Randy Orton is a WWE SmackDown superstar who could be in line for a major feud on the blue brand.
It was a busy comeback week for Randy Orton. At WWE Survivor Series in Chicago on November 25th, Randy Orton teamed with Cody Rhodes, Seth Rollins, Jey Uso & Sami Zayn to defeat The Judgment Day in an exciting WarGames match.
On WWE television over the next week, Orton did a show opening promo on Raw that set up a match with Dominik Mysterio, which Orton won easily.
The main event of Smackdown on December 1st focused on Randy Orton’s decision about whether he wanted to sign with Raw or SmackDown.
Orton’s return to WWE TV was treated as a big deal because he missed 18 months of action due to a major back injury that required surgery.
It has been reported by Fightful Select that WWE wanted to capitalize off the buzz of Orton’s return. That’s also why they didn’t assign him to a brand during the WWE Draft back in May.
WWE Wanted Randy Orton To Wrap Up Stories
The Fightful update on Orton notes that Randy’s appearance on Raw was done to wrap up some stories. One of those stories involved Jey Uso, who is a top babyface on the Raw brand. When Orton was injured in May 2022, he was in a tag team match with Matt Riddle against The Usos, but a lot has changed since then.
That’s why WWE did a backstage segment on Raw where Jey talked to Orton about how he was a changed man and Orton believed him since Jey isn’t with The Bloodline
In addition to that, Orton had some interactions with The Judgment Day when he turned down Rhea Ripley’s attempt to recruit him into their group. That led to Orton setting up the match with The Judgment Day’s Dominik Mysterio later in the show.
As for his future, Fightful noted that veteran wrestler and WWE Producer Michael Hayes produced the segments for Orton on Smackdown. That’s notable because when Roman Reigns is on WWE TV, Hayes is the one producing those segments as well. Hayes is also usually the person who produces the segments that directly involve Reigns even when the Tribal Chief isn’t on the show.
The main event of Smackdown saw Orton choose to sign with Smackdown due to wanting to get revenge on The Bloodline for injuring him in May 2022. It certainly could lead to Orton challenging Roman Reigns for the Undisputed WWE Universal Title at the Royal Rumble in January, but that’s not official yet.
As for Randy Orton’s WWE contract, it has been reported that his deal expires in late 2024, but if WWE adds 18 months of injury time to it then it would go until early 2026.