The IInspiration are an Australian professional wrestling tag team consisting of Jessie McKay and Cassie Lee. They are best known for their time in WWE as The Iconic Duo and later The IIconics, under the individual names of Billie Kay and Peyton Royce, respectively. They were the first women's tag team to hold both the WWE Women's Tag Team Championships and the Impact Knockouts World Tag Team Championships in history.
|Members||Billie Kay / Jessie McKay / Jessie|
Cassie / Cassie Lee / KC Cassidy / Peyton Royce
|Name(s)||Billie Kay and Peyton Royce|
The Iconic Duo
Jessie and Cassie
Jessie McKay and KC Cassidy
|Billed heights||Billie Kay: 5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)|
Peyton Royce: 5 ft 7 in (1.70 m)
|264 lb (120 kg)|
|Billed from||Sydney, Australia|
|Debut||8 May 2015|
McKay and Lee, who are real-life friends, both attended Westfields Sports High School and were trained by Madison Eagles. Prior to WWE, Kay and Royce wrestled in Pro Wrestling Women's Alliance (PWWA) in Australia under the names Jessie McKay and KC Cassidy.
They debuted as a team on 8 May 2015 shortly after being both signed on WWE's division NXT, and were used as jobbers on house shows, not picking up a single victory during their first year and a half as a team; during that time, they were renamed Jessie and Cassie, before they took on the names of Billie Kay and Peyton Royce, which they would keep for the rest of their time in WWE. The two debuted on NXT television on 5 October 2016, later dubbing themselves The Iconic Duo and later the IIconics which they unsuccessfully chased after the NXT Women's Championship. They made their move to the main roster by joining SmackDown on 10 April 2018, now as The IIconics, and captured the WWE Women's Tag Team Championship at WrestleMania 35 the following year, becoming the first all-Australian tag team champions in WWE history, and the first Australians to win a title at WrestleMania, WWE's flagship event. The two would break-up as the result of losing a feud with The Riott Squad in August 2020, and eventually be released simultaneously by the company in April 2021.
The two resumed teaming up following their releases, now going by the name 'The IInspiration'. They eventually signed with Impact Wrestling in October 2021, and would win the Impact Knockouts Tag Team Championship in their debut match at Bound for Glory (with the title being renamed Knockouts World Tag Team Championship during their reign); after losing the titles, the two would stepped away from in-ring action in April 2022, ending their tenure with Impact Wrestling. They are the first team in history to have held the WWE Women's Tag Team Championship and the Impact Knockouts Tag Team Championship.
Before forming as a team, Kay (under her real name Jessie McKay) and Royce (as KC Cassidy) wrestled each other at Pro Wrestling Women's Alliance (PWWA) throughout their careers including a title match for the PWWA Championship. Both women joined WWE, where they were assigned to NXT, in 2015, originally under their ring names from PWWA. Cassidy made her debut on the 15 May episode of NXT, losing to NXT Women's Champion Sasha Banks in a non-title match.
Early years (2015–2019)Edit
McKay and Cassidy were teamed up shortly after joining NXT, although they would only appear in house shows for over a year. Their first match as a team was on 8 May 2015 at a house show in Largo, Florida, where they lost to Bayley and Carmella in what was also McKay's first match in WWE. For a period of over a year, the two were used as jobbers and lost all of their matches as a team, although they won a few separately; during that period, they were renamed Cassie (Royce) and Jessie (Kay), before taking on their names of Peyton Royce and Billie Kay in August 2015.
The team made their TV debut on the 5 October 2016 episode of NXT, and were later dubbed "The Iconic Duo". Almost a year and a half after the creation of their team, the duo picked up their first win on 14 October 2016 at a house show in Fort Pierce, Florida, defeating Aliyah and Liv Morgan. They also won their first match on television on the 28 December 2016 episode of NXT, defeating Aliyah and Morgan again. On 28 January 2017 at NXT TakeOver: San Antonio, the two were voted 2016's "Breakout of the Year" at the NXT Year-End Awards; they also competed at the event in their live TV debut, both losing in a fatal four-way match for the NXT Women's Championship won by defending champion Asuka.
