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WWE Rumors on Edge, Royal Rumble and Randy Orton's Injury; FTR Takes Leave of Absence

Mike Chiari@@mikechiariFeatured Columnist IVJanuary 13, 2023

Edge celebrates after winning his match during the World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) Crown Jewel pay-per-view in the Saudi capital Riyadh on October 21, 2021. (Photo by Fayez Nureldine / AFP) (Photo by FAYEZ NURELDINE/AFP via Getty Images)
FAYEZ NURELDINE/AFP via Getty Images

Bleacher Report catches you up on the latest news from the WWE Universe and All Elite Wrestling.

Edge Reportedly Planned for Royal Rumble Return

Edge has not been seen on WWE programming since Extreme Rules in October, but his hiatus is reportedly set to come to an end soon.

According to PWInsider.com (h/t Felix Upton of Ringside News), Edge is "penciled in" to return at the Royal Rumble premium live event in San Antonio on Jan. 28.

Edge's last WWE appearance saw him lose an I Quit match to Finn Balor of The Judgment Day at Extreme Rules. The Rated-R Superstar gave up in an effort to save his wife, fellow WWE Hall of Famer Beth Phoenix, from getting hit with a conchairto by Rhea Ripley.

Ripley took out Phoenix anyway, and The Judgment Day proceeded to put Edge on the shelf as well with a post-match attack.

Edge has had a part-time schedule since returning to WWE after a nearly decade-long retirement in 2020, so he has had several instances of being written off television before returning months later.

Since returning, the Royal Rumble has been a hugely important event for Edge, and it has made for some memorable moments.

He was a surprise entrant in the 2020 men's Royal Rumble match, which ended his retirement from a severe neck injury. One year later, Edge made his return from a different injury as the No. 1 entrant in the 2021 men's Rumble, and he went the distance in winning his second career Rumble.

Then, at the 2022 Royal Rumble, Edge teamed with Beth for the first time in a winning effort against The Miz and Maryse.

If Edge returns at the 2023 Royal Rumble, he could add some much-needed star power to the men's Royal Rumble match.

Orton Reportedly Unlikely to Resume Team with Riddle Upon Returning

RK-Bro was once one of the most popular acts in WWE, but the team is reportedly unlikely to be reformed when Randy Orton returns from injury.

According to Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter (h/t Nikunj Walia of Ringside News), RK-Bro may be finished due to the emergence of a new team with similar name elements.

Meltzer noted that with WWE referring to Drew McIntyre and Sheamus as The Banger Bros, it could be a sign that there are no future plans for RK-Bro, as WWE typically doesn't like to have teams with the same name elements.

RK-Bro have not competed as a team since the May 20 episode of SmackDown, which saw them drop the Raw Tag Team Championships to The Usos in a title unification match.

That was also Orton's most recent match, as he has been out ever since with a back injury.

Fightful Select (h/t H Jenkins of Ringside News) reported in November that Orton underwent fusion surgery in his lower back. The expectation was that Orton would miss a significant amount of time, and Fightful added that some in WWE said "they'd be fortunate to have him back" at any point given his age and the severity of the injury.

Matt Riddle went on a singles run once Orton landed on the shelf, but he has also been out since early December. WWE announced that Riddle suffered an injury at the hands of Solo Sikoa and would be out for six weeks.

It was widely assumed that Orton and Riddle would break up at some point despite their popularity as a team, but given the uncertainty of Orton's status, their split may not require an angle.

FTR Taking Time Off to Decide Future

FTR's Dax Harwood revealed Thursday that he and tag team partner Cash Wheeler are set to take some time away from AEW to make some decisions about their future in pro wrestling.

Speaking on his FTR with Dax podcast (h/t WrestlingInc's Eric Mutter), Harwood said he and Wheeler were granted "the next few months" off television so they can focus on getting healthy and planning their future:

"We have asked and been granted the next few months off of television, so we can sit back, reflect, let our bodies heal, and figure out what we are going to do for the next few years. Because whatever we decide to do next, will be the absolute last thing we do, as far as wrestling. I don't see myself, after I'm done with whatever we're going to decide next, in five years going on the independents. I don't see myself working, in five years a Japan tour, or a Mexican tour, or traveling around the world and wrestling all over places.

"That's why these next few months are the most important few months for us. By April at least, at most, we will have an answer. But now, again, I have to take in my health, I have to take in my family, I have to take in my creativity, and I have to take in my personal life all into consideration, about what we're going to do next."

The first big break in wrestling for FTR came in WWE when they went by the names Scott Dawson and Dash Wilder individually, and The Revival collectively.

Harwood signed with WWE in 2012, and Wheeler followed in 2014, and by 2015 they became NXT tag team champions for the first time. All told, The Revival were two-time NXT tag team champs, two-time Raw tag team champs and two-time SmackDown tag team champs, making them the first Triple Crown tag team champions in WWE history.

They were released from WWE in 2020 and signed with AEW shortly thereafter. FTR won the AEW World Tag Team Championships once, but they also became AAA, IWGP and Ring of Honor tag champs after leaving WWE.

FTR recently dropped all of those titles, however, apparently in anticipation of taking some time off.

In November, Harwood told Fightful Select (h/t WrestlingInc's Colby Applegate) that FTR's AEW contract expires at the end of April 2023, which coincides with the time they are taking off.

Harwood and Wheeler are widely regarded as one of the top tag teams in the world, so it stands to reason that both AEW and WWE will be vying hard for their services.

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