Randy Orton, who was backstage at the 1000th episode of Raw from his hometown of St. Louis, is officially advertised to return to WWE on next week’s episode of Raw. As noted here in Ask WNW, Orton is on booking sheets for upcoming WWE live events to work in the top of the card although I can’t confirm whether he’ll work as a babyface or heel.
There was a lot of discussion as to what WWE was going to do about Orton following his 60-day suspension for his second documented violation of the WWE Wellness Policy with Triple H and Vince McMahon even trying to scare him to think they were seriously considering firing him.
Most of my sources feel cutting Orton was something that was given a lot of consideration but ultimately the decision was to keep him due to the need for full-time top talent (not to mention the threat of delivering a top talent to TNA in the midst of a legal battle). As for the backstage heat, the suspension in itself wasn’t what caused the heat but rather how he handled it by feeling he was “above” the company.