At NXT TakeOver: WarGames, Royce unsuccessfully competed in a fatal four-way match for the vacant NXT Women's Championship against Kairi Sane, Nikki Cross, and winner Ember Moon. The duo's final televised match on NXT TV was on the 4 October 2017 episode of NXT in a loss against Cross and Ruby Riott, although they kept on competing in house shows and Peyton made her main roster debut for SmackDown in the 20-woman WrestleMania Women's Battle Royal at WrestleMania 34; their final match as a part of the NXT brand was on 12 April 2018 at a house show in Fort Pierce, Florida, where they lost against Dakota Kai and Steffanie Newell; after the match, both teams embraced one another.
Kay and Royce, now known as "The IIconics", debuted on 10 April 2018 episode of SmackDown Live, attacking SmackDown Women's Champion Charlotte Flair, allowing Carmella to cash in her Money in the Bank contract and defeat Flair to win the championship. The following week on SmackDown, The IIconics won their first match on the main roster by defeating Asuka and Becky Lynch. On 6 October at Super Show-Down in their native country, they defeated Asuka and Naomi.
WWE Women's Tag Team Champions (2019)Edit
In 2019, The IIconics entered their first Royal Rumble match at the eponymous event, eliminating Nikki Cross before being eliminated by Lacey Evans. The following month at Elimination Chamber, they participated in the first female tag team Elimination Chamber match to determine the inaugural holders of the WWE Women's Tag Team Championship, eliminating Naomi and Carmella before being eliminated by Nia Jax and Tamina; the match was ultimately won by The Boss 'n' Hug Connection (Bayley and Sasha Banks).
In March, The IIconics started a feud with The Boss 'n' Hug Connection, whom they defeated in a non–title match on the 19 March episode of SmackDown. Because of their win, they (and two other teams) challenged Banks and Bayley for the championship at WrestleMania 35 in a fatal four-way tag team match. At the event on 7 April, The IIconics won the Women's Tag Team Championship after Kay pinned Bayley. Their win made them the first all-Australian tag team champions in WWE history (the only previous occurrence of an Australian tag team champion was Buddy Murphy, who became NXT Tag Team Champion alongside American Wesley Blake in 2015), and the first Australians to win a title at WrestleMania. Two days later on SmackDown, in their first title defence, The IIconics defeated Kris Statlander and Karissa Rivera. On 17 June episode of Raw, the IIconics successfully defended their titles against Alexa Bliss and Nikki Cross. On the 16 July episode of SmackDown, The IIconics retained their titles against The Kabuki Warriors (Asuka and Kairi Sane) via count-out. On the 5 August episode of Raw, the duo lost the titles to Bliss and Cross in a fatal four-way elimination match. They were the first team eliminated in the match, being knocked out by Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville. Their reign ended at 120 days.
On 16 October, it was announced that The IIconics had been drafted to Raw as supplemental picks of the 2019 WWE Draft. The team unsuccessfully challenged for the WWE Women's Tag Team Championships multiple times throughout the summer. They also feuded with Ruby Riott, mocking her backstage for not having any friends. They would go on to trade victories as Kay and Royce defeated Riott while Riott defeated Kay. At Payback, The IIconics were defeated by Riott and her newly reunited tag partner Liv Morgan. The following night on Raw, The IIconics were forced to disband after losing to The Riott Squad per a stipulation. As a result of the 2020 WWE Draft, Royce was drafted to Raw while Kay was drafted to SmackDown, solidifying the breakup. As a result of budget cuts made by WWE just days following WrestleMania 37 on 15 April 2021, Kay and Royce were released from their WWE contracts ending their six-years runs with the company. Both women were placed under a 90-day no compete clause which expired on 14 July 2021.
Impact Wrestling (2021–2022)Edit
Following their releases, the two confirmed their intention to resume teaming-up outside of WWE, calling themselves a package deal. They had also stated in numerous interviews that they were considering their options, and were undecided on if they would sign with Impact Wrestling or All Elite Wrestling. In June, the two filed a trademark for The IInspiration name, which indicated their new team name. On 27 August, the two announced The IInspiration Tour, marking their return to wrestling.
At Knockouts Knockdown on 9 October 2021, it was announced that The IInspiration would be making their debut for Impact Wrestling at Bound for Glory, where they defeated Decay (Havok and Rosemary) for the Impact Knockouts Tag Team Championship, becoming the first female team to have won women's tag titles in both Impact Wrestling and WWE in history. They retained the titles against Decay at Turning Point. At Sacrifice, The IInspiration lost the titles to The Influence (Madison Rayne and Tenille Dashwood), and failed to regain the titles at Rebellion. On 27 April 2022, The IInspiration announced that they will be indefinitely stepping away from in-ring action, ending their tenure with Impact Wrestling.
