Over the past few decades, WWE has put together many unlikely groups of superstars and allowed them to find their feet as part of their programming. These stables, or factions, have made up a lot of history in WWE, and since the company recently decided to allow The Shield to reunite after three years, it’s a fantastic time to look back at some of the greatest WWE factions of all time and the ones that didn’t quite make the cut.
The Shield has been referred to as one of the most dominant factions in WWE history, and there is a reason for this. Since the split back in 2014, the trio has gone on to take over WWE as singles stars and incredibly still found their way back to each other.
In the modern era, there is no team that can hold a candle to The Shield, but there are a number of other WWE factions that have come and gone in WWE over the past few decades and they remain nothing more than a memory, since they were unable to connect with the WWE Universe through either lack of confidence from the creative team or just lack of direction on WWE TV.
The following list looks at eight of the worst WWE factions in WWE history, as well as seven that made a difference when they were in the ring, and if we could turn back the clock, the WWE Universe would definitely want to see them again.
15. Worst: Vince’s Devils
Vince’s Devils was a stable made up of Victoria, Candice Michelle and Torrie Wilson. The trio were part of WWE’s Women’s Division at a time when it was all about looks and who could suck up to Vince McMahon the most.
Whilst Torrie and Candice went on to be Playboy cover girls and Candice and Victoria are former Women’s Champions, as a group they were never able to achieve much until they all went their separate ways. The group decided to target women like Mickie James and Trish Stratus when it was quite obvious that they had no chance against them, so it was hard for the WWE Universe to have much faith in them. Vince’s Devils were a team that was formed when the trio began helping each other out in matches back in 2005 but their alliance only lasted up until 2006 when there was obvious jealousy between the women. Before they were known as Vince’s Devils, the group was known as The Ladies In Pink.
14. Best: The Four Horseman
Ric Flair, Tully Blanchard, Arn Anderson and Ole Anderson all made up The Four Horseman of WWE back in the 1980s. The group are considered to be one of the best wrestling stables of all time after they dominated the world of professional wrestling for more than a decade.
The group are now all WWE Hall of Famers and went into the WWE Hall of Fame as The Four Horsemen back in 2012. This was the second time that Flair was inducted into the class and is the only two-time Hall of Famer in WWE history. The Four Horseman have created such a legacy in WWE that the company have decided to continue this with the Four Horsewomen who have dominated both NXT and WWE’s main roster Women’s Divisions over the past few years. There has been no team in more than two decades that has been able to recreate what The Four Horseman had.
13. Worst: 3MB
“We’re a three man band!” That was the music that would inform the WWE Universe that 3MB was about to make their entrance and it was highly likely that they were about to get beaten and humiliated.
Heath Slater, Jinder Mahal, and Drew McIntyre made up the group of jobbers that WWE decided to put together back in 2012. The group were mostly used as talent enhancers and one of the main teams who were regularly humiliated by The Shield. The band split when Jinder and Drew were released from WWE back in 2014. Shockingly, Jinder has since returned to WWE and is the current WWE Champion whilst Drew made his return a few months ago and is the reigning NXT Champion. Heath Slater went undefeated in last year’s WWE draft but later went on to become one half of the first ever SmackDown Tag Team Champion. What a difference a few years can make.
12. Best: The Nexus
The first season of NXT back in 2010 featured eight rookies competing for a WWE contract. At the end of the season, Wade Barrett was announced as the winner, but this didn’t sit too well with the other competitors on the show.
The group decided to invade Monday Night Raw and wreaked havoc, attacking John Cena following his match, as well as everyone who was part of the ringside area. The group were given the name The Nexus with Wade Barrett as their leader until CM Punk took charge of the group. One of their biggest storylines was when they attacked John Cena and he then decided to make the war personal with the rookies. Sadly, The Nexus all went their separate ways in 2011 with the likes of David Otunga, Ryback, Wade Barrett, Daniel Bryan, Curtis Axel, and Bray Wyatt all going on to become household names in WWE.
