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Carolina Panthers Running Back Tandem Invade SmackDown
CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Less than a week before their NFL training camp kicks-off, Carolina Panthers running back duo, DeAngelo Williams and rookie Jonathan Stewart, joined the WWE Universe at Charlotte Bobcats Arena to enjoy SmackDown.
"I'm a huge WWE fan. Anytime WWE is in Charlotte, Memphis or Little Rock, I'm there. My love for [sports-entertainment] goes all the way back to when "Stone Cold" Steve Austin was "Stunning" Steve Austin and "Macho Man" Randy Savage," said Williams, the team's leading rusher in 2007.
"It's a ton of fun. Being at the live events is better than watching them on television. I've come to feel like I know all of the Superstars, because I've watched them through the years. I still watch and I'm 25 years old."
It was Williams, the Panthers' 2006 first round draft pick, who contacted Stewart, this year's first round draft pick of the team and No. 13 overall, to ask the former University of Oregon star to accompany him to the show.
"I grew up watching WWE. I think any person who grew up enjoying it will be a fan for life," explained Stewart. "The shows are exciting, and that's what I'm looking forward to."
The tandem mentioned that some of their all-time favorites are "Stone Cold" Steve Austin, Hulk Hogan, The Rock and five-time World Champion Edge, regardless of the fact that he helped banish their all-time favorite Superstar, The Undertaker, after defeating him at One Night Stand.
"I was anticipating [his departure]. The Undertaker has been successful throughout his long career and it was time. I actually rocked an Edge T-shirt tonight, because he's the Superstar who took out the person I liked the most in WWE," recalled Williams, a former University of Memphis All-American.
It was only fitting that the two football stars were present to witness the nuptials between the Rated-R Superstar and his fiancée, SmackDown General Manager Vickie Guerrero.
"I was hoping someone was going to come in and do some special move to prevent Edge from going through with it," Williams said of the wedding. "Edge doesn't need to go through with it!"
The Panthers are scheduled to open training camp July 25 at Wofford College in Spartanburg, S.C. Williams is known as a slasher-type, finding holes in pockets to score. Stewart, throughout his college career was a bruiser with great agility. Together, experts believe the running back duo can help the Panthers return to championship form. Williams feels their one-two punch compares to that of seven-time Tag Team Champions, United States Champion Matt Hardy and his brother, Jeff Hardy.
"They have a wild style, and are high-flying and exciting to watch. Whatever it takes to get the job done, they'll do it. Whether it hurts them or their opponents, they definitely do what it takes. I'm confident [Jonathan and I] will get it done together, just like they do," Williams predicted.