On 16 May 2021, Royce and Kay launched a comedy and variety podcast titled Off Her Chops.
Championship and accomplishmentsEdit
- Richard, Trionfo (5 October 2016). "WWE NXT Report: The Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classics, One Of Last Year's Winners Makes An Impact, Peyton Royce Returns, And More". Pro Wrestling Insider. Retrieved 13 October 2016.
- "The IIconics put the entire Women's division on notice: WWE.com Exclusive, April 10, 2018". WWE. Retrieved 12 April 2018.
- "The Iiconics Appear To Have New Tag Team Name For When They Return To Ring". TheSportster. 20 June 2021. Retrieved 26 June 2021.
- "Billie Kay". WWE. Retrieved 15 April 2018.
- "Peyton Royce". WWE. Retrieved 15 April 2018.
- Bobby, Melok (6 May 2015). "Australia's Jessica McKay ready to make waves in NXT". WWE.com. Retrieved 13 February 2016.
- "WrestleMania 35: Aussie pair The IIconics' emotional reaction to winning WWE Women's Tag Team Championship". Fox News. 3 January 2020. Retrieved 8 April 2019.
- "PWWA Championship history". PWA Australia. Archived from the original on 30 March 2014. Retrieved 25 May 2014.
- "Z1 Wrestle Rampage II News: JESSIE McKAY vs. KC CASSIDY". 12 October 2013.
- Namako, Jason (15 May 2015). "WWE NXT RESULTS – 5/13/15 (FINAL TAKEOVER HYPE)". WrestleView. Retrieved 12 June 2015.
- Harris, Jeffrey (9 May 2015). "WWE NXT House Show Results 5.08.15 – Largo, Florida". 411Mania. Retrieved 23 April 2019.
- Middleton, Marc (9 May 2015). "WWE NXT Live Event Results From Largo (5/8): Tye Dillinger Main Events, New Recruits In Action, More". Wrestling Inc. Retrieved 23 April 2019.
- Hanson, Levi (26 July 2015). "7/25 NXT RESULTS FROM WEST PALM BEACH, FL". PWInsider. Retrieved 23 April 2019.
- Middleton, Marc (26 July 2015). "WWE Live Event Results From Odessa (7/25): Seth Rollins Defends, NXT Tag Team, Paige, Lana, More". Wrestling Inc. Retrieved 23 April 2019.
- "The Iconic Duo hit the campaign trail in search of NXT Year-End Award votes". WWE. 12 January 2018. Retrieved 19 August 2019.
- Harris, Jeffrey (15 October 2015). "WWE Live Event Results From Odessa (7/25): Seth Rollins Defends, NXT Tag Team, Paige, Lana, More". 411Mania. Retrieved 23 April 2019.
- "Billie Kay & Peyton Royce def. Liv Morgan & Aliyah". WWE. 28 December 2018. Retrieved 23 April 2019.
- Witner, Arya (28 January 2017). "NXT TakeOver San Antonio live results: Nakamura vs. Roode". Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Retrieved 26 April 2018.
- Pappolla, Ryan. "NXT Women's Champion Asuka def. Billie Kay, Peyton Royce and Nikki Cross". WWE. Retrieved 28 January 2017.
- Clapp, John. "NXT Women's Championship Fatal 4-Way Match". WWE. Retrieved 1 October 2017.
- Scott, Taylor. "Ruby Riot & Nikki Cross def. Peyton Royce & Billie Kay". WWE. Retrieved 23 April 2019.
- Williams, JJ (22 April 2018). "NXT FT. PIERCE, FL, LIVE RESULTS: FAREWELLS FOR SANITY AND THE IICONICS". f4wonline. Retrieved 23 April 2019.
- Paolo David, Juan (12 April 2018). "Reason Why Peyton Royce And Billie Kay Are Now Called 'The IIconics' Revealed". The Inquisitr. Retrieved 12 April 2018.
- Ortman, Randall (12 April 2018). "Rumor Roundup (April 12, 2018): UFC and WWE TV deals, Broken Universe DVD, SmackDown title picture, more!". Cageside Seats. Retrieved 15 April 2018.
