Pulse Wrestling’s Real-Time Coverage of WWE RAW for 3/31/2008

Tonight is a MUST SEE show!  Hopefully you got it on DVR or are lucky enough to be in Canada to catch the replays.  Ric Flair gets a send off of major proportions.  A new challenger steps up for Randy Orton.  You have classic wrestling and all else, an exciting two hours!  Watch the show or better yet, read the report!  There’s even a bonus for you doing so, but I won’t spoil that one. 

Recap of Flair/Michaels is shown.

Time to get RAW! Pyros shoot everywhere and no one is reported injured tonight! John Cena’s music plays…Followed by Triple H’s music…followed by that sneak, Randy Orton. He comes out and he utters the best line of the night.

“Expecting someone else?”

Randy Orton goes through the list of people he has beaten, whether if it was by DQ or pinfall, he is still the Champion. Forget the Hulkmania Era. Forget the Attitude Era. We are living in the Age of Orton.

This brings out the self-proclaimed Wrestling God. He agrees that Cena and Triple H does not deserve a rematch, but JBL does! He calls his match a lucky win. He even questions his whole title reign! JBL’s title reign was about dominance. He declares himself as the #1 Contender to the WWE Title and he WANTS THE TORCH BACK! Randy wants to know who the Hell JBL is. He rants and raves at JBL and Matt Hardy beats the holy hell out of Randy Orton!

Commercials.

Backstage Matt Hardy gets into it with William Regal. Matt wants Orton tonight! Regal says he will think about it.

In the ring, Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch are awaitting their competition.

“BRINGIN DA HOOD TO YOU!”  It’s about the Money, Money…Yeah, Yeah!

Lance Cade & Trevor Murdoch v. Cryme Tyme
Tag Team Match

Cryme Tyme dominate the early proceedings of the match, but the rednecks take control, isolating JTG. J.R. makes an innuendo about JTG’s “staying power”. JTG wins the match with a rollup.

Winners: Cryme Tyme
Grade: C-

We take a trip down memory lane to Starrcade 1983 as Flair takes on Harley Race inside the Steel Cage!

Shawn walks.

Commercials.

Shawn makes his way to the ring without his smile. He lost it last night in ending Flair’s career. That’s why he is the Heartbreak Kid. He is feeling emotional. He was asked to be Mr. Wrestlemania, the Showstopper, and all that. He gave Flair his A game last night. Last night, he put Old Yeller down. Him ending Flair’s career is a burden he will carry for the rest of his life. Lucky him. That was awkward…

Jericho v. Punk tonight!
Hardy v. Orton is OFFICIAL!

Commercials.

Editor’s Note:  From here on is live Play-By-Play.

We return with Shawn Michaels and William Regal sharing a light heart to heart.  Batista gives him a real bad look and Shawn walks off.  Here’s Spanky…err, Kendrick & London in the ring to face off against the World Tag Champions!

Paul London & Brian Kendrick v. Hardcore Holly & Cody Rhodes
Non-title Tag Match

Good to see the young guys back together again.  Rhodes and Kendrick lock up and they get no dice.  Kendrick is flipped over and he lands on his feet.  Shouldertackle by Rhodes and Kendrick gets a sloppy powerslam for two.  Holly gets tagged in and he works with London.  Another lockup and London gets a couple jabs in until Holly takes him to school of Hard Knocks!  London gets tossed back in the ring and a vicious lariat gets two.  Who pissed in his coffee tonight?  Rhodes gets involved and he gets a cross body overcorrected for a one count by London.  Kendrick gets in and attacks anything that moves until Rhodes nails a bulldog.  London takes Holly out and Kendrick bridges Rhodes for three!

Winners:  Paul London & Brian Kendrick
Grade:  C+

The Tag Champions are humbled.

We get a Flair Farewell from Wrestle War 1989.  Flair v. Steamboat was a true five star match.  Flair will give his farewell tonight!

Commercials.

Rev Theory is with us tonight!  We take a trip back to last night and do a quick review of Wrestlemania.  It was pretty good to say the least.  I’ll have the Wrestlemania Report Card at the end of this report tonight, so just wait for it.

The Age of Orton is upon us as Randy Orton takes on Matt Hardy tonight!  However, Mr. Money in the Bank, CM Punk, gets Y2J NEXT!

Commercials.

We are back and this is your highlight of the night!  Last night was awesome with Punk winning Money in the Bank.

