Randy Orton has been with WWE for over two decades now. Over all these years, fans have called him by many names. “The Viper”, “The Apex Predator”, “The Silent Assassin”, and “The Punter” are a few of the monikers he went by in the Stamford-based promotion.

But the very first moniker he had in WWE was “The Legend Killer” which he used during WWE’s Ruthless Aggression Era. In this article, we will discuss in detail how Orton earned the moniker “The Legend Killer.”

The time when Randy Orton became “The Legend Killer”


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Orton joined WWE in 2000. Within a few years in the company, he developed an arrogant heel persona, feeding off hatred from the WWE Universe. To make people dislike him even more, he started targeting and disrespecting WWE Hall of Famers, legends, and veterans and attacking them, thus earning him the “Legend Killer” moniker in WWE.


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He portrayed himself as an obnoxiously arrogant and self-centered wrestler, which was befitting to the period as WWE’s Ruthless Aggression Era had also begun. Fans knew him for his brutal style in the ring and often attacked his opponents before or after matches.

He turned more arrogant after he won the World Heavyweight Champion and became the youngest World Champion just at the age of 24. It fueled his ego even more and his attitude shifted to being more pompous and inhumane. Many legends fell victim to his brutality during his “Legend Killer” gimmick.

Legend vs. Legend Killer feuds

One of the very first victims of “The Legend Killer” was the Fabulous Moolah. During the September 15, 2003, episode of Raw, when Orton met with Moolah and introduced himself as “The Legend Killer”, he RKO-ed her to announce his gimmick.


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He also had Legend vs. Legend Killer matches with WWE legends such as Shawn Michaels and Mick Foley. Despite being less experienced than his opponents, he managed to pick up grand victories, boosting his ego ten-fold. In addition, he had a Legend vs. Legend Killer match with Hulk Hogan but unfortunately he couldn’t best ‘The Hulkster.’

During this time, he also had a feud with The Undertaker, which lasted about nine months. After months of going back and forth, the rivalry ended with The Dead Man getting the last laugh after beating Orton in a Hell in a Cell match at Armageddon.


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Watch this story – WWE Stars Who Served In The US Military Featuring Randy Orton

In mid-2007, Orton transitioned to his most popular gimmick and started calling himself “The Viper”. What are your thoughts on Orton’s “The Legend Killer” gimmick? Which one of Orton’s gimmicks is your favorite? Let us know in the comments below.

Written by

Monika Thapa


One take at a time

A 9-year-old girl from a small town dreamed of being a WWE wrestler one day. Yeah, that girl is me. But the irony of the situation was that I was skinny.
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Edited by

Anuj Jacob