It was back on July 26 that my esteemed colleague, Keith Harris, brought word that The Shield, the dynamic heel trio consisting of United States Champion Dean Ambrose and Tag Team Champions Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns, was being downplayed on WWE television thanks to backstage heat with Vince McMahon and a few other top stars.
Now, according to a new report from Bryan Alvarez in the latest edition of the Figure Four Weekly Newsletter (subscription required but strongly recommended), the heat with The Shield is still lingering to the point that we can reasonably expect the Wyatt Family to be taking their spot.
The Wyatt Family should be getting a big push soon, likely taking the spot that the Shield has had for a long time. There is still underlying heat on the Shield for reasons talked about in this newsletter in recent weeks (the Undertaker injury that kept him off this show, the big argument backstage with Orton, etc.). Wyatts are considered a HHH project, and with a few of his projects bombing (Sin Cara, Amazing Kong), he's likely going to go hard with this one.
While it's impossible to verify a report like this, the best indicator is what we see on TV each week and there's no questioning the fact that The Shield, who were wrestling and defeating main event talent earlier this year, have been put on the backburner over the past month or so.
That includes not even announcing a match for Rollins and Reigns at SummerSlam, at least not as of this writing. Not only that but -- SPOILER ALERT -- the group does a job for Mark Henry, Big Show and Rob Van Dam on the SmackDown go home show this Friday night. Ambrose, who appears to be collateral damage here, will work the pre-show in a U.S. title match against the aforementioned RVD. If he loses, it's probably safe to assume this is the reason why.
Meanwhile, Bray Wyatt and his family are a hot act with plenty of intrigue and potential. He's working a featured match at SummerSlam, a "Ring of Fire" bout against Kane that could serve as a catalyst to make him look incredibly strong while writing "The Big Red Monster" off TV to go film the See No Evil sequel.
So while The Shield may be getting pushed down the card, at least it seems the Wyatt Family is going to be getting pushed up it.