Call them a Nexus-rehash if you will, but The Shield has been brilliant in the ring several times over.
Each time Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose debut on a new show or pay-per-view, they compose a masterwork and they win. Their undefeated streak as a team has been a much talked about subject, but The Shield has also managed to pack a number of classics into its resume already.
It's fun to project when the unit might dissolve or if a fourth member will take over at some point, but it's far more enjoyable to sit back and watch their buzzing attack at work.
The 3-on-1 handicap match against Ryback on the Dec. 31 WWE Raw never really got underway so it's not included here. The rest of The Shield’s TV and pay-per-view matches are ranked here based on how thrilling and how memorable they were.
The Shield's WWE Main Event debut saw the team face the dance-happy Tons of Funk and the high-flying Kofi Kingston.
For as short as it was and for having no buildup at all, the match was a decent showing. Mostly, The Shield was dominant, swarming on Tensai, stomping him in the corner.
Kofi was the only one to manage any sustained offense. His high energy and speed had him doing well for awhile, but in the end, he fell. Rollins drove a flying knee into the side of his head.
Brodus Clay had thoughts of breaking up the pin, but Roman Reigns crashed into him with a spear.
This remains The Shield's least thrilling performance because of the shortness of the match and the low supply of big moments.
Even as short as this match was, The Shield was able to produce a decent dose of excitement.
The hodgepodge team of Zack Ryder, Justin Gabriel and Great Khali got very little offense in. Ryder did manage to nail a few dropkicks but was soon overwhelmed by The Shield. Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose and Roman Reigns took turns pounding on him.
The Shield seemed insulted that WWE would pit it against such an inferior team and even irritated that Khali, Ryder and Gabriel would fight back at all.
In the end, Ambrose held Gabriel down with a bow and arrow hold as Rollins crashed down on him.
This match was more a WrestleMania 29 warm-up than anything else. The Shield's WrestleMania opponents, Big Show, Sheamus and Randy Orton, charged down to the ring after the action was over. Ryder, Gabriel and Khali served as proof of The Shield's dominance and as stepping stones.
The Shield's most recent match looked like it might not happen at all.
John Cena and Ryback were set to face Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose in a handicap match, but Cena's injured Achilles led Ryback to back out. He said he couldn't trust Cena as hurt as he was.
Instead, Team Hell No paired with Cena to take on The Hounds of Justice.
The six men began with a brawl until the chaos settled down to an actual match. The story here was Cena's injury. He tried to grit through the pain, but after a few moves, he would wince and then hobble back onto the apron.
Team Hell No still managed to control the match for some time. They kept Ambrose in the corner and manhandled him for a few moments. Later it was Daniel Bryan who was isolated in his foes' corner, fighting valiantly to avoid the loss.
Cena saw his partners struggle without him and so forced his way back into the action. He had the Attitude Adjustment ready to go, but his injured foot derailed him. A spear from Reigns finished him off.
The Shield's WrestleMania debut needed only a few more beats to be a grand symphony. As it stands, it was an exciting match built around the story of mistrust among Big Show, Sheamus and Randy Orton.
The bout opened with Sheamus and Roman Reigns slugging it out. Sheamus and Orton felt uneasy about letting Big Show in on the action, so the big man had to force his way into the fray.
After a series of chest-reddening chops on Dean Ambrose, Big Show became the surprise weak link. The Shield tagged in and out and kept the World's Largest Athlete off his feet. Seth Rollins flew at him; Reigns pounded on him.
The match was full of moments like these and the same buzzing energy fans have grown to expect from The Shield. Ambrose pinned Orton to end one of the better matches of the night.
Big Show capped things off by knocking his teammates out in frustration.
This WWE Raw clash continued The Shield's impressive run of thrilling matches.
The newest super team assembled to stop them consisted of Chris Jericho, Sheamus and Ryback. At first, the teams were somewhat disjointed. Jericho faced off against Dean Ambrose. Sheamus battled Roman Reigns.
The Shield wasn't as dominant here as it had been in the past. Sheamus looked ready to put Reigns away when he set up for the Brogue Kick. Ambrose yanked his partner out of harm's way just in time.
The attack soon centered on Ryback. The Shield isolated him, punishing him in the corner. Ambrose, Reigns and Seth Rollins took turns choking him on the rope.
When Jericho was tagged in, he infused the action with his high energy. He dashed around the ring, knocking his opponents off their feet, including a gorgeous springboard kick to Rollins on the apron.
The energy of the match in general picked up here, steamrolling toward the finish. Things began to unravel. The chaotic action saw Ryback and Reigns brawl on the outside as The Shield swarmed on Jericho.
Jericho had the match won with the Walls of Jericho, but a knee to the temple courtesy of Rollins ended that.
Some fans may have expected this to be John Cena, Sheamus and Ryback knocking around The Shield, making the group pay for its transgressions, but that was not the case. This match served as a showcase of The Shield's overwhelming cohesion, of its ability to swarm opponents like insects.
The brawl-heavy opening led to a slower pace, to Cena taking a major beating.
Roman Reigns, Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins looked like brilliant strategists, managing, as always, to maintain an advantage. The team moved fluidly and was a thrill to watch the whole time.
Rollins flew around the ring. Ambrose made every move he took look like true agony.
Ryback eventually answered the fans' chants of "Feed me more!" He charged in, cleaned house and looked ready to take the victory for his team.
Instead, Reigns speared Ryback, Rollins fell on top of Big Hungry and The Shield pulled off the upset.
The match mixed brawling and wrestling well. It had much of the same frenetic energy that The Shield's TLC 2012 match had. It was proof that the victory at TLC match was no fluke in either result or quality.
The Shield took full advantage of The Undertaker's rare performance on WWE Raw, adding to its impressive resume.
A sneak attack on Kane and Daniel Bryan made it look like The Undertaker would be forced to fight The Shield alone. Bryan and Kane eventually sprinted down to help after The Shield had worn down Undertaker with its numbers advantage.
Team Hell No and Undertaker worked as the more cohesive unit in the opening moments. Undertaker and Kane took turns clobbering Dean Ambrose, and Kane catapulted Bryan into Reigns.
Eventually, though, The Shield began to do what it does best: overpower.
Both teams showed great chemistry. Both teams hit some of their best moves. The momentum shifted constantly.
It was a match that took fans on an engrossing journey. Asked to clash with an icon, The Shield used the opportunity to proclaim that it is the future.
The Shield's in-ring debut remains its opus.
Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose and Roman Reigns introduced themselves to WWE audiences loudly and with an impactful force. An infectious wildness pervaded throughout the match.
Adrenaline powered the action beyond the initial brawl, earning well-deserved, "This is awesome!" chants from the Barclays Center fans.
The Shield's teamwork was machine-like, always managing to find a way to outnumber its opponents despite the match being three versus three. Reigns, Rollins and Ambrose sent Ryback through a table and speared Kane through the security barricade before burying him in debris.
Ryback, Kane and Daniel Bryan all had their bursts of heroism, but eventually the wolves won out. From the opening to the climax, the six men involved held tight to our attention and did not let go.