Randy Orton has taken a backseat over the last several months, sticking primarily to upper mid-card feuds and staying out of the World heavyweight championship picture.
However, that all changed this week, and it’s about damn time.
Although Orton hasn’t exactly been booked like a jobber, he hasn’t exactly been booked strongly, either. That being said, the WWE finally bumped him back to the main event after one of his best weeks in recent memory.
Orton's week started off with a strong showing in tag team action on the last episode of Friday Night SmackDown, when he and Big Show teamed up to defeat Cody Rhodes and Kane.
It was the second best match on SmackDown (behind Sheamus vs. Daniel Bryan) and just the latest match in a long line of solid TV bouts involving Orton.
It didn’t take long for “The Viper” to outdo himself, though.
On this week’s episode of Monday Night Raw, Orton teamed up with Sheamus to take on Chris Jericho and Alberto Del Rio in yet another tag team encounter.
As for the match? Simply awesome.
Tag team matches involving the WWE’s top stars are typically very good, but this one in particular was great, which should come as no surprise given all the competitors involved.
Orton and the three others in the match made the most of the 13 minutes they were given, and the result was a quick-paced, action-packed bout that was probably the best tag team TV match of 2012 so far.
Another great showing for Orton here, and one that was made even better by what he did after the match was over.
Orton and Sheamus lost the match after Sheamus inadvertently hit Orton with the Brogue Kick.
After the match, Orton returned the favor by nailing the Great White with a vicious RKO.
For the first time in quite a while, Orton didn’t seem to care who pissed him off. Whether it was a face or a heel, Orton was going to nail him with an RKO in the middle of the ring.
That’s the Orton I’ve missed—the Stone Cold-like tweener who plants anyone who gets in his way with an RKO.
That’s why, after two quality matches, one quality RKO and an earned shot at the world heavyweight championship, Orton can also call himself the WWE Superstar of the Week.