Monday Night Raw – April 11, 2005

Monday Night Raw
Date: April 11, 2005
Location: Mark of the Quad Cities, Moline, Illinois
Commentators: Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler

Things should be getting back to normal around here as we are now into the regular shows instead of last week’s Wrestlemania fallout. Somehow that means more HHH this week, as last week he announced his rematch clause. Odds are that comes at Backlash at the end of the month, because we need to build to a HHH match you see. Let’s get to it.

Opening sequence.

Trish Stratus/Molly Holly vs. Victoria/Christy Hemme

Dang we’re starting with a match? Molly and Victoria fight over arm control to start with Victoria grabbing some armdrags. The dancing moonsault gets two and it’s off to Christy for the kicks to the leg. The splits legdrop gets two more but Trish gets in a cheap shot from the apron to take over. Trish comes in for a chop to the “chest area” as JR puts it, followed by a choke in the corner.

It’s back to Molly for a basement dropkick and we hit the half crab. That’s broken up and Victoria gets to come in for some elbows to the face. Trish breaks up the Widow’s Peak though, meaning it’s back to Molly for some hair takedowns. Another shot hits Trish and Molly’s handspring elbow does as well, allowing Christy to grab a rollup for the pin.

Rating: D. They’re trying with Christy and while it’s not working, they are in fact trying. I know the women’s division isn’t much at the moment but you can’t just throw someone out there with the bare minimum of training and expect it to work. She looks like she’s working as hard as she can so the fault isn’t with her, as she has no business being in this spot.

Not the worst match here, though it was Molly’s last regular match in the company. She hasn’t said why she left but it’s sad to see her go. While she wasn’t the most exciting member of the roster, she was always good for a solid performance and her backstage reputation is one of the best you’ll ever see. The division could use her here (or now) but she has more than earned the right to walk away.

Post match Trish gets knocked to the floor so here’s Kane to chase her off in revenge for what Trish did to Lita last week. Points for continuity at least.

We look at Randy Orton’s shoulder surgery in Birmingham, Alabama. It’s some graphic footage as we see the surgery taking place. They do a nice job of mentioning that Undertaker and Batista hurt the shoulder, which is always better than saying “oh he’s hurt and needs surgery”. He’ll be out about four months.

We go to the women’s locker room where Stacy Keibler is glad for what happened. Candice Michelle wants Batista to take her out and pin her. Maria agrees but they all freak out when Kane chases Trish inside. But they’re cool with the camera in there broadcasting live. They were watching the video on the monitor, so what was airing on the monitor when it was filming them and they were still looking at the monitor? These things keep me up nights.

Coach talks to Muhammad Hassan, who thinks Shawn Michaels should go home and watch some unfunny American sitcom instead of getting a beating. Keeping his promos short is better. The delivery is good but he repeats the same stuff so many times that it gets old.

Here’s HHH for a chat because it’s HHH and this is Raw. He hypes up Batista’s first interview as World Champion but he better enjoy it because it’s borrowed time. The rematch is signed for Backlash and while Batista was awesome at Wrestlemania, HHH will find a weakness before Backlash. HHH is ready this time now because Batista’s eyes have betrayed him.

There is one thing that Batista fears and it will make HHH an eleven time World Champion. That would be the Pedigree and all of this will be set right at Backlash. Cue Hurricane to interrupt, talking about how the last time he saw HHH, he was wearing a crimson mask. HHH calls him a green tomato, so Hurricane calls him out for beating up both he and Rosey a few weeks back. Tonight, it’s payback! As well as CLOBBERING TIME. The double team is on in a hurry with a splash in the corner and a double clothesline to the floor. HHH grabs a mic and says get a ref out here.

HHH vs. Rosey/Hurricane

The referee won’t let HHH use a chair so he gets knocked down again. We take a very early break and come back with HHH punching Hurricane down for two and grabbing a front facelock. The spinebuster plants Hurricane but he gets a boot up in the corner so HHH can stagger a lot. The diving tag brings in Rosey for the spinning legdrop and the running splash in the corner crushes HHH again. It’s back to Hurricane for a guillotine legdrop but he goes up again and gets crotched this time. Rosey gets tied up in the ropes like a goof and the Pedigree finishes Hurricane.

Rating: D. This was exactly what you had to expect here and there is nothing wrong with that. Hurricane and Rosey aren’t doing anything at the moment so having HHH beat them up doesn’t hurt anything. Rosey getting stuck in the rope was as perfect of a way for him to lose as you could get as he’s a big goof who can’t do anything right most of the time.

Post match HHH says that’s a warning for Batista, who is getting Pedigreed tonight. Rosey gets a Pedigree on the floor for a bonus.

Video on the Australia tour.

Batista and Chris Benoit have a moment backstage.

Chris Masters highlight package, because he’s done enough to have a highlight package.

Chris Masters vs. Seth Skyfire

Skyfire was a good hand from OVW around this time. Masters works on the arm to start before kneeing away in the corner. A heck of a toss sends Skyfire flying and he gets Polish Hammered out of the air. The Master Lock finishes Skyfire in a hurry as what sound like BORING chants start up.

Post match Masters offers to put up $1000 to anyone who thinks they can break the Master Lock. So he’s the modern Sgt. Slaughter?

