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WWE PPV Timing: 2014 Year In Review

How much bell-to-bell action do you actually get when you watch a WWE Pay-Per-View? And how much time did you spend watching commercials for Diet Dew?

In 2014, WWE's 12 Pay-Per-View (PPV) events lasted for a total of 35 hours 26 minutes and 57 seconds (35h 26m 57s). Here is the full list of how long each individual event ranked in total show time:

5 of these 12 events ended within 5 minutes of the full allotted time slot of 3 hours (or 4 hours, for WrestleMania 30).  This is a remarkable feat considering that none of 2013's 12 PPV events went that close to the edge.

WWE aired 35h 26m 57s of total show time out of a potential 37h 00m 00s. This means that there was about 1h 33m 03s of unused time that could have theoretically been filled with content. When you divide that dead time across the 12 PPV events, it results in an average dead time of 7m 45s per show.

So on average, the final hour of a 2014 WWE PPV ended at the 52m 15s mark.  This is an improvement over 2013 by 1m 06s per show.  Overall, WWE included 13m 11s of additional content on 2014 PPVs compared to 2013.

Match Times

The bell-to-bell time of the 86 total matches took up 19h 00m 30s, which is about 53.6% of the total show time. Here is where every individual event ranked in this category:

  • 61.7%: TLC (1h 46m 04s)
  • 60.8%: Royal Rumble (1h 39m 39s)
  • 56.8%: Extreme Rules (1h 33m 12s)
  • 56.4%: Elimination Chamber (1h 38m 08s)
  • 53.6%: Payback (1h 34m 56s)
  • 52.5%: Money In The Bank (1h 32m 21s)
  • 51.8%: SummerSlam (1h 29m 01s)
  • 51.6%: Hell In A Cell (1h 31m 01s)
  • 51.0%: WrestleMania 30 (2h 00m 09s)
  • 50.3%: Survivor Series (1h 30m 05s)
  • 50.0%: Night Of Champions (1h 23m 22s)
  • 48.3%: Battleground (1h 22m 32s)

WrestleMania 30 just barely surpassed 2h 00m 00s in overall match time, which is something that doesn't often happen on the four hour extravaganza.

7 of the 11 three-hour shows included between 90 to 100 minutes of match time.  Two of the three events that fell below this mark (Battleground, Night of Champions) essentially swapped out Seth Rollins match time for angles involving Dean Ambrose.

The TLC match time of 1h 46m 04s is the highest number that I have recorded for a three-hour PPV since I started tracking this data in 2013.

The average match time for all 86 matches was 13m 16s. You can click here to see a full list of every individual match time. Pre-show matches are not included in this set.

Pre-Match Segments

Pre-match segments took up the next biggest chunk of time. These segments include things like wrestler entrances, ring introductions, promos or brawls that take place right before a match is about to begin, video recaps explaining the story of the match, and so forth.

The 12 PPV events included a total of 8h 06m 59s of pre-match segment time, which is about 22.9% of the total show time. Here is where every individual event ranked in this category:

  • 28.0%: Hell In A Cell (49m 17s)
  • 27.3%: Night Of Champions (45m 27s)
  • 26.1%: SummerSlam (44m 52s)
  • 24.9%: Battleground (42m 32s)
  • 24.4%: Extreme Rules (40m 05s)
  • 24.4%: Elimination Chamber (42m 20s)
  • 22.0%: WrestleMania 30 (51m 52s)
  • 21.8%: Money In The Bank (38m 25s)
  • 21.5%: Payback (38m 03s)
  • 19.2%: TLC (33m 06s)
  • 18.6%: Survivor Series (33m 25s)
  • 16.8%: Royal Rumble (27m 35s)

9 out of the 11 three-hour shows ended up with 33 to 46 minutes of pre-match segment time.

The score for Hell In A Cell is high because the brawl on top of the cage between Ambrose and Rollins technically occurred before the bell rang, and so it was part of the pre-match segment rather than the actual match time.

For the second year in row, the Royal Rumble was the only PPV with under 30 minutes of pre-match segment time.  This is largely due to the fact that the Royal Rumble has fewer pre-match superstar entrances than all other shows.

Every single second of pre-match segment time is linked to exactly 1 of the 86 matches. The average pre-match segment time for a match was 5m 40s and the median time was 4m 34s.

