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A great finishing move is one of the most vital factors to a wrestler's appeal and character, even at times it can help make a wrestler come to life and flourish in their career. It is essential that a finishing move must be able to look and portray as devastating and harmful for fans to believe that it was indeed that deciding move in that match that made their opponent powerless and defeated.

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After all, it is the last thing fans see before the wrestler wins their personal match, so it is very essential that they leave a strong, final statement. The RKO is without a doubt one of the greatest finishers of all time.

The RKO is a signature finishing move in professional wrestling, particularly associated with and popularized by the wrestler, Randy Orton. This move involves the wrestler performing a jumper cutter or diamond cutter, which involves grabbing the opponent's head and falling to the ground, driving the opponent's face into the mat. The move is often executed as a surprise attack, with the wrestler springing into action when their opponent least expects it.

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rko wrestling moves

The RKO has become one of the most iconic and recognizable finishing moves in modern day wrestling. Randy Orton can often perform the RKO wrestling move from seemingly out of nowhere. The RKO move is extremely successful because it gives the wrestler control over their opponent, making them defenseless to attack.

The RKO move is a wrestling move that can be used to gain an advantage over your opponent. The wrestler kneels on one knee and places their other arm behind them. Then, they grip their opponent’s head and roll them over onto their back. This movement can be used as a submission technique or for simply taking down your opponent. The RKO wrestling move can be used as part of a combination, or it can be executed as a solo surprise attack.

In professional wrestling, an RKO is a move set that involves knocking your opponent down to the mat with hard strikes that are usually delivered while they are standing up or when they are already on their backside. This can be a very powerful way to win a match quickly.


Randy Orton is a professional wrestler who performed for WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment. He was born on April 1, 1980, in Knoxville, Tennessee, United States. Randy Orton is a third-generation wrestler, his grandfather, Bob Orton Sr., and father “Cowboy” Bob Orton Jr., were also professional wrestlers. Orton made his professional wrestling debut in 2000 and signed with the WWE in 2001.

Randy Orton has won numerous championships in his career, including the WWE Championship, World Heavyweight Championship, and international Championship. He is known for the RKO wrestling finisher, which has become one of the most popular and recognizable finishing moves in WWE history, as was previously stated. Orton is considered one of the greatest wrestlers of all time and has been inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame.

Randy Orton's "RKO" finishing move is often known as one of the most perfect moves in all of wrestling. “RKO” stands for Randy Keith Orton and he chose this particular finisher because he wanted to choose something that he could perform on anybody, regardless of their size, he told WWE Magazine.

Randy Orton’s impressive vertical leap has helped him complete and master this finisher. Surprisingly to some, when Orton first used this finisher, he had never practiced it before in live situations.  All he had was visuals of Diamond Dallas Page and Johnny Ace and fine-tuned it by watching and studying tapes.

Over the years many finishers have gathered the attention and respect of the fans; the stunner, piledriver wrestling move, leg drop, sweet chin music, spear, guillotine wrestling move and curb stomp. The list continues one and one of amazing finishers but only one stands out from the rest as the greatest finisher of all time, the RKO.

The RKO has become famous due to its random appearances.  The RKO became so popular because of how unforeseen and at times absurdly ridiculous this move arrived and came about during a match.

This has fit well with Randy Orton because for the bulk of his career he functioned as a heel, which meant sneak attacking and surprising other superstars. This resulted in many RKOs in the ring, parking lots, homes, and other unplanned settings where Orton would emerge from offscreen and RKO his opponent, typically in complete astonishment at his unexpected entrance and most importantly the fans were clueless this would happen, so the response was incredible.

One thing to note is that other finishers lack the ability to execute their move in different formats. This is where the RKO outshines; it can be done as a straight-up finisher where Orton heckles his opponent to their feet before finishing them but also in a selection of other ways. He can catch wrestlers in midair when they jump off the ropes or another height area to RKO in the air. You already know this if you have ever watched Randy Orton perform this RKO move.


