RJ’s Two Cents - My 5 Favorite Superstars From the Ruthless Aggression Era (No. 5)
By RJ Marceau
As many of you know I became a WWE fan in 2002 and watched the entirety of the Ruthless Aggression Era. The WWE saw the rise of future stars of Batista, John Cena, Brock Lesnar and Randy Orton while legends like Hulk Hogan, The Rock and Stone Cold ended their main WWE runs.
As a new fan I didn’t fall for the big marquee names and really supported the new up incomers to the WWE. Eventually I will have to make a list for my top 5 favorite of all time but it will take a lot of thinking so I decided to make a list of my top 5 Ruthless Aggression Era superstars.
My #5 superstar on my list won the United States Championship on his very fist night in the WWE. Still don’t know? Well, he had an afro and spits in the face of people who don’t want to be cool. It’s Carlito Caribbean Cool. Carlito had multiple vignettes with him spitting apples in peoples' faces and the afro/Caribbean theme of his gimmick had me interested right off the bat. When he debuted on SmackDown and defeated John Cena I got his shirt immediately. Carlito would float around SmackDown and Raw for years but didn’t do much besides winning the United States and Intercontinental Title once. He was always in midcard feuds but didn’t ever get the proper push.
I was always entertained with Carlito’s Cabana especially the episode of Raw when he had all the #1 contenders in the Cabana when John Cena came out and ripped them all. Carlito eventually teamed with Chris Masters but the WWE had them get squashed at WrestleMania 22. Carlito would team with his brother Primo in 2008 and won the Unified WWE Tag Team Titles at WrestleMania 25. After dropping the titles to Chris Jericho and Edge, Carlito did next to nothing for the rest of his WWE run.
The potential he had was uncanny but the WWE never let him even hold the title on SmackDown. Instead they had the title on Edge, Batista, The Undertaker and The Great Khali from late 2006 to middle 2008. Batista and Edge were injured multiple times but they still couldn’t give Carlito a bone and give him a title run. The WWE didn’t do Carlito any favors by turning him face and heel multiple times in his 3-4 year stint in the company.
Carlito eventually got frustrated with his position in the company but was released due to a violation of the WWE Wellness policy and refusing to go to rehab for a painkillers addiction. Carlito was gone from the WWE for about 4 years when he returned to help induct his father, Carlos Colon to the WWE Hall of Fame on the WrestleMania XXX weekend. The probability of Carlito returning to the WWE has to be minimum since he left on bad terms but I would be excited to see Carlito return.
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