Here is the full list of pre-match segment time for all 86 matches:

  1. 19m 40s: Ambrose vs Rollins (Hell In A Cell)
  2. 15m 05s: Undertaker vs Lesnar (WrestleMania 30)
  3. 14m 17s: Elimination Chamber match (Elimination Chamber)
  4. 14m 11s: Team Cena vs Team Authority (Survivor Series)
  5. 12m 01s: Bryan vs Triple H (WrestleMania 30)
  6. 11m 58s: 8-Man WWE WHC Ladder Match (Money In The Bank)
  7. 11m 25s: Lesnar vs Cena (Night Of Champions)
  8. 10m 33s: Cena vs Wyatt (WrestleMania 30)
  9. 10m 12s: Cena vs Orton vs Reigns vs Kane (Battleground)
  10. 9m 38s: Orton vs Cena (Royal Rumble)
  11. 9m 34s: Cena vs Wyatt (Extreme Rules)
  12. 9m 33s: Cena vs Wyatt (Payback)
  13. 9m 23s: The Shield vs Evolution (Extreme Rules)
  14. 9m 12s: Orton vs Batista vs Bryan (WrestleMania 30)
  15. 9m 06s: The Shield vs The Wyatt Family (Elimination Chamber)
  16. 8m 56s: Cena vs Lesnar (SummerSlam)
  17. 8m 36s: Cena vs Orton (Hell In A Cell)
  18. 8m 13s: Cena vs Rollins (TLC)
  19. 8m 07s: Jericho vs Wyatt (Battleground)
  20. 7m 45s: Rusev vs Swagger (Battleground)
  21. 7m 27s: The Shield vs Evolution (Payback)
  22. 7m 22s: Big Show vs Rusev (Hell In A Cell)
  23. 7m 13s: Paige vs AJ vs Nikki (Night Of Champions)
  24. 7m 12s: MITB Contract Ladder Match (Money In The Bank)
  25. 7m 03s: Ambrose vs Wyatt (TLC)
  26. 6m 55s: Battleground Battle Royal (Battleground)
  27. 6m 54s: Rusev vs Swagger (SummerSlam)
  28. 6m 43s: Royal Rumble match (Royal Rumble)
  29. 6m 18s: Del Rio vs Batista (Elimination Chamber)
  30. 6m 18s: Lesnar vs Big Show (Royal Rumble)
  31. 6m 17s: Stephanie vs Brie (SummerSlam)
  32. 6m 11s: Bryan vs Kane (Extreme Rules)
  33. 6m 06s: Jericho vs Wyatt (SummerSlam)
  34. 5m 49s: Ambrose vs Rollins (SummerSlam)
  35. 5m 45s: Ambrose vs Wyatt (Survivor Series)
  36. 5m 29s: Henry vs Rusev (Night Of Champions)
  37. 5m 23s: Sheamus vs Cesaro (Payback)
  38. 5m 11s: Ziggler vs The Miz (Night Of Champions)
  39. 5m 04s: RVD vs Cesaro vs Swagger (Extreme Rules)
  40. 4m 56s: Bryan vs Wyatt (Royal Rumble)
  41. 4m 51s: Tag Team Fatal 4-Way Match (Survivor Series)
  42. 4m 38s: Rusev vs Big E (Money In The Bank)
  43. 4m 37s: Rollins vs Reigns (Night Of Champions)
  44. 4m 30s: Rusev vs Big E (Payback)
  45. 4m 19s: Jericho vs Orton (Night Of Champions)
  46. 4m 19s: Rusev vs Truth and Woods (Extreme Rules)
  47. 4m 13s: The Usos vs Gold and Stardust (Night Of Champions)
  48. 3m 48s: The Usos vs Harper and Rowan (Money In The Bank)
  49. 3m 48s: Harper vs Ziggler (TLC)
  50. 3m 47s: The Miz vs Ziggler (SummerSlam)
  51. 3m 46s: Orton vs Reigns (SummerSlam)
  52. 3m 46s: Big E vs Swagger (Elimination Chamber)
  53. 3m 42s: AJ vs Nikki (Survivor Series)
  54. 3m 39s: The Usos vs Gold and Stardust (Hell In A Cell)
  55. 3m 33s: Barrett vs RVD (Payback)
  56. 3m 30s: New Age Outlaws vs The Usos (Elimination Chamber)
  57. 3m 26s: Nikki vs AJ (TLC)
  58. 3m 24s: The Usos vs Harper and Rowan (Battleground)
  59. 3m 18s: The Miz and Mizdow vs The Usos (TLC)
  60. 3m 17s: AJ vs Paige (SummerSlam)
  61. 3m 09s: AJ vs Cameron (Elimination Chamber)
  62. 3m 07s: AJ vs Paige (Battleground)
  63. 3m 06s: Sheamus vs The Miz (Hell In A Cell)
  64. 3m 04s: Rybaxel vs Gold and Stardust (Money In The Bank)
  65. 3m 04s: Big E vs Barrett (Extreme Rules)
  66. 3m 02s: Rollins vs Ambrose (Battleground)
  67. 3m 00s: Sheamus vs Cesaro (Night Of Champions)
  68. 2m 56s: Divas Survivor Series Elimination Tag Team Match (Survivor Series)
  69. 2m 54s: Paige vs Alicia Fox (Payback)
  70. 2m 51s: Paul Revere vs Adam Rose (Money In The Bank)
  71. 2m 49s: Big Show vs Rowan (TLC)
  72. 2m 48s: Paige vs Naomi (Money In The Bank)
  73. 2m 40s: Dallas vs Kingston (Payback)
  74. 2m 30s: Paige vs Tamina (Extreme Rules)
  75. 2m 28s: Ziggler vs Cesaro (Hell In A Cell)
  76. 2m 26s: Rusev vs Swagger (TLC)
  77. 2m 22s: Nikki vs Brie (Hell In A Cell)
  78. 2m 16s: The Shield vs New Age Outlaws and Kane (WrestleMania 30)
  79. 2m 14s: Titus O'Neil vs Darren Young (Elimination Chamber)
  80. 2m 06s: Summer Rae vs Layla (Money In The Bank)
  81. 2m 04s: AJ vs Paige (Hell In A Cell)
  82. 2m 03s: Rybaxel vs Cody and Goldust (Payback)
  83. 2m 03s: Kane vs Ryback (TLC)
  84. 2m 00s: Rose and The Bunny vs Slater and The Gator (Survivor Series)
  85. 1m 25s: Vickie Guerrero Divas Championship Invitational (WrestleMania 30)
  86. 1m 20s: Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal (WrestleMania 30)