Chris Jericho v. “Mr. Money & the Bank” CM Punk
Standard Match

The bell rings and they circle the ring.  Lock up in the center gets no dice.  Now they have a kick contest for no dice, but Jericho gains the upperhand with a kick to the spine.  Punk is back up and he has a wrist lock to which Jericho gets back up.  Shoulderblock by Jericho connects and we get a rollup sequence.  Backslide by Jericho gets two before Punk gets a kick to the back for one.  Jericho sees into Punk’s minds and gets a stiff kick for two.  HUGE CM PUNK CHANTS!  They deck it out, but Jericho nails a lariat, followed by a back splash for two.  Punk gets hunged out to drive, but Jericho misses the springboard dropkick and loses a few teeth.  Punk scores a roundhouse kick from the outside.  Springboard tomahawk chop sends Jericho to the corners.  DUELLING Y2J/PUNK CHANTS NOW!  Punk evades the Lionsault and he gets the kick to the face, but misses the bulldog.  Jericho misses the bulldog… GTS try by Punk… LIONTAMER, not locked in!  Jericho gets the Codebreaker for the win!

Winner:  Chris Jericho
Grade:  B+

We go back to the 1992 Royal Rumble, which saw Flair win the WW(F)E Championship!

Commercials.

As a special addendum, Pulse Wrestling’s resident ROH expert, Pulse Glazer chimes in on Punk/Jericho.

This is an indy fan’s dream match.  Jericho and Punk did some minor mat wrestling early, establishing Jericho has an advantage there.  Punk fought back, showing himself to be the superior striker. As the match developed, Punk managed to mostly stay one step ahead of Jericho by counterring the classic Jericho spots like the baseball slide, lionsault, and Walls of Jericho. Unfortunately for Punk, that nasty mat advantage asserted itself with a Codebreaker, a newer move that Punk had no preparation for. Jericho defeats Punk (Pin, Codebreaker, *** 1/2)  They packed that short match with storytelling goodness and stiffness.  Give these guys 20 minutes on Pay Per View NOW!”

I wholeheartedly agree.  Back to the show where Big Show moans and groans about losing to Floyd Mayweather, his manager, six bodyguards, a steel chair, and some brass knuckles.  Big Show isn’t out here to piss on the fire, but he is out here to pay homage to Ric Flair.  Flair said that Big Show is the best big man in the business.  Out comes the one man that can stand up to the Big Show, the Great Khali.

From an indy dream match to a “You Can’t Wrestle” chants directed at Khali.  “Show’s gonna kill you” chants now and Khali backs off from the Big Show.  J.R. says that this is a confrontation of epic proportions.  Sure…whatever.

Earlier tonight, Matt Hardy kicks Orton’s ass.  I must had missed some good stuff. Hardy/Orton is NEXT.  Please don’t tell me Santino and Maria is the main event.  Please…

Commercials.

Backstage, Santino practices his kama sutra…for the lack of a better term.  Maria walks by and she doesn’t understand why Santino wants a No Holds Barred Match against Maria.  He’s upset that he wasn’t in Money in the Bank.  Women should be home having babies.  The match is on tonight unless Maria has another idea for him to get his release.  That merits a slap, Stephanie McMahon style.

On a side note, WWE must be booking this to see what sticks.  Orton retaining the title at Wrestlemania was certainly one of those deals. 

Randy Orton v. Matt Hardy
Non-Title Standard Match

Slugfest to start as Hardy is in control.  Back drop by Hardy and he nails a kick in the ribs.  The fight spills to the outside and Hardy is dishing it out to the champion.  Orton tries to keep Hardy off him, but Hardy gets a near fall.  To the corners we go and Orton gets introduced to the turnbuckle.  Lariat by Hardy gets TWO!  Orton rolls out of the ring and Hardy is in hot pursuit.  Back inside, Hardy gets a one count.  Neckbreaker by Hardy gets two!  Hardy is relentless and Orton sends him to the corner.  Hardy climbs the turnbuckle and Orton SWEEPS THE LEG, causing Hardy to crash and burn and we take a break.

Commercials.