- Pritchard, Bill (12 April 2018). "Possible Reason For WWE Changing Peyton Royce And Billie Kay's Name To 'The IIconics' – Wrestlezone". Mandatory. Retrieved 15 April 2018.
- "NXT's Billie Kay and Peyton Royce make their debut by attacking and leaving her bruised SmackDown Women's Champion Charlotte Flair". WWE. Retrieved 12 April 2018.
- "Carmella cashes in to steal the SmackDown Women's Championship away from Charlotte Flair". Retrieved 12 April 2018.
- "Photos: Carmella cashes in after The IIconics ruthlessly ambush The Queen". WWE. Retrieved 12 April 2018.
- "WWE SmackDown LIVE results, April 24, 2018: The lows continue for Styles as Nakamura strikes yet again". WWE.
- "The IIconics def. Asuka & Naomi". WWE. Retrieved 6 October 2018.
- Powell, Jason (27 January 2019). "Powell's WWE Royal Rumble 2019 live review: Men's and Women's Royal Rumble matches, Brock Lesnar vs. Finn Balor for the WWE Universal Championship, Daniel Bryan vs. AJ Styles for the WWE Championship, Ronda Rousey vs. Sasha Banks for the Raw Women's Championship". Pro Wrestling Dot Net. Retrieved 27 January 2019.
- Trionfo, Richard (17 February 2019). "WWE ELIMINATION CHAMBER PPV REPORT: TWO CHAMBER MATCHES, SIX TITLE MATCHES, DID BECKY LYNCH DO ANYTHING, AND MORE". PWInsider.
- Pappolla, Ryan (19 March 2019). "The IIconics def. Sasha Banks & Bayley". WWE. Retrieved 23 April 2019.
- Trionfo, Richard (19 March 2019). "WWE SMACKDOWN REPORT: THE GAUNTLET AND MORE". PWInsider.
- Trionfo, Richard (12 March 2019). "WWE SMACKDOWN REPORT: THE ODDS ARE AGAINST KOFI NEXT WEEK, PROBLEMS WITH MANDY AND SONYA, AJ AND RANDY TALK HISTORY, AND MORE". PWInsider.
- Trionfo, Richard (19 March 2019). "WWE SMACKDOWN REPORT: THE GAUNTLET AND MORE". PWInsider.
- Trionfo, Richard (1 April 2019). "WWE RAW REPORT: STAKES ARE RAISED FOR THE MAIN EVENT, SETH SENDS A MESSAGE TO BROCK, DAVE HAS A MESSAGE FOR HUNTER, AND MORE". PWInsider.
- Carapola, Stuart (7 April 2019). "COMPLETE WRESTLEMANIA 35 COVERAGE: NEW CHAMPIONS ARE CROWNED, TRIPLE H PUTS HIS CAREER ON THE LINE, DOES KOFI GET HIS MOMENT, THE WOMEN MAKE HISTORY WITH ALL THE GOLD ON THE LINE, AND MORE". PWInsider.
- Parry, Josh (15 January 2015). "NXT spoilers from Full Sail University". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 15 January 2015.
- Carapola, Stuart (9 April 2019). "WWE SMACKDOWN REPORT: KOFI'S CELEBRATION, SAMI PULLS A LACEY, TAG TITLE MATCH TIMES TWO, AND MORE". PWInsider.
- Benigno, Anthony. "WWE Women's Tag Team Champions The IIconics def. Alexa Bliss & Nikki Cross". WWE. Retrieved 5 July 2019.
- Pappolla, Ryan. "The Kabuki Warriors def. WWE Women's Tag Team Champions The IIconics via count-out". WWE.com. Retrieved 16 July 2019.
- Benigno, Anthony. "Alexa Bliss & Nikki Cross def. The IIconics, The Kabuki Warriors and Mandy Rose & Sonya Deville to become the new WWE Women's Tag Team Champions (Fatal 4-Way Elimination Match)". WWE.com. Retrieved 5 August 2019.
- "The Bump reveals additional Superstars headed to Raw and SmackDown". WWE.com. 16 October 2019. Retrieved 16 October 2019.
- Melok, Bobby. "Raw results, May 11, 2020: Orton challenges Edge to a wrestling match". WWE.com. Retrieved 11 May 2020.
