The Ascension is no more, but Big Kon and Vik are ready to hit the road with a new name and a new direction.
The former NXT Tag Team Champions recently spoke with WrestleZone Managing Editor Bill Pritchard about their WWE career and what is next for them in the squared circle. While quarantine has halted most of the country’s plans, one thing the two did decide on was a new team name. No longer able to use their original WWE names, Big Kon and Vik revealed that they toyed around with the idea of calling themselves “FKA” before choosing “The Awakening.”
Vik noted that the new moniker was recently suggested to them and something just clicked, with Big Kon adding that it’s an evolution without changing everything fans liked about them.
“We just got our new name basically, thankfully enough. We were going to use ‘FKA’ for the time being just because we liked that. We knew everybody just knew us as The Ascension for the longest time, and to jump off [of that], we couldn’t really figure it out for a while,” Viktor said. “We’d been talking back and forth so much, going through all of these other ideas and it kinda got presented to us the other week via interview… do you want to tell him?”
“The Awakening. It’s like it’s the next step up from The Ascension,” Big Kon added. “It’s still got that connection so the fans can understand it and it’s something that Vik and I think is badass regardless.”
Big Kon and Viktor weren’t being used much by WWE towards the end of their run, so needing to prepare for a post-WWE life didn’t come as much of a surprise. Vik says he needed the time away, with Big Kon comparing it to a toxic relationship. He stressed that he’s still very grateful for their tenure because they achieved a high level of success, but noted that it was a business decision and they knew how it was.
The team got cut in December 2019, finally hit the open market after their 90-day non-compete clauses expired in February. They spoke about having some dates lined up, including overseas plans that were going to happen, but then COVID-19 hit and put everything they had going on hold. Big Kon says there are some positives to their situation like getting more time with fans and seeing what else is out there, but the pandemic has hurt them in other ways like canceling plans for their television return.
“I know for a fact that had this not happened, Vik and I would be on your tube right now. I’m not going to say much about it—but it was what it was. You start thinking outside the box and you start taking advantage,” Big Kon said. “One thing that I will say that’s been absolutely phenomenal has been about this thing, not that this is a great situation for anybody, but it’s allowed Vik and I to come out and tell our story a little more, otherwise we wouldn’t have done it. So that’s been the nice thing, unfortunately with us being on lockdown, is we have to think outside of the box and do interviews.”
“We were pissed at first because, like everybody else, we had just started rolling. We were super excited and all of the stuff that we had done, even just those couple weeks,” Vik said, “we were having so much fun being out there and just seeing how much the landscape had changed. Both of us had been with WWE for ten years and you don’t get out there that much into the world of wrestling.”
Later in the interview, the two said that they’ve been able to resume talks with wrestling promotions now that things seem to be normalizing, but wouldn’t elaborate on where we might see them next. With All Elite Wrestling, Ring Of Honor, IMPACT Wrestling and many others having television shows the possibilities are wide open, but all Vik would say is you’ll know where they land when they walk down that ramp and see them on your TV screens.