Back to the action and Orton proves why he is a champion.  Hardy fights out of the headlock, but Orton drops Hardy and he stomps randomly.  He drops the knee for two.  Orton puts Hardy on the turnbuckle and he looks for a superplex.  Hardy sends Orton off and he nails a moonsault for two!  BULLDOG by Hardy gets TWO!  The longer the match goes, the better it gets.  SIDE EFFECT CONNECTS!  That gets TWO!  TWO!  Hardy looks for the Twist of Fate, but Orton nails an uppercut!  Hardy gets a backslide for two!  Neckbreaker by Hardy and he goes to the ropes.  Orton rolls out of the ring and Hardy dives out..TWIST OF FATE ON THE OUTSIDE!  Back inside the ring, Orton gets a RKO out of nowhere for the three!

Winner:  Randy Orton
Grade:  A

Earlier today, Dusty Rhodes pays homage to Ric Flair.  He calls Ric Flair a national treasure.

Wrestlemania 24 recap.

Commercials.

Backstage, JBL stands over Randy Orton who is still tired from his war against Hardy.  He eyes the WWE Title and walks.  Face turn for JBL?  You don’t say.

Maria v. Santino Marella
Anything Goes…

William Regal has officially banned Jerry Lawler from interfering in this match.  The bell rings and this is going to get ugly.  He slams Maria down, but the entire diva contigent hits the ring and they beat him up.  Maria nails the headbutt to the nuts and that scores the win.

Winner:  Maria
Grade:  N/A (Santino got owned, so I can’t fail this match.)

Tomorrow Night on ECW:  The Kane Era BEGINS!

Commercials.

Last night, Ric Flair wrestled his last five star match.  Tonight, is his farewell.  We say goodbye to a legendary icon and a Hall of Famer. 

WOOOOOOOOO!  Flair is out and he is stylin’ and profilin’.  He reminds us that he wrestled his last match last night.  He says he won’t wrestle again and he gets boos from the crowd.  Flair isn’t said, he is happy.  He puts over Shawn Michaels, who gets booed.  “Thank You Naitch” chants from the crowd.  He thanks the fans for making him who he is today.  His music plays and he is about to leave.

But wait…  Triple H is here and he is making an appearance.  He says that there are others that want to thank him for all he has done in this business.  Triple H thanks him for everything he has done and he bows to him.  We get the Four Horseman back on television!  They exchange pleasantries and Batista makes his way down the aisle.  He gets in the ring and he hugs Ric as well.

OH MY GOD!  They even have Ricky Steamboat!  This is truly phoenominal!  Even Harley Race comes out to the ring, flanked by Michelle McCool and Mickie James.    Flair is shedding tears as Greg Valentine makes his way down the ramp.  Dean Malenko comes out and this is too much for me.  This is a lot of history in the ring right now.

Now it’s time to break the walls down as Chris Jericho makes his way to pay his respects.  And now for a HUGE POP…John Cena!  Even Flair’s family make their way down and Flair is tearing up badly.  There has to be one more person, the very man who retired Flair himself, Shawn Michaels.  He comes out to NO REACTION!  Once they hug, the reaction comes back.  It’s noticed that Flair and Michaels are wearing the same watch.  The locker room empties and all the stars from all the brands make their way to the ring.  Flair exchanges more pleasantries as this is a real feel good moment here.  This is Brand Unity.  And one thing is for certain, by the title of the song playing…

“You’ll Never Change”

Show Over.

The RAW Report Card

Cryme Tyme d. Lance Cade & Trevor Murdoch:  C-
Brian Kendrick & Paul London d. Hardcore Holly & Cody Rhodes:  C+
CM Punk d. Chris Jericho:  B+
Randy Orton d. Matt Hardy:  A
Maria d. Santino Marella:  N/A
Extra Credit:  Ric Flair’s Farewell

The Final Grade for WWE RAW 03/31/2008:  B+

Bonus Content:  Wrestlemania 24 Report Card

John Bradshaw Layfield d. Finlay: B-
CM Punk wins Money in the Bank: A-
Batisa d. Umaga: D+
Kane d. Chavo Guerrero: N/A
Shawn Michaels d. Ric Flair: A+
Beth Phoenix & Melina d. Maria & Ashley: D-
Randy Orton d. Triple H & John Cena: A-
Floyd Mayweather d. Big Show: C+
The Undertaker d. Edge: A+
Extra Credit:  4 Matches with A- or Better

The Final Grade for Wrestlemania 24:  B+

Showing the Love

Check out all the columns, posts, and reports from a Wrestlemania-filled week right here on Pulse Wrestling. Everyone pitched in and it showed the importance for the event.  I could pimp individual authors and columnists, but the list would be neverending.  Everyone deserves a pat on their back for their hard work.

That’s all from me.  See you in seven.

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