• Vince McMahon Did Not Want To Sign Randy Orton To A WWF Contract Back In 2001
The World Wrestling Federation signed Randy Orton, the son of WWF Legend ‘Cowboy’ Bob Orton Jr., to a developmental contract in 2001 and sent him to Ohio Valley Wrestling, before he made his main roster (WWF SmackDown!) debut in 2002.
On a recent episode of his weekly ‘Grilling JR’ podcast, Old School WWF play-by-play commentator Jim Ross talked about having to convince Vince McMahon to sign Randy in the first place, after “The Legend Killer” had left the Marines on bad terms before becoming a pro-wrestler.
Here’s what J.R. had to say:
“Every recruiting story is different. I had a hard sell to get Randy Orton hired because of his negative exit from the Marines, and Vince, being a strong patriot, didn’t like how that worked out with Randy in the military.
I said, ‘Didn’t you get a second chance, [Vince]? Well, what’s the difference with this kid? He’s third generation. If he hits, look what we have. If he doesn’t hit, I can get rid of him in 90 days notice. What do we have to lose?’
He’s going to end his career as one of the greatest talents. Hall of Famer, no doubt, but also going to be regarded by his peers as one of the greatest in-ring workers. It worked out well.”
• ON THIS DAY IN WWE HISTORY (September 16, 2005) – WWE Friday Night SmackDown!
On this day in 2005, World Wrestling Entertainment aired an episode of their weekly TV show ‘WWE Friday Night SmackDown!’.
It was broadcasted from the Alltel Arena in Little Rock, Arkansas and featured pre-taped matches, interviews & storyline segments on the road to the ‘WWE No Mercy 2005’ PPV.
Here’s the match-card:
– Booker T & Chris Benoit vs. Orlando Jordan & Christian
– Heidenreich & Road Warrior Animal vs. MNM
– Mr. Kennedy vs. Jacque Pilskin
– Rey Mysterio vs. JBL
– Batista vs. Nunzio
– The Undertaker vs. Randy Orton