We look at Muhammad Hassan attacking Shawn Michaels last week.

Shawn Michaels vs. Muhammad Hassan

Or not as Hassan does the old “beat this guy before you get me” deal, meaning it’s Daivari time instead.

Shawn Michaels vs. Daivari

The chase lets Daivari stomp away until Shawn starts chopping away so Hassan runs down. That’s enough for Daivari to snap his throat across the top and the beatdown is actually on, including a guillotine legdrop for two. The chinlock goes on for all of a few seconds before Shawn fights up and hits the forearm. Hassan breaks up the top rope elbow so Shawn goes after him, allowing Daivari to try and bring in the bell. That’s enough of a distraction for Hassan to hit Shawn low and give Daivari a fast pin.

Post break, Bischoff tells Shawn he can face Hassan and Daivari at Backlash but he has to get a partner.

It’s time for the Highlight Reel, with Chris Jericho being proud of how Money in the Bank (“My idea.”) went. However, something has been bothering him and that was the way he lost the Intercontinental Title to Shelton Benjamin. Therefore, let’s get his guest out there: Shelton Benjamin.

Shelton doesn’t think much of Jericho’s problems because he had a shot last week and lost. Jericho laughs off Shelton’s six months as champion because he’s held the title seven times (for a total of about six months between those seven reigns). Shelton makes it serious by saying he can take his fist and make more hits than the last Fozzy album so the fight is on. Neither came off great here, though the Fozzy line was good.

Smackdown rebound.

Kane finds Lita, who is VERY pleased with what he did to Trish. Kissing ensues, as we completely forget their previous history.

Here’s Shawn for a follow up chat. We get a patriotic speech about how his family has volunteered to go fight before and now he needs a partner who feels as passionately about this as he does. Shawn literally gets down on his knees and begs Hulk Hogan for one more match to a rather positive response.

Christian vs. Chris Benoit

Benoit has a bad arm and Christian has Tyson Tomko with him as usual. Hold on though as Edge comes out for commentary with JR being a bit surprised. Edge: “It takes him a while. The cowboy hat cuts off circulation.” Christian jumps Benoit to start and gets chopped down but an early hammerlock has Benoit in trouble. An enziguri sends Christian back into the corner as Benoit continues to improve when injured.

A trip to the floor goes badly for Benoit so Christian can choke away back inside. Benoit is right back again and takes it to the floor, only to have Christian go right back to the arm. The armbar goes on as Edge rants about how unfairly he has been treated. JR: “Wah wah. If your aunt was more amply endowed, she would be your uncle.” Benoit knocks him hard off the apron and into the barricade as we take a break.

Back with Benoit fighting out of an armbar but charging into a boot to the arm. Christian goes for the turnbuckle pad and the distraction means the small package only gets two. Tomko sneaks in a shot to the arm and JR rants about Edge not complaining about the cheating. JR losing his mind over stuff is almost always entertaining so I’ll take that.

The hammerlock goes on as Lawler complains about JR playing favorites. That’s a new development? Benoit pops off a German suplex but can’t follow up, meaning the armbar goes on. This lets Edge and Lawler tee off on JR for complaining about Christian and predicting all the ways JR will cheer for Benoit’s comeback. Back up and a hard collision gives us a double knockdown as Edge wants to know why Shawn Michaels gets praised for losing at Wrestlemania while no one is talking about his big win.

Benoit snaps off a suplex as Edge goes off about Benoit getting all of Edge’s chances last year. The Sharpshooter goes on but Christian is in the ropes pretty quickly. That’s fine with Benoit who rolls the German suplexes, only to miss the Swan Dive thanks to a Tomko distraction. An Unprettier attempt is countered into the Crossface so Edge takes a chair down to the ring. Benoit is already dealing with Tomko but is fine enough to dropkick the chair into Edge as well. That’s enough of a distraction for the Unprettier to give Christian the win.

Rating: B. This was a very good match that was elevated by the commentary. Edge and Lawler were scoring on JR every chance they had here and JR just had nothing to say to either of them because they were absolutely right. Edge is on a roll right now and that briefcase is making things more interesting than usual. Christian needed a win like this too and the match getting twenty minutes was almost hard to believe.

JR brings out Batista for his first interview as champion. Batista is ready to fight so HHH can come out here and try to Pedigree him. He isn’t worried about HHH, Edge and others gunning for him because it comes with being champion. He’s the predator and the World Heavyweight Champion so he’s on top of the food chain. If anyone wants to try and take his title, he’ll chew them up, spit them out, and enjoy doing it.

The fear HHH sees is in his own eyes because he is underestimating Batista again, and that will be his downfall. Batista doesn’t plan on being a ten time World Champion because he’ll be champion as long as he wants. Cue HHH from behind and the fight is on. A Pedigree attempt is backdropped over the top, so HHH grabs the mic and announces that he’ll face JR next week in Madison Square Garden. I would ask why but the response is just going to make my head hurt.

Overall Rating: D+. This was a complete one match show with nothing outside of the battling Canadians being worth much. Everything else was either bad or just uninteresting, with Chris Masters looking like the latest flop in a long line of them. Hogan/Michaels teaming together could be interesting, but that’s going to be a huge blow to Hassan. Just not a very interesting show, as Wrestlemania is already seeming like a distant memory.

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