The former IIconics, Cassie Lee and Jessie McKay have discussed the transition from NXT to the WWE main roster, saying they were presented in a less threatening way with more emphasis on their comedy chops.
Formerly known as Peyton Royce [Cassie Lee] and Billie Kay [Jessie McKay], The IIconics were released from their WWE contracts on the 15th of April 2021 along with a slew of other talents including Mickie James and Kalisto as part of budget cuts in the company.
Since leaving the company the Australian stars have been busy as they have launched their own Off Her Chops podcast. Speaking to Renee Paquette on her Oral Sessions podcast, the two women discussed their transition from NXT to the main roster in WWE that occurred in 2018.
Jessie began by explaining the differences between NXT and the main roster:
“It’s night and day. It’s just so different. It’s a different audience, a different creative team, and everything is different. Nothing overlaps. NXT was so fun we got to explore who we wanted to be and our debut, we couldn’t have dreamed of anything better. The SmackDown after WrestleMania, we come out, lay out Charlotte it was so cool and we loved that. Fortunately, we were given a microphone every time we came to the ring, which not many people get the chance to do. So it was really cool to show our personalities right off the bat, who we are. It is different, the product, the brand, and the audience. It’s just different.”
Cassie continued saying that in NXT the duo were booked as more of a serious threat, however this changed when on the main roster when WWE Chairman Vince McMahon heard how funny they could be on the microphone:
“So in NXT we were still b*tches but I feel like we were stronger maybe. We were booked more like threats in NXT, when we transitioned to the main roster, Vince thought we were so funny on the microphone in that first week. So it became more about us being funny and less threats. For me, that was a little bit for me to realise we weren’t threats. We’re these fun over-the-top personalities, which I loved. But I miss being perceived as someone who could win a match or win a championship. But last year when we came back after the pandemic, I absolutely loved from when we came back to splitting us up. Because I feel like it was really a mesh of both of those things. We were still ourselves on the microphone, but when we got in the ring it was time for business.”
Despite the belief that they weren’t booked as legitimate threats for most of their run, The IIconics did manage to snag the WWE Women’s Tag Team Titles at WrestleMania 35.
During the chat with Paquette, Cassie and Jessie also revealed that they are unable to work or make money in the US due to visa issues at the moment, although this could change should they sign with another company when their ninety-day non-compete clause expires.