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Raymond Cast Tempers Its Love at Tribute

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It was a love-in, albeit with qualifications, as the cast and crew of Everybody Loves Raymond were honored at a Museum of Television and Radio fundraiser at the Beverly Hills Hotel on Monday night.

Also saluted was Barbara Walters, 73, who attracted the likes of California first lady Maria Shriver and Michael Douglas to sing her praises, Reuters reports. Oprah Winfrey, 50, sent a video message saying: “If there hadn’t been a you, there couldn’t have been a me.”

But it was those associated with Raymond that apparently sent tongues clacking. For starters, Brad Garrett, who’s been said to have a hot-and-cold relationship with his colleagues, was missing in action.

Costars Peter Boyle and Doris Roberts tempered their remarks about the show, which is in its final season – obviously against their wishes – after a highly successful run of nearly a decade.

“It’s been a great nine years,” Boyle, 69, who plays star Ray Romano’s hardheaded father, told the black-tie crowd. “I could do a few more, but I don’t want to say anything more about that.”

Added Roberts, 73, who plays the show’s unflappable mother: “I wish it could go on forever, and it probably will in some way.”

In his remarks, CBS chief Leslie Moonves, 55, put into perspective the network’s relationship with the show’s principals. “Negotiating with Doris is like negotiating with your mother,” he said. “You can’t win.” Regarding the missing man: “Negotiating with Brad is like negotiating with John Gotti.”

Said Romano, 47, of Moonves, who agreed to make the comic TV’s highest-paid performer with a per-episode salary of more than $2 million: “Like my father, I go to him when I need money.”