HOUSTON — Five years after The Shield’s debut, Raw Superstars Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins & Dean Ambrose proved that they’re still the most dominant trio in WWE, defeating SmackDown LIVE’s The New Day in the opening match of Survivor Series 2017.
A sold-out crowd packed inside Houston’s Toyota Center witnessed a dream match that set the visceral tone for the rest of the night’s head-to-head battles for brand supremacy. In the early goings, it was Ambrose — a Superstar more than accustomed to absorbing massive amounts of bodily harm — who sustained the most damage as Xavier Woods, Kofi Kingston & Big E isolated The Lunatic Fringe and hit him with two successive Unicorn Stampedes and a massive Big E spear through the ropes and to the floor. However, neither Ambrose nor his Shield brothers would stand down in defense of the red brand.
Faced with an unrelenting trio of foes, The New Day was forced to get even more creative than usual. As Ambrose lay supine on the canvas — once again separated from his then-incapacitated Shield brothers — Kingston climbed to the top rope, Woods hoisted E onto his shoulders, helping The Dreadlocked Dynamo leapfrog over his New Day allies for a punishing splash onto Ambrose. For good measure, Big E leapt onto The Lunatic Fringe himself, crushing Ambrose’s ribs with his 285-pound frame.
When an exhausted Rollins attempted to intervene, E scooped up Rollins and Ambrose, hitting the former Raw Tag Team Champions with a double Midnight Hour that seemed to seal the victory for The New Day and SmackDown LIVE. Enter: The Big Dog.
Returning to the fray after being laid out at ringside, Reigns hit Big E with a thunderous Spear that made landfall on top of the pin attempt, breaking the count. A brawl between both frustrated factions ensued, and a Spear to Kingston led many to believe that The Shield’s signature Triple Powerbomb was on the horizon. Reigns, however, had other ideas, going up to the middle rope instead of getting into his usual position for the move. Ambrose and Rollins got the message, and the reunited Hounds of Justice ended the dream match in nightmarish fashion for Kingston, who suffered an impressive (and impactful) Super Triple Powerbomb. Ambrose scored the pinfall over Kingston, and Raw stood triumphant.
After weeks of sieges and psychological warfare, it was The Shield who scored Raw’s first victory over SmackDown LIVE at Survivor Series. Believe that.