Former WWE Star Praises Randy Orton's Locker Room Leadership

WWE has been without one of its most consistent stars for almost a year. Randy Orton has been out of action since May 2022, taking time away from the company to resolve a back issue. While not expected to be too serious at first, Orton ended up requiring surgery, leading him to being put on the shelf indefinitely. That said, the Viper might be sizing up for an in-ring return sooner than later. It was recently reported that there have been "rumblings" about Orton backstage for the first time in months, although it's unclear if these whispers are regarding working Orton back into storylines or just an internal discussion on his recovery.

Whenever Orton does get medically cleared, the WWE locker room is set to get an immediate boost. The 14-time world champion has been a staple of the roster for over two decades, and while he did have some documented attitude issues early on, he evolved into a valued and respected leader amongst his peers.

That sentiment is echoed across the professional wrestling industry as well. Former WWE star Killian Dain, now wrestling as Big Damo once again, praised Orton's leadership, noting that he valued learning from him.

"Randy was an incredible locker room leader and [a] great [person] to be around," Damo told "He was wonderful to all of us. Watching him wrestle every night on the house shows and stuff like that was f--king incredible because he's outstanding at what he does. I think that I learned to appreciate him more the more I saw him as well because he always had great matches and everything else, but the way he took his time and orchestrated the crowd, he was literally a level above everybody."

Damo added some well wishes towards Orton's recovery, emphasizing that his presence is extremely valuable to WWE as a whole.

"I'm hearing that he's having back issues, I'm really hoping it's not true because he's maybe the most important person on that roster right now," Damo continued. "I'm hoping that he's able to push through it. What a worker he is. What a leader."

If and when Orton returns to action, he has no shortage of potential narrative directions. The Apex Predator has unfinished business with Undisputed WWE Tag Team Champions The Usos, an inactive tag team partner in Matt Riddle, and years of history with Cody Rhodes.