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By Mike Johnson on 2004-04-19 04:00:00

Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler discussed the main event, then went to a video feature on the main event.

Triple H made his way to the ring first. Jim Ross compared him favorably to Ric Flair, Jack Brisco, and Harley Race. Now that's praise. Shawn Michaels then made his way to the ring, and was booed as he came out.

Chris Benoit got a HUGE standing ovation as he made to his ring. Benoit was announced as, "Edmonton, Alberta's own." Benoit got in Michaels' face and held the belt up. The crowd popped huge for that. He did the same to Triple H.

Benoit attacked Triple H and Michaels joined in, only to be attacked by Benoit. Benoit and Michaels hit a double backbody drop on Triple H. Michaels and Benoit began chopping each other. Michaels whipped Benoit into the corner but he cut him off with a double boot and a clothesline. Michaels hit a neckbreaker on Benoit.

Michaels and Triple H brawled back and forth. Triple H hit the high knee. Triple H turned his attention to Benoit. He knocked Benoit to the floor. Michaels hit an inverted atomic drop on Triple H and continued to work over him. Helmsley went for the Pedigree but Michaels retreated.

Benoit started to get back into the ring but was knocked off the apron by both men. He jumped in and hit a release German suplex on each man and began chopping both of them down. He hit a back body drop on Helmsley and began chopping Michaels, who returned them in kind. Benoit whipped Michaels into the corner where he bumped over to the floor.

Benoit went for the Crippler Crossface but saw Michaels getting on the apron and went after Michaels. The crowd was loudly behind Benoit. Benoit threw him into the guard rail and beat him on the floor. Benoit went to the top but was cut off by Triple H. Benoit and Helmsley battled on the turnbuckle. Triple H went for a superplex but Michaels attacked Triple H. Benoit was knocked to the floor facefirst. Michaels hit Helmsley with the Electric Chair and got a two count. Shawn and Helmsley went back and forth. The crowd chanted "Shawn screwed Bret."

Helmsley hit a facebuster on Shawn. Benoit sailed off the top rope with a swandive headbutt on Shawn but Triple H broke up the pin at two. Benoit and Helmsley brawled back and forth. Benoit tossed Triple H to the floor and turned his attention to Michaels. Benoit went for a German suplex but Shawn battled out of it with back elbows.

Shawn leaped over Benoit as he dropped down and ran right into the referee, who was knocked out and rolled to the floor. Benoit turned into a Pedigree attempt but Benoit reversed it into a Sharpshooter attempt. Triple H kicked him off but Benoit locked it on what was called "Bret Hart's Sharpshooter" again and got it. Benoit saw Michaels coming to interfere and floated into a Crippler Crossface.

Shawn went for a sharpshooter on Benoit. The building booed. Earl Hebner hit the ring. Now they really booed. Lawler was screaming "Ring the bell!" Michaels saw Triple H coming and broke the hold. Michaels covered Benoit who kicked out. The crowd chanted, "You screwed Bret." The crowd was all over Shawn. Benoit locked on the Crossface. Michaels looked like he was going to tap but Helmsley broke the hold.

Helmsley and Benoit battled back and forth. Helmsley hit a DDT on Benoit. Triple H got a two count. Helmsley set up Benoit and chopped him. Benoit and Helmsley battled back and forth. Benoit sent Triple H sailing over the ropes to the floor. Benoit went for a belly to back suplex but Shawn clotheslined Benoit and scored a two count. The crowd was all over Shawn with the Bret chants again.

Benoit continued to chop and beat on Michaels. Benoit ended up tossed from the ring, laying next to Triple H. Michaels ascended to the top. Benoit and Helmsley began brawling on the floor. Michaels dove off as both of them were brawling, but Michaels miised and hit the Spanish Announce Table and destroyed it. Michaels was out.

Benoit was tossed into the ringsteps by Triple H, then rolled into the ring. Helmsley went for a pin but Benoit kicked up at two. Helmsley smothered Benoit with a series of rights. Helmsley sent Benoit flying shoulderfirst into the ringpost. He sent Benoit into it again, with Benoit falling out of the ring this time. Triple H brought Benoit back into the ring. Helmsley stood over Benoit as he struggled to his feet and knocked him back down.

Triple H locked in a Camel Clutch. The crowd chanted for Benoit. Helmsley continued to assail Benoit with punches and kicks as the crowd chanted "Let's Go Benoit." Benoit began firing back but Helmsley cut his offense out from under him. Benoit hit snake eyes on Triple H and struggled to pull himself to his feet. Michaels was still out on the floor.

Benoit caught Helmsley coming off the ropes and began hitting his series of German suplexes, releasing Helmsley after the third. Benoit went to the top for the swan dive headbutt, but Triple H moved and Benoit crashed into the mat. Triple H hit the Pedigree but Helmsley was exhausted and couldn't follow up. He finally rolled over for the pin but Michaels broke it up at 2.

Michaels and Triple H battled back and forth with Michaels refusing to stay down. Michaels hit his flying forearm off the ropes. Michaels nips up and slams Helmsley. Michaels went to the top rope for the picture perfect elbowdrop and hit it.

Michaels struggled to make it to his feet and began signaling for Sweet Chin Music. The crowd booed him and chanted, "Let's go Benoit." Michaels connected it on Benoit who was pulling himself up on the apron outside the ring. Michaels was hit with a low blow by Triple H.

Helmsley covered Michaels, who got his shoulder up at two. Helmsley went for the Pedigree but Michaels backdropped Helmsley over the top to the floor. Helmsley pulled the sledgehammer out from under the ring. Helmsley slammed it over Michaels' back. He called for Michaels to get back to his feet but Benoit pulled him out of the ring. He tried to slam Helmsley into the stairs but Triple H blocked and slammed Benoit into them instead.

Helmsley removed the top portion of the stairs. Helmsley set up Benoit for a Pedigree on the steel stairs but Benoit escaped and hit a catapult into the ringpost. Helmsley staggered and fell over the guard rail and landed in the crowd.

Michaels went for Sweet Chin Music but Benoit caught his foot and locked in the Sharpshooter. Michaels fought for the ropes but Benoit pulled him to the center of the ring. Helmsley pulled himself up onto the apron. Michaels finally tapped out.

Benoit celebrated and showed the belt to Michaels, then held it aloft for his hometown crowd to see. Just like last month at Wrestlemania, it was an amazing moment for someone who has given his body and soul for the business and deserves every second of it. A moment that makes you love professional wrestling.

Your winner and still WWE World champion Chris Benoit.

One hell of a main event!

Dave Scherer, Buck Woodward, and myself recorded our Post-Game Audio recap of Backlash, exclusively in the Elite Section immediately after the end of the PPV. If you would like to sign up for our Elite service and three free days, click here.

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