WWE Mass Releases- Australian Stars The IIconics Among The Wave Of Cuts
One of WWE's worst yearly traditions made its presence known overnight, as Australian wrestling fans woke up to the news that two of its most prominent wrestling stars were given their release from their contracts. Peyton Royce and Billie Kay, The IIconics, were among a list of talent wished well in their future endeavours in the last several hours.
Peyton Royce and Billie Kay, known as KC Cassidy and Jessie McKay on the Aussie independent scene, notably battled each other in Pro Wrestling Australia (PWA) over the PWWA Championship. They were signed to the NXT brand in April 2015. After working as enhancement talent on the black and yellow brand for several months, the real-life best friends would align on screen as the Iconic Duo, unsuccessfully challenging for the NXT Women's Champion at NXT TakeOver: San Antonio. A main roster move saw a name alteration to the IIconics, and more success. At WWE Super Showdown 2018 at the MCG in Melbourne, Australia, Royce and Kay defeated Asuka and Naomi. They would follow up this milestone moment by becoming the second-ever WWE Women's Tag Team Champions at Wrestlemania 35.
Following their title win, the IIconics were not heavily featured on screen despite being champions. They dropped the titles to Alexa Bliss and Nikki Cross on Raw, and continued to slide down the card before Royce and Kay were forced to disband as a tag team in 2020. While it was initially thought that Peyton Royce would receive a big push as a singles star, she was shifted into a tag team with Lacey Evans, while Billie Kay moved to Smackdown, taking part in comedic skits where she would make pitches to other WWE talent with her resume.
In other shocking developments, Samoa Joe was another prominent name cut from the WWE roster. After suffering several injury setbacks in the ring, Joe was transitioned to a colour commentary role on Monday Night Raw. His final appearance on WWE programming was at WrestleMania 37. It was thought that his removal from the commentary team was leading to an in-ring return, but sadly it was not to be.
Also, the legendary Mickie James was released, as well as Kalisto, Chelsea Green, Bo Dallas, Tucker, Wesley Blake & Mojo Rawley.