In some great news, WWE doctors have cleared Randy Orton following the concussion he suffered during his match with Brock Lesnar at WWE SummerSlam in August, according to Wrestling News.
It’s still unclear whether the finish to the match was scripted or not as Lesnar opened up a gash in Orton’s head which required 10 staples to close shut. Some outlets have reported that it was scripted, but it doesn’t make much sense to have Randy suffer such a serious injury for a fight.
In the lead up to WWE Backlash, Orton started doing promos that were to lead to a match with Bray Wyatt at WWE Backlash but ultimately wasn’t able to get cleared by doctors prior to the match. It led scrambling on the part of WWE to find a solution for the scheduled match as they ended up having Bray take out Randy backstage early in the night.
— WWE (@WWE) September 14, 2016
SmackDown Live commissioner, Shane McMahon, and general manager, Daniel Bryan, eventually decided to have Kane take Randy Orton’s place against Bray Wyatt at WWE Backlash. The WWE then allowed Orton to get involved in the match as he hit an “RKO Outta Nowhere” on Wyatt, which was followed by a chokeslam by Kane to win the match.
Orton finally fought Wyatt this past Saturday night at a house show. Wrestling News reports that while Randy did take some bumps, he seemed to wrestle more cautiously than normal as he eases himself back into action.
Now that Orton seems like he’s finally ready to return to action, it’ll be interesting to see what direction the WWE creative team chooses to go with his character. The Viper is still one of the most popular wrestlers in WWE, and he’s one of the biggest names on the SmackDown Live roster. The WWE Universe loves and respects him, which could make it difficult to find the proper storyline for him on SmackDown.
Obviously, the current plan is to have Randy Orton continue his current feud with Bray Wyatt until at least WWE No Mercy on October 9. Following the outcome of that storyline, the creative team could have Orton begin a feud with Dean Ambrose, John Cena or A.J. Styles, who are the three biggest names on the SmackDown Live roster.
— WWE (@WWE) September 12, 2016
Another route would be to let The Apex Predator go after The Miz and his Intercontinental Championship belt. Aside from the WWE World Heavyweight Championship, the Intercontinental belt is the top belt on SmackDown which could be an avenue for the creative team to go with Orton, although it still seems below his talent and popularity level.
About the only other option would be to use Randy to help get some of the younger guys on the SmackDown roster over. This is the worst option of them all as Orton still has years left in him as long as he can find a way to stay healthy. It’ll be much easier for him to do that now that he won’t have to fight a maniac like Brock Lesnar who doesn’t mind doing real damage to opponents.
Where the WWE decides to go next with Randy Orton will tell how much they feel he has left in the tank. If they put him in a storyline to fight for a title, then it’s obvious that they believe he can still be a big contributor for the next couple of years. If the WWE decides to use Randy Orton as a veteran to get the young guys over, then it’s obvious that they’re planning for his departure.
[Featured Image by WWE]