Randy Orton injured at the hands of The Shield on SmackDown

Randy Orton gets attacked by The Shield: SmackDown, Dec. 14, 2012

The Shield make Randy Orton the next target in their brutal series of attacks.

It appears WWE’s Apex Predator has become The Shield’s prey.

On the Dec. 14 edition of SmackDown, the rogue trio of Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns delivered a vicious surprise assault on Randy Orton, leaving the nine-time World Champion lying on a broken table in the backstage area.

After an examination by WWE medical staff, Matt Striker reported Orton has separated his shoulder, it was literally hanging out of the socket and needed to be popped back in. There was also concern that Orton may have suffered a concussion, which would require further evaluation.

An additional update was provided during the SmackDown main event between Sheamus and Antonio Cesaro. Josh Mathews explained Orton had been taken to a local medical facility, he did not have a concussion and he may, in fact, be able to compete.

The sneak attack by The Shield came on the heels of another assault on the Dec. 3 episode of Raw. After emerging from the Greensboro Coliseum audience, they ambushed Orton in brutal fashion immediately after his victory over referee-turned-Superstar Brad Maddox. ( WATCH | PHOTOS)

Four days later on SmackDown, The Shield followed up with a mysterious interview from an undisclosed location, during which Rollins declared, “Randy Orton took advantage of a young, defenseless Brad Maddox. Welcome to payback, Randy.” Reigns ominously added, “We shield WWE from injustice.”

Randy Orton has proven time-and-time-again that he is one of the toughest, grittiest competitors in WWE, and he will surely be looking for vengeance on the three black-clad Superstars who put him down. The only questions now are when and where The Viper will choose to strike.

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