring and Matt covers for two. Orton is bounced face first off the corner and then a clothesline to Orton to two. Orton leaves the ring to regroup. Orton gets bounced face first off the stairs. Matt rolls Orton back in the ring and covers for two. A neck breaker to Orton and Matt covers again for two. Huge “Hardy” chants. Matt gets on the corner but Orton slams him to the mat hard.

– Commercial

Orton has a headlock on Matt in the center of the ring. Matt fights out but gets slammed down by his hair. Orton stomps his way around Matt. Orton drops a knee on Matt’s face. Orton covers for two and is pissed he doesn’t get the three. Punches to Matt’s face. “Hardy” chants. Matt gets sat up top, facing out. Orton tries to flip him off but gets elbowed down. Matt hits a moonsault. A bulldog form Matt and he covers for two. Side effect to Orton for two. Matt goes for a twist of fate but gets an upper cut. Matt lands a backslide for two. Matt goes back up but Orton rolls from the ring. Matt gets on the apron and flies onto Orton. Matt hits a twist of fate outside. Matt drags Orton into the ring at the 8 count. Orton seems out of it, but then hits the RKO on Matt for three.

– Winner: Orton

Orton celebrates on a corner. Video of the end of the match.

Dusty, on video from earlier, talks about Flair. He talks about their early times together in the ring and traveling. He says when they were in the ring it was a monumental event. He says they throw words around – legends, icons – but from not on Flair is a national treasure.

– Commercial

Orton is out back holding his head. JBL comes up and stares down at him. He grabs the title belt and looks at it before dropping it in Orton’s lap and leaving.

Maria’s music and she comes out in a blue sequined shirt and white boy shorts. Santino comes out. King says he has a note that says he’s not allowed to be involved in the match in any way, he was hoping to help Maria.
Santino slams Maria down, but every Diva (heels and faces, from all shows) comes out to the ring en masse and attacks him. Guess they didn’t like what he had to say about the Divas! They all beat him down. They grab his limbs fling him high and drop him. They hold him down, Maria salutes and drops a head butt/low blow. She covers him for three.

– Winner: Maria

Maria kick him hard in the bum before leaving the ring. The heels back up the ramp first as the faces celebrate up the ramp together.

– Commercial

Another video look at Flair after he lost his match last night.

Flair’s music and he comes out in a beautiful suit. He gives the fans a ‘Woooooo’ before coming down the ramp. Lillian gives him a heartfelt announcement. He gets in the ring with all the fans on their feet.
‘Woooooooo’ he says last night he wrestled his very last match. He will never, ever wrestle in this ring again. He says he’s not sad about not wrestling, we shouldn’t be sad either. We should rejoice in the fact that he’s had the greatest career in the history of pro wrestling. Even though he lost last night he lost to a great, great, great and better man. He’s had more fun than anyone. He’s been tearing up all day, but it’s good. “Thank you Flair” chants. He thanks the fans for the memories, the support and for making him who he is today. A couple more ‘wooooooo’s and he’s done. Short and sweet. He’s about to hand over the mic and leave when HHH’s music starts.
HHH comes down to the ring. At the bottom of the ramp he says Ric. He says if he thinks the fans in Orlando are the only ones who want to say thank you… If he thinks the ones watching on TV are the only ones who want to say thank you… Then my friend, you have another thing coming.
Flair is tearing up.
HHH says he has to say something from the bottom of his heart. “I love you, man.” His voice cracked on man. “Thank you. Thank. You!” HHH gets on his knees and bows to Flair. He says there’s others who want to say thank you too. He talked to a group of guys earlier and since talking to them his hand has been cramping like this… He holds up four fingers.
Tully, JJ, Arn and Barry come out to HHH’s announcement or their names. The 4 Horsemen. JR says it’s the first time they’ve all been together in the ring since 1988. They all get in the ring clapping and hug Flair. Arn and Flair hold each other, bawling.
Batista comes out next and Flair is bright red and tears are rolling. They hug and cry.
Steamboat comes out to the ring, HHH announcing them all. They hug and hold tight.
Harley Race is escorted to the ring by Michelle and Mickie. Flair is bawling his eyes out (and so am I). They hug tight.
Greg ‘The Hammer’ Valentine comes out next, and they hug.
Dean Malenko comes out holding up four fingers from his time with the Horsemen. They hug.
Y2J is next out. Y2J looks humbled to be there, very sweet to see. They hug.
Cena’s next. He comes out to the ring, not bouncing. He smiles and salutes Flair. Flair grins. They hug closely, almost tenderly, more father/son like.
Then Flair’s family comes out and the tears start again. Reid and David are both there with his daughters and wife. They all hug Flair. He’s a puddle of mush hugging each of his children.
HBK’s music and he comes out with his hat pulled low over his eyes. Flair kisses his wife as HBK comes out. They hug tightly, cling to each other. They talk a bit while the fans cheer. They hug again and talk more. They hug a third time.
HHH comments that HBK and Flair have matching watches. He says they could go on all night, but anyone else who wants to come out and say thank you to Flair, come on out. EVERYONE comes out, Big Show leading the pack. They stop at the bottom of the ramp and line up, clapping for Flair. Funaki, and eve refs (from all the shows) come out.
They start a “thank you Ric” chant that the fans join in on.
Orton is next to Big Show wiping tears from his eyes. More people keep coming out and the chants starts again.
More hugs all around in the ring.
Show gets on the apron and hugs Flair before returning to his spot.
Everyone applauds Flair.
Flair stands in the middle of it all crying and smiling.

Biggest pop
Ric Flair

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