The WWE's destructive trio, The Shield, needs three men to step up as worthy long-term rivals.
The company has a chance to construct a feud to build future pay-per-views on, one that could enthrall fans for months. So far, WWE has pitted Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose against an assortment of motley crews. That won't do.
Like the Freebirds needed the Von Erichs, The Shield needs a consistent team of enemies in order to thrive.
Wednesday's Main Event saw The Shield take on the team of Kofi Kingston and Tons of Funk. This kind of slipshod grouping is what WWE will have to continue to rely upon if it doesn't find a sustainable alternative for the long run.
The super teams that the Hounds of Justice have faced so far have led to exciting matches. Each battle has been a one-time thrill ride. Team Hell No and Ryback, and Sheamus, Randy Orton and Big Show were both mighty groups, but not ones that could last.
For the best answer to this quandary WWE should look to the past: The aforementioned Freebirds vs. The Von Erichs, perhaps the greatest feud in wrestling history.
Eric Gargiulo of CamelClutchBlog.com wrote about that rivalry, saying that few feuds "will match the intensity of a screaming Texas crowd witnessing their hometown heroes battling their arch nemesis." While no one may ever reach that apex of drama again, something close to it should be the goal.
Listen to the crowd react to these long-time enemies in this match from 1984.
If The Shield and its eventual rival get a third of that reaction, WWE will be plenty pleased.
Building up The Shield as an unstoppable, cohesive unit has been a brilliant move. Reigns, Rollins and Ambrose have yet to be defeated. They have met and succeeded at every challenge.
Eventually, the three must fall.
However, having a random of collection of wrestlers be the ones to bring down The Shield will feel empty. WWE would be better off hyping up a group of three heroes, to plant the seeds for a future showdown.
These men would be the light to The Shield's darkness, the purity to their heartlessness.
The way the pack of dogs mentality has strengthened all three members of The Shield, some meandering good guys could benefit from forming their own cabal. WWE can't mix and match in order to find The Shield new rivals forever. There needs to be a long-term plan.
Cobra needs GI Joe. The Brotherhood of Mutants needs the X-Men. Eventually, The Shield needs an equal as well.
Perhaps this is the best way to get Christian back into the mix. Maybe it's the way to make a bigger star out of Kofi Kingston. The options are plentiful.
Now that The Shield's momentum is charging along like a rhino, WWE must find a group of beasts to best the trio.