Seth Rollins, Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose debuted as The Shield at the WWE Survivor Series pay-per-view in November 2012.
However, speaking on Edge and Christian’s podcast, Rollins has revealed that the trio were originally supposed to debut one month earlier at Hell In A Cell.
WWE planned to call up “The Hounds of Justice” to work alongside CM Punk, so when they were asked to show up to the PPV, Rollins assumed that they would be part of the main event between Punk and Ryback.
But, as the 2019 Royal Rumble winner recalled, WWE went in a different direction by having Brad Maddox work as a crooked referee to help Punk retain his WWE Championship:
“We were supposed to debut at Hell In A Cell, the month before Survivor Series, so we were all at the pay-per-view excited, didn’t really know what was going on, nobody was really talking to us. We were there, we were ready to do something but we didn’t know what was going to happen or anything like that. No-one approached us all day and then Brad Maddox, the bad referee, the heel referee at that pay-per-view… I remember we were all just kind of like, ‘Why the hell? Why are we here? What’s going on?’ … Then the next Monday, Tuesday, we’re back in Tampa doing man-in-the-middle drills on a Tuesday afternoon, just like depressed as all hell like, ‘I thought this was gonna be it.'”
One month later, the three Shield members made their mark when they attacked Ryback on their debut in the main event of Survivor Series.