11. Worst: League Of Nations
WWE formed a group called The League of Nations back in November 2015, as Irishman Sheamus, Mexican Alberto Del Rio, “The Bulgarian Brute” Rusev and English born Wade Barrett all came together to represent their respective nations outside of America and then deliver various anti-American sentiments.
The group mainly focused a lot of their hate towards Roman Reigns, who at the time wasn’t the best liked WWE star anyway. Roman went on to win the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at Survivor Series before Sheamus cashed in his Money in the Bank contract. The New Day later came into the picture and made jokes about the team, which voiced exactly what the WWE Universe was thinking about the group at the time. Following WrestleMania back in 2016, the tension between the members of the group finally saw them split. This was then followed by Barrett and Del Rio’s exits from the company.
10. Best: Evolution
Back in 2003, Triple H formed a WWE faction with members that were supposed to represent the evolution of WWE over the past few years and the years to come. The Game brought together the legend known as Ric Flair, and young guns Batista and Randy Orton.
The group became known as Evolution and held a stranglehold on WWE over for a number of years, until Orton managed to outlive his potential and Triple H and Batista then felt the need to teach The Viper a lesson, which then marked the end of the group. Evolution reformed back in 2014, when it seemed as though The Shield would take over WWE so the group came back together to try and fight the Hounds of Justice. Sadly, the group was beaten twice at consecutive pay-per-views by The Shield and Batista then walked away from the company, which later led to The Shield’s split.
9. Worst: The Social Outcasts
The Social Outcasts was another team that WWE decided to put together. The members were basically a group of jobbers who were never given much of a chance in the company.
The group consisted of Curtis Axel, Adam Rose, Heath Slater and Bo Dallas. They made their debut in January 2016 when they came out and assisted Heath Slater during his match with Dolph Ziggler on Raw. The group was never going to last very long and was only there to make up the numbers for a few months before the group split in the summer following a number of losses in tag team action. Adam Rose was released from the company whilst the group was still together, which ruined any plans WWE had for the group moving forward, but the nicest thing the company ever did was allow the four stars to go their separate ways.
8. Best: The New Day
The New Day made their WWE debut back in 2014 and it seemed as though it was a gimmick that wasn’t going to go over well with the WWE Universe. The group worked hard and managed to become fan favourites after few months before they were given the Tag Team Championships.
In 2016, The New Day became the longest reigning Tag Team Champions in WWE history when they beat the record, previously held by Demolition back in December. New Day was then moved over to SmackDown Live during the Superstar Shakeup earlier this year and made history last week when they defended their Tag Team Championships inside Hell in a Cell for the first time. The New Day is now a two-time SmackDown Tag Team Champions and is the only team in WWE currently to have held both SmackDown and Raw Tag Team gold. The group consistently pull out incredible matches and right now, the WWE Universe are enjoying having the trio around.
7. Worst: The Wyatt Family
The Wyatt Family made their WWE debut on the main roster back in 2013 and seemed as though they were the only team that could step up to The Shield. When the groups faced each other on pay-per-view or Monday Night Raw, The Wyatt Family was undefeated, but that was all the group ever really achieved.
Luke Harper, Erick Rowan and Bray Wyatt had some of the craziest storylines in WWE history as the group turned on each other a number of times before rejoining. The likes of Randy Orton and Daniel Bryan have also joined the group over the past few years only to then turn on them. The only time The Wyatt’s really looked unstoppable was when Braun Strowman joined and he seems to be doing much better on his own. WWE has never known how to book Bray Wyatt and his current storyline is a fantastic example of this.
6. Best: The New World Order
It is hard to write a list about some of the best ever WWE factions without mentioning The nWo. The New World Order was formed after Scott Hall and Kevin Nash left WWE back in 1996 and invaded WCW, when they were known as The Outsiders. The duo went on to tell the WCW Universe that there was a revolution coming and in one of the biggest shocks in the history of professional wrestling, Hulk Hogan was revealed as the third member of the group.
