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You called, Austin answered
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- When it came to electing the right special guest referee for Cyber Sunday's World Heavyweight Title Match between Batista and Undertaker, you emphatically made your voices heard in the home of democracy. An unbelievable 79 percent chose "Stone Cold" Steve Austin over officiating candidates Mick Foley (11 percent) and JBL (10 percent), and the Texas Rattlesnake did not disappoint. Leaving our fans in D.C. stunned -- and Foley and JBL Stunnered in the ring -- Austin reinforced your voting faith in his refereeing capabilities.
Contrary to popular belief -- specifically, his own -- John "Bradshaw" Layfield's weeks of endless, egotistical self-politicking did not earn him the nomination to officiate over the match of the year, and arguably the greatest victory in Batista's career. The self-professed "Wrestling God" even wore a black-and-white striped referee's shirt throughout the entire Cyber Sunday broadcast; ran an elaborate "Friends of JBL"-paid advertisement that depicted him as "a great American for a greater America"; and took both verbal and physical potshots at Mick Foley. Yet in the end, none of it would be enough to overcome the masses' "Stone Cold" selection.
Even Foley, a beloved fan favorite and Hardcore Legend who has served as the man in the middle on multiple occasions, would run far behind Austin in the polls Sunday night. However, he'd earn unanimous approval in D.C. while practice-officiating over life-sized Fathead representations of Batista and Undertaker in the locker room area. While there, he'd also assert that JBL's recent threats to screw over both Superstars in the championship contest had made him the biggest fathead in the arena.
When it came time for WWE announcer Todd Grisham to present the final voting results, both JBL and Foley were already in the ring, and in each other's faces. And no sooner had Austin been declared as the special guest referee than all hell broke loose between the Hardcore Legend and "Wrestling God." Heading to the ring in less-than-official referee gear -- a "Been There, Destroyed That" T-shirt and jeans -- Stone Cold wasted no time in asserting his authority, flattening Foley with the Stunner. JBL snuck up and landed a series of blows on the hell-raising ref, only to suffer the same bone-jarring fate moments later.
With dual Stunners restoring order to the chaos that had ensued up to that point, Stone Cold had provided something extremely invaluable for Batista, Undertaker and our fans attending Cyber Sunday in D.C. He enabled the World Heavyweight Champion and The Deadman to focus on their reborn rivalry without having to concern themselves over outside interference or other unexpected influences. Austin allowed both titans to settle their differences with as much leeway as any official could permit, and he ensured that no one would contest his official decisions. Not that anyone in their right mind would, of course.