3 WWE factions that broke up way too soon & 3 that went on for too long

The Authority and The Nexus were two important factions in WWE with different outcomes
The Authority and The Nexus were two important factions in WWE with different outcomes
Rohit Nath

Factions have always been important to WWE and wrestling in general. More often than not, factions have been utilized by WWE with the intent of pushing a select few stars individually.

In other cases, the company has used factions to pair up underutilized stars and give them regular TV time. The New Day is the longest-reigning faction in WWE history, going one month shy of six years together.

Even their breakup (which was because of the Draft) proved that every faction has to disband at some point. Here are factions from both sides of the coin:

#3. Broken up too soon by WWE: The Shield

The Shield made an impact in WWE like few before them
The Shield made an impact in WWE like few before them

WWE has often dubbed The Shield as the greatest faction in its history. Many would disagree, but ultimately, it's subjective. What can't be disputed, however, is that few factions in WWE history made the same impact the way they did.

It was on November 18th, 2012 when The Shield made their debut. They instantly had an impact, saving CM Punk's WWE Championship reign. Had they not made an impact, Ryback could have been the WWE Champion.

Bizarre alternate timeline aside, this was the perfect place for The Shield to make their official WWE debut. The trio of Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins, and Dean Ambrose would begin a journey together - one that saw them all reach main event superstardom.

They were dominant throughout their time together, with all of them having different but important roles. While together, they had a long undefeated streak for months, held Championships, and set records.

Reigns, in particular, set a Survivor Series elimination record in 2013 and also a Royal Rumble elimination record in 2014. It was no surprise, looking back on it, that he would become the biggest beneficiary of the faction.

After WrestleMania 30 in 2014, WWE decided that it was time for the three men to split and start their journey as singles stars. On a tragic night in June 2014, Seth Rollins would turn his back on Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose, smacking them with steel chairs from behind in what many consider the greatest heel turn in WWE this past decade.

As a whole, The Shield only lasted together for one-and-a-half years together. They had reunions at later stages, but it was clear that they would never have a long-term reunion. By that point, WWE had already begun the process of establishing Reigns as the company's top star, while Rollins was arguably number two in the company at the time.

All three men ended up becoming World Champions, with Dean Ambrose eventually leaving to greener pastures in 2019. As Jon Moxley in AEW, he has had a career rejuvenation. But there's no denying how important The Shield was to his career.

When looking at the current timeline, it may not seem bad that WWE split The Shield when they did. But had they chosen to keep them around for another year or more, they may have had a smoother transition when making Roman Reigns the face of the company.

There could have been more options explored since The Shield only had a couple of months together as babyfaces in 2014.

#3. Went on for too long in WWE: 3MB

WWE's 3MB reunited with Hornswoggle (virtually) to watch the iconic WeeLC match
WWE's 3MB reunited with Hornswoggle (virtually) to watch the iconic WeeLC match

In the grand scheme of things, 3MB's run in WWE wasn't that long. However, considering they had two future WWE Champions, they were kept together for way too long.

The faction started in September 2012 and lasted until both Jinder Mahal and Drew McIntyre were released from WWE. For both these superstars, getting released by the promotion would be the best thing that could happen to them.

Drew McIntyre had already spent five years in WWE by that point, and he went from The Chosen One to a low-card superstar who lost virtually every match. It was a shocking slip down the card, but the redemption story in hindsight makes it all the better.

With Jinder Mahal, he was a few years away from developing a stronger personality as well. It was clear that 3MB was put together by the company with no intention or long-term plan in mind.

The faction shouldn't have existed in the first place, especially given the talent that all men had. Heath Slater still had an enjoyable WWE career where he was a mid or low-card comedy star. Perhaps the company chose the wrong stablemates for him.

#2. Broken up too soon by WWE: The Straight Edge Society

WWE's most hated faction at one point - The Straight Edge Society
WWE's most hated faction at one point - The Straight Edge Society

CM Punk's Straight Edge Society made a huge impact in WWE but lasted less than a year. When looking back on it, their run seems a lot longer, but that perhaps has to do with how impactful it was.

Punk became WWE's most hated heel in 2009 when he constantly trashed Jeff Hardy for his real-life alcohol and drug abuse issues. After beating him in a "Loser leaves WWE" match to retain the World Heavyweight title, it planted the seeds for The Straight Edge Society.

The basis of The Straight Edge Society was promoting the "straight edge" lifestyle that CM Punk followed - no alcohol, no drugs, and no smoking. He "rescued" Festus and with his straight edge ways, turned him into the dominant enforcer Luke Gallows.

