Finding a time-related, wrestling-related picture is a lot more difficult than you would think.
With three main event matches poised to take up the bulk of the broadcast, the distribution of the remaining time throughout the rest of the card will dictate the quality of those matches and the show as a whole.
One of the prime examples of an event's quality being adversely affected by the lack of time available to the undercard matches is the 2001 King of the Ring.
That year's show featured Superstars such as Edge, Christian, Rhyno, Jeff Hardy, Kane and The Dudley Boyz in matches that had potential to be very good, if not great. Unfortunately, four of the five show's undercard bouts were given less than 10 minutes, and none of them really lived up to expectations.
The two main events on that show—Kurt Angle vs. Shane McMahon in a Street Fight and Chris Benoit vs. Chris Jericho vs. Steve Austin for the WWE title in a Triple Threat match—were outstanding matches that saved the show from mediocrity. Still, one could not help but be disappointed, as what could have been an all-time great show instead was simply really good.
On the other hand, No Way Out 2001 was one of the best pay-per-view events in company history, and the longest undercard match on that card clocked in at just over 12 minutes. That show featured main events featuring Kurt Angle defending the WWE title against The Rock and Stone Cold Steve Austin clashing with Triple H in a Three Stages of Hell match.
Rather than bowing to those two marquee matchups, every match on the undercard sought to steal the show.
An undercard that lacks time to develop matches and tell stories will not necessarily destroy the quality of a show, especially if the main events deliver. However, if those main events do not deliver or if a Superstar or two has an off night and the bouts leave fans dissatisfied, the lack of a really strong supporting match can doom the entire show.
The Superstars who maximize what they do, in the amount of time they are given to do it in, are the ones who will reap the rewards for their contributions. Those who let a lack of time limit them, however, will earn the doubt the company has about their capabilities.
The time and the performers' ability to use every second given to them to deliver an above-average match go hand-in-hand.
It should be interesting to see which Superstars step up and which melt under the pressure at Hell in a Cell.