Y2J gets past Punk for payback

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April 01, 2008

ORLANDO, Fla. -- CM Punk is learning that being "Mr. Money in the Bank" has its privileges. But one of its biggest drawbacks is that other Superstars want to use you as a stepping stone and test of their mettle.

On Raw, the newest Money in the Bank winner went head-to-head with one of his opponents from the night before -- Intercontinental Champion Chris Jericho. And Y2J was out to prove that Punk's victory over him and five other Superstars was a fluke.

During the fast-paced match, Y2J countered Punk's Go To Sleep, then pulled the Straightedge Superstar in close and hit the Codebreaker to score the pinfall.

Jericho got the redemption he wanted, but Punk had the satisfaction that he took the Intercontinental Champion to the limit -- proving when the time comes to cash in the Money in the Bank briefcase, he'll be a threat to any champions' gold.

Hands full for Orton

With the WWE Championship shining on his shoulder, Randy Orton crowed about defeating both Triple H and John Cena at WrestleMania, declaring his reign as champion the "Age of Orton." But John "Bradshaw" Layfield had other ideas, telling the third-generation Superstar he deserved a title match as a reward for proving that he was the toughest Superstar on Raw in his Belfast Brawl victory 24 hours earlier.

As Orton yelled at the departing self-made millionaire, Matt Hardy slipped into the ring and attacked the champion from behind. The man who Orton punted in the head months ago, lengthening his recovery from a ruptured appendix, wanted revenge on the Legend Killer. Hardy later demanded a match with Orton -- a request granted by General Manager William Regal.

Hardy had Orton on the ropes, hitting the Twist of Fate on the WWE Champion on the floor. But instead of leaving Orton outside the ring and winning by countout, Hardy rolled him back into the ring, where the cunning champion used his last ounce of strength to shock Hardy with an RKO and cover him for the pinfall victory.

As Orton caught his breath in the locker room, JBL approached the champion, picked up the WWE Title for a long look, and dropped it back in the champ's lap -- another reminder that the millionaire was gunning for Raw's top Superstar and his gold.

Settling the score

Maria begged her former boyfriend, Santino Marella, to call off their Anything Goes Match on Raw. But her former beau refused, saying he thought Divas belonged in the kitchen, not in the ring. Bad idea, buddy!

A cadre of Divas -- Ashley, Victoria, Mickie James, Jillian, Michelle McCool, Kelly Kelly and Melina -- all attacked Santino during the match, aiding Maria.  They slammed him to the mat and held him down, allowing Maria to crush Marella's "grapefruits" with a booming head butt. She rolled up the wounded Italian for an easy 1-2-3 as the Divas celebrated her victory.

Standing Tall

Sporting a bruised jaw from Floyd "Money" Mayweather's loaded punch at WrestleMania, the Big Show said that he was ready to go back to his old championship ways, dominating the WWE as the Largest Athlete in the World.

But the Great Khali begged to differ. The Punjabi Giant interrupted Big Show, and got in the giant's face. Khali yelled at Show in his Punjab dialect, but when the 441-pounder threatened to escalate the confrontation by raising his fists, Khali chose to save it for another day.

Back on the attack

Even the best of friends have disagreements. Paul London and Brian Kendrick seem to have patched up their recent problems, just in time to topple the World Tag Team Champions, Cody Rhodes & Hardcore Holly, on Raw.

In the non-title match, Kendrick was able to roll up a distracted Rhodes and bridge over for the winning pinfall. The two quick-as-a-hiccup high flyers celebrated after the match, as they served notice to the tag-team ranks that the former World and WWE Tag Team Champions are mended, and on the rise.

Brooklyn, Brooklyn…

While one tag team patched up their differences, another popular team of Superstars returned to Raw, challenging the former World Tag Team Champions.

JTG & Shad -- Cryme Tyme -- entered the Amway Arena to an electric welcome for their matchup with Lance Cade & Trevor Murdoch, who saw their hats sold in an impromptu ringside auction the last time they met. The boys from Brooklyn capitalized on a Murdoch mistake, allowing JTG to roll him up for a surprising pinfall victory.

Honoring the Greatest Ever

One night after "Nature Boy" Ric Flair's career came to an end at the Citrus Bowl, all of the WWE Superstars and notable friends and opponents from Flair's illustrious career honored the 2008 Hall of Fame inductee.

The night ended with Shawn Michaels embracing the "Nature Boy," as HBK finally came to terms with his historic win over his good friend, and the burden he carries as the man who ended Flair's career. Read the full story...

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