He even recruited Serena and Joey Mercury, and the four-person faction became the most entertaining part of WWE television. As a heel, CM Punk got great comeuppance in his feud against Rey Mysterio. He eventually went bald, but Serena's release from WWE put a halt to their run.

Eventually, the faction disbanded when they lost to The Big Show and CM Punk turned on Luke Gallows. He defeated him in a singles match and Gallows would get released by WWE soon after. It was an unfortunate outcome. Punk would go on to have the run of his career a year later, but one can't help but feel that The Straight Edge Society was disbanded too soon.

#2. Went on for too long in WWE: The Cabinet

JBL's WWE Championship reign was protected by The Cabinet
JBL's WWE Championship reign was protected by The Cabinet

Given how impactful The Cabinet was in protecting JBL's WWE title reign in 2004 and 2005, it's surprising how easy it is to forget that they existed. JBL got the biggest push of his WWE career in 2004 when he completely abandoned his APA character in favor of a new gimmick.

The rich and obnoxious Texan gimmick made him the biggest heel in the company and he would go on to dethrone Eddie Guerrero that year. With a lack of options, JBL benefited and had a lengthy reign as WWE Champion.

In that time, he formed The Cabinet comprising of the following members in their roles:

  • President - JBL
  • Chief of Staff - Orlando Jordan
  • Image Consultant - Amy Weber
  • Co-secretaries of Defense - The Basham Brothers
  • Publicist - Jillian Hall

The faction enjoyed a good level of success. Orlando Jordan dethroned John Cena to win the United States title in 2005 while The Basham Brothers also enjoyed a run as the Tag Team Champions on SmackDown while being a part of the faction.

However, they had a run-in WWE that lasted well over a year, with members fluctuating in and out of the faction. With that said, they probably lasted longer than needed. JBL's WWE title loss to John Cena in 2005 should have been the end of the road for them.

#1. Broken up too soon by WWE: The Nexus

Could The Nexus have been one of WWE's greatest factions?
Could The Nexus have been one of WWE's greatest factions?

The Nexus could have become WWE's biggest faction in the past decade. In 2010, they made an impact on WWE television, assaulting John Cena and several others on their debut.

The Nexus was actually a collective group of the original batch of NXT Superstars. This was, of course, when NXT was just a game show and not the company's developmental territory and third brand.

Wade Barrett was the leader of the faction, and the early days showed incredible promise. It took them no time to become the biggest heels on WWE television, and even without Daniel Bryan (who was released after his main roster debut), they were involved with John Cena.

Then Summerslam 2010 happened. The main event featured The Nexus vs. Team WWE, comprising of John Cena, Edge, Chris Jericho, Bret Hart, John Morrison, R-Truth, and the returning Daniel Bryan.

The objective of the match should have been for Barrett to pin Cena, defeating Team WWE and establishing The Nexus as the next big thing in the company. In a bewildering decision, John Cena decided that he was going to win the match for Team WWE, a call that most knew was incorrect.

Justin Gabriel, who was the second last man eliminated, recalled later that all of The Nexus knew that the decision was wrong. But since they were rookies in WWE, they didn't want to be pushy.

Their run would last until early 2011, after which The New Nexus was formed under CM Punk's leadership. By that point, it was far too late. In the eyes of many, The Nexus should have won the pivotal SummerSlam match and had a long run together - potentially establishing Wade Barrett as a main event star and benefiting some of the other members as well.

#1. Went on for too long in WWE: The Authority

The Authority lasted way longer in WWE than required
The Authority lasted way longer in WWE than required

Remember the era in WWE where every single episode of RAW began with a 20-minute promo by Stephanie McMahon and/or Triple H? It was a forgettable era that many felt was painful to watch.

It all began at SummerSlam 2013 when Triple H turned heel by assaulting Daniel Bryan and allowing Randy Orton to successfully cash in the Money in the Bank briefcase. It was a storyline and faction that grew in size, with Seth Rollins being the most important member.

While Rollins' run between June 2014 and November 2015 was incredible, The Authority was largely unbearable. Despite losing a match and getting disbanded by force at Survivor Series 2014, they reunited a month later with John Cena being the only man who could make the call.

The storyline took a long time to conclude, and it may not even have gone down the way it was originally planned. WrestleMania 32's main event was Triple H vs. Roman Reigns for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. Reigns won in an underwhelming match to conclude the Authority storyline that lasted nearly three years.

It was a big relief, and the difference on WWE television was instant. Despite the unpopular Roman Reigns being the focal point of television, 2016 went on to become what many consider the greatest year of the PG Era. While a big change in direction was responsible for this, The Authority getting disbanded proved that they were around a lot longer than they should have been.

Edited by Kaushik Das
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