The group later became known as The New World Order and were the biggest attraction in WCW for a number of years. In the years that followed, The nWo went on to include more than 20 members. The group has seen a number of revivals over the past few years with nWo 2000 and nWo Hollywood, but the original trio of Hall, Nash and Hogan is the group that made the difference when it comes to WCW in the 1990s.
5. Worst: The Alliance
The Alliance was formed after Vince McMahon thought that he had purchased WCW, when in fact, his son Shane had. Stephanie McMahon then teamed up with her brother after she recently purchased ECW and the duo attempted to put their father out of business.
The only problem was that the Monday Night Wars were dead. It was slightly pointless pitting these shows against each other when they were all owned by WWE at that point. The Alliance had the potential to be one of the greatest stables in wrestling history, but egos and pride became their biggest downfalls and WWE overestimated many of their stars, since they needed the likes of Stone Cold Steve Austin and Kurt Angle to put them over so that they could look like a vaguely credible group. The Alliance was another group that had so much potential but sadly failed to live up to it.
4. Best: D Generation-X
D Generation-X has had a number of members and reunions over the past few years but the faction was originally formed by Triple H, Shawn Michaels, Chyna, and Rick Rude back in the 1990s. The group became well-known for crossing lines and stepping over boundaries, in a way that they could have only gotten away with during the Attitude Era.
X-Pac and The New Age Outlaws later joined the group and their antics continued, with DX once deciding to invade WCW in one of the most iconic and memorable moments in the history of sports entertainment. The group slowly came to an end after a few years, as the stars began storylines outside of the group and Chyna was released from the company. However, there was a short-lived revival of DX back in 2006 that saw HBK and Triple H continue the antics that the group became well-known for in the modern era.
3. Worst: Team Bella
When the 2015 Divas Revolution was in full swing, the likes of Sasha Banks, Charlotte and Becky Lynch were promoted to the main roster, which saw Alicia Fox and Nikki and Brie Bella join forces to create a group called Team Bella. At the time there was Team BAD, Team PCB, and Team Bella, and the latter were definitely the worst.
The three women remained together for a number of months as they tried their best to ensure that Nikki Bella broke AJ Lee‘s record and became the longest reigning Divas Champion. They knew that they couldn’t contend with the ability that the women from NXT had, so they decided to use cheat tactics, like when they would decide to use Twin Magic to fool referees in their matches. The group disbanded when Nikki lost her Divas Championship, since she was forced onto the sidelines so that she could undergo career-threatening neck surgery.
2. Best: The Shield
The Shield is without a doubt one of the most dominant WWE stables in the history of WWE. The team debuted at Survivor Series back in 2012 and was on a path of destruction up until their split back in 2014. The Shield stood for injustice in WWE and debuted as a heel faction.
Since then, Seth Rollins, Roman Reigns, and Dean Ambrose have all become main event calibre superstars, and are all former World Champions in their own right. Recently, WWE decided it was the perfect time for the group to reunite, as the members all finally have a common enemy once again. The Shield now heads into a four on three handicap match at TLC next weekend, in their first match as a trio since Payback in 2014.
1. Worst: The Spirit Squad
The Spirit Squad joined WWE back in 2006 and went on to play an integral part in the feud between Vince McMahon and Shawn Michaels that finally ended at WrestleMania 22. The group consisted of five male cheerleaders called Johnny, Nick, Mitch, Kenny and Mickey, and this was the group with which Dolph Ziggler first got his foot in the door at WWE.
The group members are former Tag Team Champions, but it seems that this is the only highlight that they managed whilst they were part of the company. The group became the comic relief on the show and when it seemed that there was nothing more that WWE could do with them, DX shipped them back off to OVW when they put them into a box backstage as part of an episode of Monday Night Raw. Kenny Dykstra was able to stick around following the group’s departure, but issues with John Cena forced the group out of the door not long afterwards.
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