Randy Orton is back, and made a statement tonight at Extreme Rules.
Orton returned right after Shinsuke Nakamura captured the United States title from Jeff Hardy on tonight’s program. Right before the match was to begin, Nakamura low blowed Hardy. After he said he would continue the match, Nakamura struck Hardy with the kinshasa and pinned him in a short match. As Nakamura as celebrating, Orton made his return to the company, music playing as he headed to the ring.
After he and Nakamura had a staredown, Orton took a recovering Jeff Hardy back to the ground and stomped him right in the groin, seemingly turning heel in the process. He then made his way to the back, leaving Nakamura in a state of confusion. Later in the program, commentators noted that Hardy wanted his rematch against Nakamura on SmackDown. It was said that Paige had yet to sanction the match.
Orton was last seen on television back in May at Backlash, where Hardy defeated Orton to retain the United States championship. He had been out the last couple of months following surgery that repaired a medial meniscus tear in his left kneee.