WWE has released dozens of performers and other staff over the past couple of years. Some of those decisions left fans, and other wrestlers, stunned. Vik, who performed as Viktor in The Ascension in WWE, recalled his shock after Fandango and Tyler Breeze were let go in June.
“They had had a thing on the [WWE Network] probably like two weeks before where they were going through all the greatest [WWE] tag teams of all time,” Vik recalled on the Two Man Power Trip of Wrestling podcast. “And I’d watched a little bit of it. And I’d laughed and said to myself, ‘These guys are made for life,’ and then two weeks later they got released. I thought, ‘What the hell?’ I was just – I just don’t know what this company is thinking anymore.”
WWE released Vik and his tag team partner Konnor in 2019. It ended a lengthy run in the company for Vik. John Laurinaitis signed him in 2011 to a developmental contract, and the former Superstar reflected on the journey that led to the day he was signed.
“The Johnny Ace that I first met when I was trying to get hired was not the same guy I knew as a producer once I was hired,” Vik recalled. “And it was just very strange and I could never – I was even telling Konnor I go, ‘I just can’t figure it out.’ Because it was like two different people. And it wasn’t like the first one that I met was like a d*ck or something like that. He just seemed just very full of himself at the time.
“One of his favorite lines, when we were extras in the back, was like, ‘Hey you kids probably don’t even know who I am. I was only ever over in Japan and wasn’t even really over there. How did I ever get to be Vince’s right-hand man? Doesn’t make sense. But here I am.’ I heard him say that almost every time I was an extra. I was like, ‘Ok. Whatever, Johnny.'”
The Ascension worked more closely with John Laurinaitis after the team was called up from NXT to WWE’s main roster. Vik says Laurinaitis was one of his favorite producers.
“Probably him and [Arn Anderson] were two of my favorite producers,” Vik explained. “They always had ideas for everybody. And they were always trying to bring out the best that they could in everybody. Not saying that the other producers don’t, but those two guys – I just felt like they really knew kinda the talent that they were working with better than other people.
“I’ve had it where certain producers, they have ideas in their head. But it’s a type of match that they would work and that’s not always how it goes,” Vik continued. “You know what I mean? Because how they might be isn’t how you work. And sometimes it just doesn’t work out that way. [Laurinaitis and Anderson] specifically, they kinda really took into account every moving piece, how they were, and just how to put it all together properly. And they’re great.”
Have a news tip or correction? Send it to [email protected]