WWE news: Happy Birthday, Randy Orton - The legend who blessed us with the RKO

Orton is one of WWE's top superstars

There are very few superstars that have ripped through WWE quite like Randy Orton. 

Whether it was disrespecting and beating Hall of Famers during his early 'Legend Killer' run, or more recently dominating as The Viper, he's been a main-event player from the very start. 

So, on his 40th Birthday, it's only right we celebrate Orton in all his glory, by looking back at some of the highlights of his career. 

There's only one place to begin really - Evolution.

Shortly after debuting, a young Orton was hand-picked by Triple H and Ric Flair to become part of the most dominant faction of the Ruthless Aggression era. 

Alongside those two legends and Batista, his career kicked off.

He won his first title at Armageddon in 2003, picking up the Intercontinental Championship on an iconic night that all four members of Evolution finished with gold around their waists. 

During his Legend Killer run, Orton picked up wins against the likes of Shawn Michaels and Mick Foley, while also disrespecting many more including Rob Van Dam and Harley Race.

Then came perhaps his most impressive achievement. In 2004, Orton became the youngest world champion in WWE history - beating Chris Benoit at the age of 24. 

Orton became WWE's youngest World Champion in 2004

But his reign lasted only a month, as Triple H, Flair and Batista kicked him out of Evolution, eventually losing his title to The Game.

The next few years saw Orton face-off against more WWE legends and had a well-received feud with The Undertaker, which saw them compete at WrestleMania and SummerSlam in 2005.

We can fast-forward through Randy's 'Legend vs Legend Killer' match with Hulk Hogan and his Rated-RKO tag-team dominance with Edge, to another world title run. 

Because it was there in 2008 that The Viper was born.  

The Viper was born in 2008

His first run with the WWE Championship came after a long feud with John Cena, but the title was awarded to him by Vince McMahon after Cena was forced to vacate through injury. 

Orton did, by crook or by hook, defend the title against Shawn Michaels, Chris Jericho and Jeff Hardy, before beating both the returning Cena and Triple H at WrestleMania 29. 

By 2010, The Viper was a six-time WWE Champion and well established as one of the company's top guys, having even feuded with Vince McMahon and his family, main-eventing PPV after PPV.

Orton's next big run came in 2013 when he won Money in the Bank and cashed-in on Daniel Bryan at SummerSlam, turning heel in the process to win his seventh WWE Championship. 

Orton was a seven-time WWE Champion by 2013

If we fast-forward to 2016, we can touch on his infamous match with Brock Lesnar at SummerSlam, which saw the Beast win by TKO, delivering a serious of elbows to Orton's head. 

The pair may not have been competing for a title, but it will still go down as one of the most memorable and shocking SummerSlam matches of recent memory. 

In more recent years, The Viper has been chasing other titles and has had successful runs with the United States Championship and even the SmackDown Tag Team belts. 

His achievements across the board in WWE are pretty untouchable. 

Orton has done it all in WWE

Orton is a nine-time WWE Champion, a four-time World Heavyweight title holder and only the 10th Grand-Slam champion, thanks to his US and Intercontinental title runs. 

But he's not done yet, not by a long shot. 

On his 40th Birthday, Orton is now preparing to challenge Edge in a Last Man Standing match at WrestleMania 36.

Given how personal the feud is, it's one of the most anticipated on the card and we have no doubt it will live up to the hype. 

Orton and Edge will meet at WrestleMania

Oh, there's just one more thing left to say: Happy Birthday, Randy Orton! 

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