Carlito was a talented wrestler who just knew how to get a reaction from the crowd and irk his opponents at the same time.
One of the best debuts that WWE ever witnessed was Carlito defeating John Cena in his very first match and that too for the United States Championship. He may have been a mid-carder but WWE made sure to use him the right away and boy did he deliver. Carlito is best remembered for using an apple as a prop and his convoluted catchphrase, “I spit in the face of people who don’t want to be cool.” He was a talented wrestler who just knew how to get a reaction from the crowd and irk his opponents at the same time. In this article, we will take a look at some of his rivals during his time in WWE.
Carlito had one of the most shocking debuts in the history of WWE. On his very first day, he had the privilege of beating the face of the company John Cena for the United States Championship. Cena was just coming off a Best of Five series with Booker T to win the US Title, only to lose it to Carlito. The apple eating villain was then involved in a storyline where his bodyguard Jesús stabbed Cena in a nightclub. Carlito held the United States Championship for forty-two days, losing it back to Cena after suffering a legitimate injury.
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Carlito once again did the same thing to Shelton Benjamin that he did to John Cena. He defeated Shelton Benjamin (thanks to some help) for his Intercontinental Championship on his RAW debut. Shelton would however get a rematch and the result would be a solid bout between the athletic babyface Benjamin and the apple spitting heel Carlito. But he would once again resort to heel tactics to win, using an exposed turnbuckle to turn Benjamin’s offence against him. Their rivalry however did not end there as Carlito defeated Shelton once more in a qualifying match for the WWE championship.
Carlito and Chris Masters had an intense and bitter rivalry but something surprising happened before that. Both men were in a tag team and even featured on WrestleMania. Together they competed against Big Show and Kane for the World Tag Team Championship at WrestleMania 22. They lost when Masters accidentally attacked Carlito. In the aftermath, Carlito turned face and the two had a match to open up Backlash. While some fans were critical of Masters’ performance in this match, Carlito was the star here, with the live crowd being extremely invested in his success.