This could explain a lot of things, like why the IIconics won the Women’s Tag Team titles at WrestleMania 35, why Bayley & Sasha Banks were split up after losing the belts, and why Brie & Nikki Bella were announcing their retirements again when we thought they were already retired.
It doesn’t explain why it’s taken WWE three months and counting to come up with a new plan for Peyton Royce & Billie Kay’s championship reign. But anyway…
According to the Bellas (from the July 3 edition of their podcast, transcription courtesy Fightful), the plan was for Nikki & Brie to show after ‘Mania to start a feud with the IIconics.
Nikki: So Brie and I, we were gonna come back and fight for the tag titles after WrestleMania and we were gonna go against The IIconics for a few months — it was gonna be a lot of fun, really excited and you know, deep down inside, I kept having this weird feeling that I needed to get an X-ray on my neck, because for a while I wasn’t feeling okay. Brie knows, that in December, after Evolution, I just kept telling her, “Brie, I feel off.” Like, my head doesn’t feel right and I just kept feeling off and I even told her, “Do you think I’m just super unhealthy?” But I live a very healthy lifestyle but I couldn’t figure it out.
Brie: But before, to everyone, we had our gear. We had everything!
Nikki: I mean, we were ready. Bella Twins were coming back in a big way.
Brie: The Smackdown after WrestleMania. I mean, we had it all planned out. We were in New York thinking it’s still happening.
Even though Nikki was technically the heel in her feud with Ronda Rousey last fall, WWE would expect them to get a positive reaction for a surprise return, and would therefore want a heel team holding the Women’s Tag titles. Putting the members of the Boss ‘n’ Hug Connection on different brands would address why they weren’t trying to reclaim the belts they’d lobbied for in the first place.
In retrospect, making these moves for a comeback that wasn’t set in stone maybe wasn’t the best idea. It’s actually worked out pretty well for the Hugster, but otherwise, it allegedly drove The Boss away from the company and left Kay, Royce & the new titles spinning their wheels.
Or, another way of looking at it, Banks seems happy & might even be back soon, the IIconics seem to at worst be maintaining their popularity from the sidelines, and maybe the Kabuki Warriors will end up getting a rub out of the whole shebang.
All a part of a story that never ends.