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Carlito not cool about missing 'Mania
By TIM BAINES - Ottawa Sun
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Carlito at the fifth annual THQ Superstar Challenge at Detroit's Gem Theatre on Thursday, March 29, 2007.
Photo by Mike Mastrandrea
RELATED STORY: Burke dominates, wins THQ Superstar Challenge
SPECIAL SECTION: WRESTLEMANIA 23 PHOTO GALLERY
SPECIAL SECTION: WRESTLEMANIA 23

DETROIT - While many of WWE's superstars are trading punch for punch, kick for kick, headlock for headlock and table for table at tomorrow night's Wrestlemania, Carlito will be backstage watching, unhappy to be on the sidelines.

"I'm out of Wrestlemania," he says. "Apparently, they had to make space for Kane vs. Khali and Melina vs. Ashley. How can I be at Wrestlemania? If I politic and kiss ass, I should make it.

"I'm not going to cry or be bitter, there's always next year ... and I don't want to get fired.

"But they're showing disrespect by not having Ric Flair at Wrestlemania and even more disrespect by not having Carlito there."

He doesn't like the role he's been given, that of a loveable fan favourite.

"I absolutely hate being a babyface more than anything else," he says.

So while Carlito is steaming, WWE has managed to put together an intriguing lineup for Wrestlemania, perhaps the best in recent years.

John Cena's title reign could come to an end on the receiving end of a Shawn Michaels superkick.

Even more likely is that Batista will lose the championship belt he wears, with The Undertaker keeping his Wrestlemania unbeaten streak alive.

The Money in the Bank Ladder match could be the bout of the night, with Edge, CM Punk, King Booker, Jeff Hardy, Matt Hardy, Finlay, Mr. Kennedy and Randy Orton competing. I'm picking Kennedy for the win (with Punk the darkhorse).

The New Breed (Elijah Burke, Matt Striker, Kevin Thorn and Marcus Cor Von) should beat The ECW Originals (Rob Van Dam, Tommy Dreamer, Sabu and The Sandman).

The Great Khali will survive fire and brimstone and beat Kane.

The amazing Chris Benoit will lose to talented MVP.

Melina should hang onto her title against Playboy Diva Ashley.

And even though Vince McMahon's representative Umaga may beat Donald Trump's Bobby Lashley, you've gotta think referee Stone Cold Steve Austin will ensure that McMahon, The Genetic Jackhammer, goes home bald.

FAME GAME: Jim Ross, Jerry "The King" Lawler The Wild Samoans, Mr. Fuji, Nick Bockwinkel, Mr. Perfect, The Sheik and Dusty Rhodes will be inducted into WWE's Hall of Fame tonight.

RING BITS: Great news for wrestle-holics. The superb Live Audio Wrestling show is now on Sirius through The Score's Hardcore Radio channel ... WWE released Joey Mercury.

HAIR TODAY: Carlito on the McMahon-Trump match: "They've got bad hair, Carlito's got good hair." Would he shave his head? "My hair is not a big part (of my character)," he says. "I would be bald and do what I do ... but I'd ask for a big bonus (if they wanted me to cut my hair)."

CHAVO WANTS TO STAY: Chavo Guerrero told Sun Media that his current WWE deal expires in April. "I love WWE. This is my home. I'd be stupid to leave, but you've gotta do what you've gotta do."

NAKED TRUTH: Mickie James isn't sure if she'd pose for Playboy if she's asked. "Trish never did it. Lita didn't do it," says James. "It's a coin toss (whether I'd pose). I'll have to cross that bridge when I come to it."

RELATED LINKS

  • More on Carlito
  • More on WrestleMania 23
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  • WWE WrestleMania 23 DVD Set