- Staff, WWE.com (9 October 2020). "See all the results from the 2020 Draft". WWE. Archived from the original on 13 October 2020. Retrieved 19 April 2021.
- Silverstein, Adam (13 October 2020). "2020 WWE Draft results: SmackDown and Raw rosters, picks, all undrafted superstars". CBS Sports. Archived from the original on 13 October 2020. Retrieved 19 April 2021.
- Mendoza, Jordan (15 April 2021). "Fans unhappy after WWE releases superstars including Billie Kay, Peyton Royce and Samoa Joe". USA Today. Retrieved 17 April 2021.
- Staff, WWE.com (15 April 2021). "Samoa Joe, Billie Kay, Mickie James and other Superstars released". WWE. Retrieved 17 April 2021.
- "The IIconics Say They Are A Package Deal, Discuss Potentially Signing With AEW Or IMPACT | Fightful News". www.fightful.com. Retrieved 10 October 2021.
- "The Iiconics Appear To Have New Tag Team Name For When They Return To Ring". TheSportster. 20 June 2021. Retrieved 10 October 2021.
- "The Iiconics Reveal New Name and Upcoming Tour". 27 August 2021.
- Impact Wrestling Staff (9 October 2021). "The IInspiration Is Coming to Bound For Glory". Impact Wrestling. Retrieved 10 October 2021.
- Guzzo, Gisberto (9 October 2021). "IMPACT Wrestling Announces That The IInspiration Will Be At Bound For Glory 2021". Fightful. Retrieved 10 October 2021.
- Impact Wrestling Staff (23 October 2021). "Bound For Glory 2021 Results". Impact Wrestling. Retrieved 24 October 2021.
- Moore, John (23 October 2021). "10/23 Moore's Impact Wrestling Bound For Glory live review: Christian Cage vs. Josh Alexander for the Impact World Championship, Deonna Purrazzo vs. Mickie James for the Knockouts Title, Steve Maclin vs. Trey Miguel vs. El Phantasmo for the vacant X Division Title, Call Your Shot gauntlet". Pro Wrestling Dot Net. Retrieved 23 October 2021.
- IMPACT Wrestling Staff (20 November 2021). "Turning Point 2021 Results". Impact Wrestling. Archived from the original on 16 April 2022. Retrieved 21 November 2021.
- IMPACT Wrestling Staff (5 March 2022). "Sacrifice 2022 Full Results". Impact Wrestling. Archived from the original on 6 March 2022. Retrieved 6 March 2022.
- Carey, Ian (5 March 2022). "Impact Sacrifice live results: Six title matches". Wrestling Observer Figure Four Online. Archived from the original on 6 March 2022. Retrieved 6 March 2022.
- IMPACT Wrestling Staff (23 April 2022). "Rebellion 2022 Full Results". Impact Wrestling. Archived from the original on 27 April 2022. Retrieved 23 April 2022.
- Powell, Jason (23 April 2022). "4/23 Impact Wrestling Rebellion results: Powell's review of Moose vs. Josh Alexander for the Impact World Championship, Deonna Purrazzo vs. Taya Valkyrie for the AAA Reina De Reinas Title, Jonah vs. Tomohiro Ishii, Trey Miguel vs. Ace Austin vs. Mike Bailey for the X Division Title, Jay White vs. Steve Maclin vs. Chris Sabin". Pro Wrestling Dot Net. Archived from the original on 25 April 2022. Retrieved 23 April 2022.
- IMPACT Wrestling Staff (27 April 2022). "The IInspiration Stepping Away From In-Ring Action". Impact Wrestling.
- Lambert, Jeremy (27 April 2022). "The IInspiration Announce They Are Stepping Away From In-Ring Action". Fightful. Retrieved 27 April 2022.
- Artus, Matthew. "The New Day arrive with 47 Superstars in final WWE 2K18 roster reveal update". WWE. Retrieved 3 May 2018.
- "Off Her Chops on Apple Podcasts".
- "Impact Knockouts Tag Team Championship History".
- "Nine Female Tag Teams land on PWI's Tag Team 50 list". Diva Dirt. 22 November 2020. Retrieved 22 November 2020.
- "WWE Women's Tag Team Championship". WWE. Retrieved 16 March 2020.