Randy Orton Photo Casts Doubt On Impending WWE Return

Randy Orton has been sidelined with a back injury since May. The former WWE Champion has reportedly been dealing with the injury for some time, and surgery was possible but not confirmed. With the uncertainty surrounding the injury, a timetable for Orton's return has not been provided, and now there's even more doubt about how soon The Viper will get back in the ring.

Orton's wife Kim shared a selfie of the two on Instagram in celebration of their anniversary. The photo featured Orton looking dazed in a hospital bed with a mask on while Kim smiled with a thumbs up. Kim noted in the caption, "If y'all only knew why this pic was taken," and included the hashtag "in sickness and in health." No context was provided for the photo or the caption, however PWInsider reports that Orton was spotted in Birmingham, Alabama, on Monday, November 14. Many WWE stars go to Birmingham for surgical operations and rehabilitation, but there has not been any confirmation that Orton has had a procedure for his back injury.

Before his hiatus, Orton was featured in the tag team division alongside Matt Riddle. The two captured their first "Raw" Tag Team Championship together at SummerSlam 2021 when they defeated AJ Styles and Omos. Collectively known as RK-Bro, Orton and Riddle lost the titles to Alpha Academy briefly. RK-Bro won the titles again two months later and held the gold through WrestleMania 38 before losing to "SmackDown" Tag Team Champions The Usos in a unification match on the May 20 episode of "SmackDown." That bout marked Orton's last WWE appearance until further notice.