John Cena wrestled in 12 of these 86 matches, and his 12 matches all appear within the top 18 entries on this list, including 9 of the top 12 slots.  Just about every John Cena match is guaranteed to have that dramatic video package to hype up his bout, which always adds multiple minutes to the pre-match segment clock.

Speaking of those dedicated video packages, 26 of these 86 matches were awarded that special treatment.  Those 26 pre-match video packages took up 1h 26m 03s of all PPV time in 2014.

There were also two more of these video packages that didn't end up in a pre-match segment, including a video package to hype up the segment at Payback where Brie slapped Stephanie in the face and quit.  These two video packages ended up in the Miscellaneous category, and they would add about 7m 05s to the total amount of PPV time spent on these dedicated video packages in 2014.

Wrestler entrances are the largest components of most pre-match segments.  These pre-match entrances took up a total time of  4h 31m 30s.  That means that roughly 55.8% of all pre-match segment time came from superstar entrances.  It also means that at least 12.8% of all PPV time in 2014 included a wrestler making his or her entrance.

The actual percentage is a little bit higher due to several entrances that took place outside of pre-match segments.  An example of this would be the entrances for Rock, Austin, and Hogan at WrestleMania 30.  The times for these entrances are not accounted for with the numbers above because those entrances were not part of any pre-match segment.  These types of entrances usually end in the Miscellaneous category.  An additional 17 to 18 minutes of superstar entrance time can be added on here to account for these entrances that were not part of any pre-match segments.  This could raise the percentage of 2014 PPV time spent on all superstar entrances up to 13.6%.

