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COMMENT





Carlito expects some apple-spitting respect
By SCOTT ZERR - Edmonton Sun


Carlito

Wrestlers, by trade, have split personalities. There's the in-ring persona, the larger-than-life character that appears before fans and then scurries away when the bright lights are dimmed. Then there's the real-life person, the everyday guy who just happens to be jacked up with muscles but is often much more mellow and low-key than the image that fans see.

Because these two personalities exist in one body, there are those occasions when they overlap and what's left is a sometimes confusing melding of the two.

Meet Carlito.

Ask him about his infamous apple-spitting routine, which he'll surely bring to Tuesday night's World Wrestling Entertainment Smackdown! show at Rexall Place in Edmonton, and you get the in-character response.

"If someone shows me disrespect, I spit in their face, and apples are what I like to eat," says Carlito.

Then inquire about his development into a hot WWE prospect, which began under the tutelage of his father Carlos Colon -- regarded as the Stu Hart of Puerto Rico -- and the questioner is caught between the personas.

"I had a lot of influences, because Puerto Rico is a melting pot for all types of wrestling. Wrestlers came from all over the world and showed their different styles. I got to see those styles and put something together that took in all kinds of shapes to create my own style that is traditional and yet innovative. I did get a lot of advice from my father, but I was already great."

The 234-pounder made a big splash in his WWE debut, wrestling the U.S. championship from of John Cena in his very first Smackdown! match last October.

"There are many things that Carlito can bring to the table," he says about himself. "The first thing is definitely my coolness. Edmonton has never seen anything like that before."

Hold the phone. Ever heard of a guy named The Rock?

"Carlito is way cooler than The Rock," he says.

"Compared to me, the Rock has no coolness at all. Carlito has way more juice than the Rock. ... I'm bringing a lot of coolness to Edmonton and I'm going to teach the people there how to be cool like Carlito."

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