Wrestling is an efficient way to increase upper-body strength and cardio endurance. The RKO wrestling move is a wrestling move also known as the “sleeper hold.” To execute it, you kneel on one knee and place your other arm behind them. Then you grip their head and roll them over onto their back.

It’s an extremely powerful move that can take out your opponent speedily and rather easily. However, you need to be fast on your feet to pull off this wrestling move.

In wrestling, the RKO is a move that allows a wrestler to knock an opponent out of the ring or off their feet with one punch. It’s effective because it catches your opponent off-guard and takes away their positioning and balance.

The RKO can also be used as part of a combo attack, which makes it even more dangerous for your opponents. Kneeling on one knee gives you more leverage when performing the RKO, so practice regularly if you want to perfect this move in wrestling. Make sure you are aware of the defense mechanics when defending against an RKO attempt- there are many ways your opponent can counterattack.

The most common application of this move is against an opponent who has been backed into a corner or cage wall. To execute the RKO, the wrestler grasps his opponent by their hair and pulls them towards him while falling to one knee on top of them, causing the other person to fall flat on their back with no chance for escape or defense.

Though not as flashy and loud as some other moves in professional wrestling, the RKO is an essential part of any match-up and can be very rewarding and crowd roaring when executed correctly.

One thing that tends to harm finishers from reaching greatness is that they take too long to set up, or they do not look particularly in pain, once hit. This is where the RKO comes into play; it only takes a couple of seconds to set up and execute, and the result is what the fans want to see; the wrestler being ripped face-first into the floor or mat.

It is easy to set up, quick to execute, and gives off a painful image to the fans, which is enhanced further with the use of weapons, a tough surface, or elevation. This has served Randy Orton well because over the years the RKO has been a fairly protected finisher.

The RKO wrestling move is a variation of a cutter, this move sees the wrestler jumping towards the opponent and grabbing the opponent's head in a three-quarter face lock while parallel to the ground, and then slamming the opponent's face to the mat in a cutter.

The move was a minor variation of Diamond Dallas Page's Diamond Cutter, the move was then innovated by James Harrison and entitled the TKO, a shortened version of the moves full name Total Knockout. When Harrison trained Randy Orton he retitled it the RKO to match Orton's initials and Harrison renamed his versions name to Real Knockout. The move known as an RKO is only used by Orton and Harrison does use it but rarely since Orton’s entrance.

The RKO wrestling move is the complete finisher because it encounters all the benchmarks needed to be a great finisher, resulting in numerous remembrances over the years that supports its own legacy. It may not be as beautiful in technique as the flying high wrestling move, but it dominates in all other categories. 

Against lower to intermediate fights, the RKO almost promises a pin. Even in higher-level competitions, the RKO has an extraordinary success rate, but even when it disappoints Randy Orton can enhance the RKO to warrant a win.

Watch professional wrestlers perform this maneuver in order to see how it’s done correctly. Make sure you’re well-prepared before attempting this trick – it takes practice. It is recommended to start with something more elementary or beginner level such as the wrestling arm bar technique or the butcher wrestling move if you are a novice to wrestling. 


The RKO has become one of the most noticeable moves in wrestling, leading it to fame as it became a meme in the pop culture world, as well. Many non-wrestling fans might not even know the background behind the move, as they yell the phrase before unskillfully trying to execute it on their innocent friends. 

Randy Orton had one of the most celebrated WWE careers known to date, becoming a 14-time world champion. However, his greatest legacy will unquestionably be the RKO finisher that has seen him be a superstar in the business for nearly twenty years.

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rko wrestling move recap

The RKO move has helped Orton win multiple championships, star in countless and main events. It may just be a move, but the RKO has become much more recognized than most wrestler’s entire careers. 

If you never heard of the RKO until now, you now know it’s a great finisher, popularized by one of the best, Randy Orton.


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