Here is the full list of pre-match entrance time that each superstar accumulated in 2014:

  1. 20m 42s: Randy Orton
  2. 19m 23s: John Cena
  3. 17m 48s: Bray Wyatt
  4. 15m 32s: Seth Rollins
  5. 11m 40s: Rusev
  6. 10m 26s: Triple H
  7. 10m 22s: Dean Ambrose
  8. 10m 04s: Paige
  9. 9m 22s: Jimmy Uso
  10. 9m 22s: Jey Uso
  11. 8m 59s: Batista
  12. 8m 14s: Roman Reigns
  13. 7m 49s: Daniel Bryan
  14. 7m 47s: Cody Rhodes / Stardust
  15. 7m 47s: Goldust
  16. 7m 31s: AJ Lee
  17. 7m 28s: The Miz
  18. 7m 14s: Sheamus
  19. 7m 03s: The Undertaker
  20. 6m 58s: Dolph Ziggler
  21. 6m 51s: Brock Lesnar
  22. 6m 30s: Jack Swagger
  23. 5m 50s: Cesaro
  24. 5m 39s: Luke Harper
  25. 5m 34s: Chris Jericho
  26. 5m 33s: Erick Rowan
  27. 5m 33s: Big Show
  28. 5m 22s: Nikki Bella
  29. 5m 15s: Big E
  30. 4m 24s: Kane
  31. 4m 22s: Ryback
  32. 3m 15s: Damien Mizdow / Paul Revere
  33. 3m 13s: Bad News Barrett
  34. 2m 58s: Stephanie McMahon
  35. 2m 53s: Rob Van Dam
  36. 2m 33s: Curtis Axel
  37. 2m 18s: Alberto Del Rio
  38. 2m 09s: Adam Rose
  39. 1m 59s: Alicia Fox
  40. 1m 44s: Florida Georgia Line
  41. 1m 39s: Mark Henry
  42. 1m 38s: Naomi
  43. 1m 37s: Titus O'Neil
  44. 1m 36s: CM Punk
  45. 1m 27s: Cameron
  46. 1m 24s: Kofi Kingston
  47. 1m 24s: Bo Dallas
  48. 1m 22s: Diego
  49. 1m 19s: Christian
  50. 1m 18s: Brie Bella
  51. 1m 17s: Billy Gunn
  52. 1m 17s: Road Dogg
  53. 1m 16s: The Bunny
  54. 1m 09s: Fernando
  55. 1m 00s: Layla
  56. 0m 59s: Heath Slater
  57. 0m 57s: Lana
  58. 0m 49s: Tamina
  59. 0m 46s: Summer Rae
  60. 0m 46s: Fandango
  61. 0m 34s: Xavier Woods
  62. 0m 33s: Paul Heyman
  63. 0m 32s: R-Truth
  64. 0m 32s: Darren Young
  65. 0m 20s: Natalya
  66. 0m 17s: Emma
  67. 0m 16s: Sin Cara
  68. 0m 13s: The Great Khali
  69. 0m 12s: Zack Ryder

I only credited managers like Lana and Paul Heyman with entrance time when they had their own individual entrances.  So for example, none of Brock Lesnar's entrance time was also awarded to Paul Heyman.  This happened because I did a poor job of tracking managers for most of the year, as I only listed the wrestler's name in my notes during entrances.  Damien Mizdow is another person affected by this decision, because he accompanied Miz to the ring at Night Of Champions.  None of that entrance time was awarded to Mizdow.

Randy Orton sure knows how to milk an entrance with his super slow walk to the ring.  He had 10 entrances this year, and so he averaged more than 2 minutes per entrance.

Undertaker had more entrance time in just one match that all but 18 superstars (including Dolph Ziggler) had for the entire year.

For the vast majority of superstars, the way I time entrances is pretty much from the opening note of the superstar's entrance music to the final note.  In that time WWE often crams in a lot of extra things like quick plugs for sponsors or upcoming shows, as well as Raw recaps.

Those Raw recaps sometimes take up a large portion of entrance times.  So when I say that Paige had 10m 04s of pre-match entrance time for the year, it doesn't necessarily mean that you spent 10m 04s of your life watching her skip to the ring on WWE PPVs in 2014.  That's how long her theme music played in total over her 8 entrances, but WWE cut away to some Raw recaps during part of that time.

These Raw recaps most often pop up during superstar entrances in undercard matches, because the more important matches on the show often get the dramatic treatment of an extended special video package that airs prior to any entrances.  But for undercard matches like all of the divas matches or most tag team matches, WWE usually gets the viewer up to speed on the story by showing a Raw recap right in the middle of someone's entrance.

My rough estimate is that WWE crammed in 27m 18s of these kinds of recap videos during pre-match segments, and most of this time overlapped with superstar entrance times.

