Posted in: Mr. Tito
TITO DAILY - Can't Randy Orton Just Enjoy Some Time Off?
By Mr. Tito
Dec 30, 2011 - 9:30:59 PM

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2011 is almost over... As a fine way to end 2011, check out my almighty 2012 Pro Wrestling Predictions which has very bold predictions for 2012 and also reviews my 2011 predictions (50%, not bad!). Yes, that was a cheap plug.

One bold prediction that I can easily make is that the WWE will LOVE Randy Orton for 2012, no matter what. I'm not sure whether it's the Generational link with Randy being "Cowboy" Bob Orton's son or if his past friendship with Triple H keeps him strong. In my eyes, nothing has proven to me that Randy Orton and Orton alone puts butts in seats. Just go look at Smackdown's houseshow circuit disaster since the 2011 Draft that moved Orton to Smackdown.

DON'T GET ME WRONG. I like Randy Orton and back in May, I actually ranked him as the best WWE wrestler. Times have changed, and ditto for Alberto Del Rio at #2, as their moves to new rosters have NOT worked out well, in my opinion. I find Randy Orton to be a very strong in-ring worker, which is something I didn't hardly think 5 years earlier.

But he's just not a big draw. WWE has repeatedly tried to push him HARD as a face and nobody is coming out of the woodwork JUST to see Randy Orton. They never have. WWE tried extensively to make him the "next big face" wrestler in 2004, even giving him the WWE Title at such a young age (24) and pushing a horribly named merchandise line called "Randy Wear". For the past 3 years, Orton has been a face and he hasn't proven his drawing ability. Great in-ring wrestler, but many great in-ring wrestlers have come along who weren't draws.

His match with Wade Barrett lost 700,000+ viewers a few weeks ago and yet CM Punk and Zack Ryder are the ones taking heat for weak ratings. Better yet, Michael Cole doesn't "bury" Orton on commentary so that excuse can't be there. Smackdown's houseshow circuit has been an utter failure with Orton on top and the Smackdown brand needs appearances on RAW just to help boost attention to the brand. Sure, Smackdown is on Fridays and on the SyFy Channel... But ECW used to be an Infomercial starting at 1am on Saturday Nights. What's your excuse?

I've also noticed that Orton has been very controlling in the ring. Just go watch any of his matches lately and he just HAS to hit all of his spots within the timeframe given for the match. I notice Wade Barrett just mailing it in because Orton is completely calling the match. Granted, veteran leadership in the ring is always wanted, but his matches are becoming dull and it's hurting the younger wrestlers.

WWE is CRAZY if they are thinking he should make a surprise appearance at Royal Rumble, win the Rumble, and then take time off before actually wrestling Wrestlemania 28 (reports Wrestling Observer/Figure 4 Weekly). Can't the WWE just let go and let Orton have some time off to refresh the batteries? Can't the WWE give the fans a breather for how much he's shoved down our throats as an unstoppable face, much like John Cena? Besides, what exactly did Randy Orton as World Champion bring the last time it happened on the RAW brand (late 2010) and the Smackdown roster (2011)? Oh yeah, lower ratings.

Orton is a fine wrestler but he's not the draw that the WWE thinks he is. Only way Orton will strengthen his drawing ability is if he makes CHANGES to his character and wrestling style, and fast. Maybe turn him HEEL and let him play "King of the Mountain" on the Smackdown brand? For as hard as the WWE constantly pushes him, the WWE isn't seeing the returns on their investment as they should.

Knowing my luck, the WWE will read this column and rush Alberto Del Rio back to win the Royal Rumble just so he can have a title shot at Wrestlemania 28...

So just chill... Till the next episode!

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