For the past several months, The IIconics — Billie Kay and Peyton Royce — have been absent from WWE television, leading to speculation that one, or both, members of the team might be injured. A new social media post, however, suggests that the company is deliberately keeping them on the sidelines, possibly preparing a gimmick change for the former Women’s Tag Team Champions.
In response to an inquiry from a Twitter follower (via WrestlingNews.co), Meltzer tweeted on Friday night that he had asked about The IIconics’ status “a few weeks ago” and had been told that WWE made the decision to take them off television. While it isn’t clear yet what the company has planned for the duo, Meltzer stressed that they should return eventually and that they might also be repackaged with a new gimmick.
As recalled by WrestlingNews.co, The IIconics had mixed success in 2019, a year that saw them win the Women’s Tag Team Championships from Sasha Banks and Bayley at WrestleMania 35. Their run with the titles, however, turned out to be less than memorable, as plans for the duo to enter a rivalry with The Bella Twins in the following months were scrapped after Nikki Bella was forced to retire due to complications from previous neck surgery. Originally, the purported plan was for the Bellas to appear on the SmackDown episode after WrestleMania 35 in order to set up a feud with Kay and Royce.
— WWE (@WWE) June 3, 2019
Despite their reign as Women’s Tag Team Champions being perceived as forgettable by many fans, The IIconics were the longest-reigning titleholders for some time. The Kabuki Warriors recently broke Kay and Royce’s record by hanging on to the belts for 121 straight days as of February 4, as noted by Cageside Seats. Royce and Kay — who were picked by Monday Night Raw in the October 2019 brand draft — were last utilized by WWE in November, and have also been kept away from live events and pay-per-views, including last month’s Royal Rumble.
At this point, it’s still far from certain how WWE will repackage The IIconics — assuming the rumors turn out to be accurate. However, Daily DDT opined in November that the team hasn’t been “given the respect” they deserve on the main roster following a productive stint on NXT, where they were among the black-and-gold brand’s top female heels. Aside from noting that Royce and Kay have great chemistry — dating back to their years in the Australian wrestling scene — the outlet wrote that they excel in drawing heat from audiences as onscreen villains while also making their opponents look good in the process.