Randy Orton stares out another opponent

Top 5 Randy Orton Moments

The last time I did a Top 5 for any wrestler was a bit earlier in the month on my girl Rhea Ripley, the current first lady of The Judgement Day. This time, I’ll be talking about the top 5 Randy Orton moments in WWE. But before I get into all of that, let me give you some background info on Randy.

Background Info

Randy Orton was born on April 1, 1980, into a wrestling family. Bob Orton Jr is his dad and Bob Orton is his grandfather. He also had an uncle named Barry who was also a wrestler. This makes him a third-generation professional wrestler.

Before signing with WWE, he trained at the Mid-Missouri Wrestling Association and also Southern Illinois Conference Wrestling. Eventually, he would move to OVW and win their Hardcore title, twice.

This would lead him to a long career in WWE, a career that spans 20 years. Randy would go on to be called the Legend Killer, The Apex Predator, and The Viper. During his career, he would go on to have 14 WWE World Heavyweight Title reigns and win 2 Royal Rumbles. He would have several momentous RKOs, including one that he did to Nia Jax, and the one he did recently to JD McDonagh at Survivor Series.  Now, let’s get into my favourite top 5 Randy Orton moments.

Randy Orton and Evolution display all their title gold.

#5 Randy Orton and Evolution

Now, I know I’m going to get some slack for where this is placed, but one of my top 5 Randy Orton moments is his role in Evolution. Evolution was a heel wrestling stable from 2003 to 2005. This faction was part of the RAW brand. The group consisted of Randy, Ric Flair, Triple H, and Batista. This was a modern-day version of The Four Horsemen and all four brought their own style to the group.

The group would hold the Intercontinental Championship (Randy), the World Tag Team titles (Ric and Batista), and the World Heavyweight Championship (Triple H). During this time, Randy would hold the Intercontinental Championship for seven months. After, he would go on to face Benoit for the World Heavyweight title, where he would win it before being kicked out of Evolution. While Evolution would come back in 2007 (and from 2013 to 2014), it wasn’t the same as the OG Evolution

While I’m not a fan of Evolution, I can admit that this was one of Randy’s top moments.

Randy Orton in the cage at Survivor Series 2023

#4 Randy Returns to WWE (Survivor Series 2023)

While some would question this being on the list, for me, it was pretty easy. Randy had been gone close to 18 months after being injured. Randy has been injured quite a few times over the years, but this was one where, for me, it personally hit in a way that made me very happy.

I was fortunate to be at my first Survivor Series this year under my own brand in Chicago. And while I knew Randy was coming (hell, I even waved to his wife as she walked by), it was just something to watch everyone, including myself, cheer when his music came on. He was clearly in great shape and when he set up for his RKO, the crowd went nuts. I say all the time how I wasn’t a fan of him growing up, as I tended to side with the faces, but Randy is one of the coolest heels we have ever seen.

Rated RKO make their usual cocky entrance

#3 Rated RKO

I’ve said plenty of times on social media that Edge was someone that, just like Randy, I couldn’t stand as a kid, but as an adult have grown to appreciate him. From 2006 to 2007, Edge and Randy would form the tag team Rated RKO. They could be funny. They could be brutal, and they won. Won often, may I add.

They joined together because of their disdain for DX but would go on to win the tag titles by beating Roddy Pipper and Ric Flair. While this lasted about eight months, I remember how cool I thought their faction name was and how much, looking back, I enjoyed their work during their short stint. They would get back together briefly for only one night on Raw’s 15th anniversary in 2007.

Randy Orton lands a kick on John Cena

#2 Randy and John Cena’s Rivalry

Randy and John’s rivalry would span years. Both sharing the same origins in OVW and being the top stars during The Ruthless Aggression era was sure to have the two of them go head to head. Their feud would include matches such as an “I Quit” match at Breaking Point, Bragging Rights in 2009, and WrestleMania 24. They would go back and forth for the WWE Championship.

Their feud started in 2007. On July 23rd of that year, Randy attacked John after his match and then he was announced to be the number one contender for the WWE Championship. At SummerSlam of that year, they would face off for Cena’s title. John would win. The very next night, Randy would attack John again, and then he would go on to punt-kick John’s dad.

Personally, that cemented Randy as a top heel because he went after John’s family. John would get injured and Randy would get the title; sometime after, there would be a triple threat which included Triple H, but Randy would retain.

While their feud would continue for years, and while many fans would even criticize it, you can’t deny that when it comes to Randy, John was one of his top opponents.

John had this to say about Randy last week.

Screenshot of John's tweet

Cannot celebrate this day without being thankful for all the people who helped and grew along the way. Truly thankful for my time in OVW and @RandyOrton during those years. Take a look back at our final match in OVW! Happy Thanksgiving!

-John Cena


An emotional Randy Orton holds the Big Gold Belt after just winning it.

#1 Randy Becomes the Youngest WWE World Champion

Now, let’s bring it back to what I mentioned earlier in The Evolution section. During Randy’s time with Evolution, Randy would win a battle royal and become the number one contender. By this point, Triple H was also gunning for the title held by Chris Benoit.

On the night of July 26, 2004, Triple H would participate in an Iron Man match with Benoit. Eugene would interfere in this match, and this helped Chris take the lead and retain the title. With Triple H’s losing, Randy would face Chris at SummerSlam 2004.

During the main event, Randy would win by hitting the RKO on Benoit and becoming the new World Heavyweight Champion. At the age of 24, this would make him the youngest World Champion in WWE history. He would also beat Brock Lesnar’s record by doing this. Brock was 25.

In August, Randy would have a rematch with Benoit, a match he’d win, but after that, Batista would hoist him onto his shoulders to celebrate. The celebration would soon change into an assault after Triple H did a thumbs down and Evolution attacked Randy. While he would only hold the belt for 28 days, he did make history.

Randy has done so much over the years and has cemented his legacy in WWE and in the wrestling business, which made it hard for me to choose my top 5, but I think I did a pretty good job. What do you think?

Until next time, I’ll catch you later.

Written by Katrina

Katrina, who is from New York goes by the name Katrina Storm in the wrestling world. Outside of being a mom, Katrina is a writer, podcaster, ring announcer, an interviewer, color commentator, and a backstage and media correspondent.

Katrina, who holds degrees in both legal studies and developmental psychology, changed careers and began ghostwriting blog posts, articles, stories, and other projects. She also writes articles about different topics in wrestling and horror for various websites.

In 2017, Katrina started the brand Bookish Brown Girls @bookishbrowngirls, which promotes the work of authors who are WOC. She also writes romance and young adult fiction under the name Kay Blake (@authorkayblake).

In 2020, Katrina created her YouTube channel “In Kat We Trust.” Her channel is dedicated to nerdy content, including anime, movies, and wrestling. She created a panel called Behind the Magic: WOC in Wrestling to highlight WOC in the wrestling industry. This panel has been featured at New York Comic Con, MCM Birmingham Comic Con, LA Comic Con, C2E2, and Florida’s SuperCon.

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