‘Stone Cold' drops a box-office bomb on Santino

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November 05, 2007

LOS ANGELES -- In the tradition of Hollywood sequels, "Stone Cold" Steve Austin relived one of his greatest Raw moments and opened a can -- nay, a truck full -- of whoop-ass on his most persistent critic, Santino Marella.

After weeks of Marella taunting his acting abilities in The Condemned, the former WWE Champion made it his mission to make the beneficiary of the "Milan Miracle" pay. Like so many other Stone Cold foes before him, Marella didn't have a prayer of keeping his dignity intact … or staying dry.

By night's end he found himself lying in a puddle of suds inside the beer-soaked ring at the sold-out STAPLES Center. He was the victim of a Stone Cold Stunner and a deluge of brew as Austin had driven a beer truck to the ring and hosed down Marella and Maria with ice-cold refreshment. (Watch the video...)

While WWE.com touted Austin's appearance at Raw all week, Marella stood defiant and did not believe the Rattlesnake would show. He told our fans that Stone Cold couldn't act his way out of a paper bag, and that the chances of Austin appearing in Los Angeles were as likely as his winning an Academy Award.

How wrong he was.

As Marella threatened Austin's close friend, Raw announcer Jim Ross, the familiar glass-breaking sound signaling the presence of Stone Cold crashed over the arena speakers. The crowd roared as Austin stomped to ringside, but the defiant Marella stood his ground in the center of the ring.

Austin told Marella he respected him for saying things that Hollywood executives didn't have the guts to tell him. But the honesty had its limits. When Marella continued to pour on the criticism of The Condemned, Austin ended the critique with a crushing Stunner.

The Rattlesnake then walked to the back and drove a beer truck to the ring. In a déjà vu moment from years past on Raw, Stone Cold opened up a hose and nearly drowned Marella with gallons of ice-cold beer. Then, as Maria pleaded with Austin to stop, Stone Cold drenched the Diva as well.

With Maria and her Italian beau both beer-drenched, the STAPLES Center crowd was ecstatic, giving Austin a standing ovation as he gave our fans a respectful one-finger salute in return from the top of his beer truck.

It was yet another Oscar-worthy performance for Stone Cold on Raw. And for Santino the movie critic, the balcony is now closed … and beer-soaked.

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