What is The RKO?

The RKO is a Variation on the Diamond Cutter, a move made famous by Diamond Dallas Page and the Stone Cold Stunner, a move made famous by Stone Cold Steve Austin. The move was first introduced in the 1980’s by Johnny Ace who called it the “Ace Crusher”.

What does “R.K.O.” stand for?

“Three or four years ago, when I first came up with it, Vince told me he wanted a name for it by the end of the day. RKO are my initials. What can I say– I was pressed for time!” – Randy told WWE Magazine, December 2006. Randy’s entire name is Randal Keith Orton, meaning the K stands for Keith.

Famously used to..

Propel Orton into the record books as the youngest World Champion in WWE history by defeating Chris Benoit at SummerSlam in 2004.

He learned it how?

“I had a good vertical leap, so I figured I’d incorporate that into my move. The first night I planned on using it, I broke my foot. So during my time off from the ring, I watched Diamond Dallas Page and Johnny Ace tapes to learn how to fine tune it. When I first used it during a match, I had never practiced it before.” – Randy told WWE Magazine, December 2006.

Why this move above all others?

“I wanted to pick something I could do to everybody, no matter how big they were. I can do the RKO to Big Show or Rey Mysterio–Size doesn’t matter.” – Randy told WWE Magazine, December 2006.

Also Known As The Elevated cutter:

With an opponent placed on an elevated surface, a wrestler applies a three-quarter facelock and then draws the opponent away from the ropes/turnbuckle leaving the opponent’s feet over the ropes, making them the only thing, other than the wrestler keeping the opponent off the ground. The wrestler next falls backwards so that the opponent is forced to dive forward onto the top of his/her head due to the angle of which they are dropped.

A slight variation on this sees the wrestler run forward while still applying the three-quarters face lock, pulling the opponent off the ropes before dropping backwards down to the mat to force the opponent down for a cutter from a raised height.

Source:, WWE Magazine and Wikipedia.

Scroll to Top
%d bloggers like this: