Randy Orton was recently linked to a move to AEW by three massively unreliable sources.
The rumour was started by Wrestlevotes- an unreliable Twitter account, who tweet out multiple rumours hoping to get something right- initially tweeted that AEW were negotiating with a major WWE talent. This was followed up by Sean Ross Sapp, a discredited MMA journalist, now to trying to forge a career as a wrestling journalist, who has yet to break a single wrestling story- revealed that Wrestlevotes were talking about Randy Orton. Finally, Ringside News, an awful clickbait site ran by a guy called Steve Carrier- who has zero sources in the wrestling industry whatsoever, let alone the WWE, cited both sources and added their own slice of bulls**t to the story but stating their non-existent sources could verify the story and that Orton’s deal was expiring shortly.
Unbelievably, despite usually being a part of the bulls**t brigade, only Dave Meltzer has come remotely close to delivering the facts relating to Orton’s status. Meltzer opted to simply cite his 2010 story where he revealed that Orton had signed a 10 year deal with company in January 2010. The Dirty Sheets can confirm that Orton actually signed a 5 year deal with the option to automatically extend if both sides were happy. Both sides opted to continue to see out the deal in 2015, thus, making it a 10 year deal, therefore, making Meltzer pretty much correct in this instance.
Our sources firmly believe that Orton will never leave the WWE, based on the fact that Orton’s current deal is worth a whopping $4.5m a year with 3.5% of merchandise sales, a tour bus, first class travel and an obligation to only work 150 dates per year. It has been indicated that it’s possible that if anyone is responsible for fueling rumours of Randy Orton’s WWE exit- it’s likely to be Randy Orton himself- who is said to be very keen for the WWE to begin talks to extend his contract, which expires in 10 months.
It’s extremely likely that Orton will be offered a new 5 year deal shortly, as he is set to be a key part of WWE’s future plans- with sources stating that he’s set to be a key player when the WWE move to Fox. Talks are likely being delayed, due to the fact that the WWE have a backlog of contracts to negotiate, with several deals expiring in April and with AJ Styles and Dolph Ziggler both currently working without WWE contracts. Styles’ previous contract is currently rolling over month by month, while Ziggler is working shots on a pay-per-show handshake arrangement.