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Matt Sydal Says Officials Weren’t Sure Shooting Star Press/RKO Spot Was Possible, Recalls Orton’s Reaction

October 29, 2020 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas
Matt Sydal Evan Bourne Randy Orton RKO

One of Matt Sydal’s most iconic moments in wrestling is his getting hit by an RKO mid-shooting star press, and he recalled that moment while speaking with Chris Van Vliet. The famous spot happened on the July 12th, 2010 episode of Raw and became an moment referenced regularly on WWE. Talking with Van Vliet, Sydal talked about how it wasn’t the first time he’d done it and that while WWE management didn’t think it could be done, Orton “didn’t even hesitate.” You can see highlights and the clip from the interview below:

On that spot not being the first time he’d done it: “I didn’t even realize that I had done that, maybe once or twice before. I think Alex Shelly gave it to me one year at a PWG Battle of Los Angeles, 2006 or 2007. He and I did Shooting Star and he gave me, basically a cutter. But it was just — with Randy and in WWE, it was just such a special moment. Because that RKO had been established, and he was the master of it. And people had seen it from all these different angles, but nobody expected this one to happen.”

On management being uncertain about the spot: “There were some doubts from management that it was humanly possible, or physically possible. But it really was, it was just this perfect merging of two guys’ special moves, two guys’ finishers. The things that we, I don’t want to say we do it without thinking, but it’s just something we can do confidently.”

On the difficulty of the spot: “I jumped, and there’s no control, so basically I’m jumping and if he’s there, I’m going to land on him. And if he jumps up to give me the cutter, I’m taking the cutter. To me, I basically have to do the same leap and dive. And then just as I come through, kind of as my head clears when I’d be able to see the ground, my opponent, it’s just instantly getting caught and hitting the ground. So I don’t really have a visual image of it.”

On how painful the spot was: “This one was, I would say, the highest level of pain degree. Because I had the extra downward gravity of it. But I did land basically how would the best way to land: you just belly out and eat it. And that’s why I laid there after. Sometimes I have energy and I’m selling very energetically. On that one, I just ate it and there’s no wind left in me, there was nothing. So I just lay there like a fish. [laughs]”

On Orton’s initial reaction to the idea: “Yeah, I mean basically, he didn’t even hesitate. He was, ‘Oh yeah, that’d be cool.’ And I just said it’s possible, and it’s really like — it’s a challenge for him to jump up at the right time. And it requires a very high level of athleticism and timing. But like, Randy’s not, that’s not going to be an issue for him. He is athleticism and timing. So it just all fell into place that one weekend, right there in wherever it was, Ohio or something.”

If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Chris Van Vliet with a h/t to 411mania.com for the transcription.

article topics :

Matt Sydal, Randy Orton, WWE, Jeremy Thomas