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The Shield is a World Wrestling Entertainment professional wrestling stable. The Shield originally consisted of Dean Ambrose, Roman Reigns, and Seth Rollins. The group debuted on November 18, 2012 at the Survivor Series pay-per-view, and later declared their intention to fight what they perceive as "injustice". The Shield is disbanded as of June 20, 2014.
Too soon? The WWE Universe is largely (and justly) still a little raw from Seth Rollins stabbing his boys in the back a few months ago, and what makes the former Architect’s bait-and-switch all the worse is that he was also one-half of The Hounds of Justice’s record-setting tag team coalition alongside Roman Reigns. Holding the twin titles with Roman Reigns for 145 days, these two not only proved they could survive outside the more secure six-man stipulation that was The Shield’s specialty, it also helped mold Reigns into the five-tool annihilator the WWE Universe sees today. For proof, take a look at the 2013 Money in the Bank Kickoff title defense against The Usos, a heartstopper of a match that shows just what these two guys were about, and why we may never see their like again for a long, long time. Believe it.
#5 The Shield vs. Evolution — No Holds Barred Elimination Match (Payback 2014)
Are you a man of science? Or are you a man of faith? These two opposing viewpoints collided on a hot summer night in Chicago. In the corner of science: Evolution. “Adapt or perish,” they would say. Still, WWE fans collectively agreed to put all of their faith in Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns. And after The Shield conquered the establishment the previous month at Extreme Rules, the future was clearly theirs.
In the return bout at WWE Payback, the odds certainly seemed to be in Evolution’s favor. They scientifically decimated each member of The Shield, but as Evolution stood above their fallen prey at the top of the ramp, here came Seth Rollins. Out of nowhere, the group’s daredevil stunningly soared from atop the entryway, plummeting onto his rivals. That was the turning point The Hounds of Justice needed to believe in themselves again. Then came the eliminations. First Batista, then Orton, and finally, The King of Kings, himself.
We all believed in a clean sweep. All it took? A leap of faith. — ZACH LINDER
#1 The Shield vs. The Wyatt Family (Elimination Chamber)
Among the many disappointments that spread from the breakup of The Shield just a few months after this match was that the WWE Universe didn’t get to see The Hounds of Justice go toe-to-toe with Bray Wyatt and his brood for years and years to come. Instead of the first installment of a long, storied rivalry, the WWE Universe got lightning in a bottle, a six-way brawl that ignited “THIS IS AWE-SOME!” chants before a single punch had been thrown.
Appropriately enough, this was perhaps one of the least-civilized six-man tags in WWE history. Dean Ambrose went feral before the match even started and was ultimately dispatched to Parts Unknown by Bray Wyatt, himself. Seth Rollins, who all but negated gravity in the match’s opening moments, was plowed through the announce table and Roman Reigns’ gallant last stand was snuffed out by The Wyatts’ grim variation of The Shield’s own numbers game. Triple H compared this match to “Armageddon” itself, and he wasn’t far off the mark. With broken bodies, broken tables and the WWE Universe left exhausted and exalted, maybe it’s better The Shield broke up after all. Matches like this should be rare. That only makes them all the more awesome. — ANTHONY BENIGNO
#27 The Shield vs. The Wyatt Family (March 3, 2014)
What’s more epic than Armageddon? How about Armageddon: Round Two? In a rematch of the Elimination Chamber contest Triple H compared to the End of Days itself, The Shield and The Wyatt Family put on a hellacious fight for a ravenous Chicago crowd that would have been satisfied with nothing less.
Though the bout lived up to its billing, the struggling Hounds of Justice’s raise-hell mindset was outdone by The Wyatts’ match-specific game plan: Keep Roman Reigns out of the contest. The backwoods brutes managed to do so, though they owed an assist to Seth Rollins, who left his teammates high and dry in a fit of frustration (should’ve seen it coming, in hindsight). Minutes later, the undermanned Hounds of Justice were summarily reduced to dog chow by The Eater of Worlds and his brethren, with Bray himself scoring the decisive Sister Abigail on Dean Ambrose.
The WWE Universe inside the Allstate Arena was chanting “This is awesome” before the match even started. It still hasn’t stopped
#17 Team Hell No & Kofi Kingston vs. The Shield (May 20, 2013)
With their Tag Team and U.S. Championships lost to The Shield at Extreme Rules the night before and nothing left but their pride on the line, the trio of fan favorites took it to the “Hounds of Justice” with everything they had. The effort brought The Shield as close as they’d ever come at that point to a clean defeat and left the WWE Universe on the edge of their seats. Refusing to give ground to the men in black’s infamous “numbers game,” Kingston, Bryan & Kane worked as seamlessly as their rough-and-tumble opponents, combining styles and movesets and never letting The Shield build so much momentum they couldn’t get it back.
The strategy ultimately failed when, after dispatching Kofi and Bryan on the outside, Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose sacrificed themselves to a surging Kane so Roman Reigns could finish the job, but the result hardly even mattered: The match was a master class in tag-team and individual wrestling, with six performers of various tenure all competing at the peak of their powers and truly leaving it all on the mat. “This is awesome” is the typical reaction for a match like this, but in the brief history of three-hour Raws, that’s certainly in the running for biggest understatement.
In an intriguing SmackDown main event, the combatant in the WWE World Heavyweight Championship Ladder Match at Money in the Bank squared off in a 4-on-3 Handicap bout, with United States Champion Sheamus, Roman Reigns and John Cena going head-to-head with Bray Wyatt, Alberto Del Rio, Cesaro and Randy Orton.
In the height of the fierce encounter, Reigns was finally tagged into the powder keg of a contest. This resulted in the “volcanic” Superstar unleashing absolutely aggression on every one of his opponents, before hitting Del Rio with The Spear to give himself, The Celtic Warrior and the leader of the Cenation the victory.