Another common interruption in superstar entrances usually occurs in the opening match, as the camera will separately cut to both commentary teams so they can introduce themselves.  This almost always happens while a superstar is making his entrance.  This time is still counted as part of that superstar's entrance time as long as their entrance music is still playing, even though the camera is usually not focused on that superstar while the commentators are introducing themselves.

Post-Match Segments

Post-match segments include things that happen right after a match ends such as celebrations, replays, promos, and angles. The total amount of post-match segment time was 3h 34m 42s, which is about 10.1% of the total show time. Here is where every individual event ranked in this category:

  • 15.9%: Night Of Champions (26m 28s)
  • 11.4%: SummerSlam (19m 32s)
  • 11.1%: Battleground (19m 00s)
  • 11.0%: Royal Rumble (18m 04s)
  • 11.0%: WrestleMania 30 (25m 56s)
  • 10.5%: Survivor Series (18m 46s)
  • 10.3%: Payback (18m 11s)
  • 9.0%: TLC (15m 31s)
  • 8.6%: Hell In A Cell (15m 05s)
  • 8.3%: Money In The Bank (14m 35s)
  • 7.7%: Extreme Rules (12m 41s)
  • 6.3%: Elimination Chamber (10m 53s)

8 of the 12 shows included between 14 to 20 minutes of post-match segment time.

One reason why Night Of Champions ranks so high in this category is because the match between Rollins and Reigns was essentially replaced by a lengthy post-match angle where Dean Ambrose returned via taxi to attack Rollins.

Every single second of post-match segment time is linked to exactly 1 of the 86 matches. The average post-match segment time for a match was 2m 30s and the median time was 2m 01s.

Here is the full list of post-match segment times for all 86 matches:

  1. 9m 37s: Undertaker vs Lesnar 
  2. 7m 57s: Lesnar vs Big Show
  3. 7m 55s: Rollins vs Reigns
  4. 7m 09s: Ambrose vs Wyatt (Survivor Series)
  5. 6m 16s: Team Cena vs Team Authority
  6. 5m 53s: Rollins vs Ambrose (Battleground)
  7. 5m 36s: Orton vs Batista vs Bryan
  8. 5m 24s: Lesnar vs Cena (Night Of Champions)
  9. 5m 10s: Orton vs Cena (Royal Rumble)
  10. 4m 15s: Cena vs Rollins
  11. 4m 10s: Rusev vs Swagger (SummerSlam)
  12. 3m 54s: Bryan vs Triple H
  13. 3m 48s: Stephanie vs Brie
  14. 3m 37s: MITB Contract Ladder Match
  15. 3m 32s: Dallas vs Kingston
  16. 3m 19s: Rusev vs Swagger (Battleground)
  17. 3m 19s: Royal Rumble match
  18. 3m 18s: Cena vs Wyatt (Payback)
  19. 3m 04s: Cena vs Orton (Hell In A Cell)
  20. 2m 56s: Cena vs Lesnar (SummerSlam)
  21. 2m 56s: The Usos vs Harper and Rowan (Battleground)
  22. 2m 54s: Elimination Chamber match
  23. 2m 52s: Harper vs Ziggler
  24. 2m 42s: Sheamus vs Cesaro (Night Of Champions)
  25. 2m 39s: The Shield vs Evolution (Payback)
  26. 2m 37s: Cena vs Wyatt (Extreme Rules)
  27. 2m 26s: Henry vs Rusev
  28. 2m 25s: The Shield vs The Wyatt Family
  29. 2m 25s: Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal
  30. 2m 24s: Ziggler vs Cesaro
  31. 2m 23s: Cena vs Wyatt (WrestleMania 30)
  32. 2m 21s: Rusev vs Truth and Woods
  33. 2m 20s: Rybaxel vs Cody and Goldust (Payback)
  34. 2m 16s: Ambrose vs Wyatt (TLC)
  35. 2m 16s: Ziggler vs Miz (Night Of Champions)
  36. 2m 16s: Paige vs Alicia Fox
  37. 2m 15s: Cena vs Orton vs Reigns vs Kane
  38. 2m 14s: Sheamus vs The Miz (Hell In A Cell)
  39. 2m 12s: Tag Team Fatal 4-Way Match (Survivor Series)
  40. 2m 07s: The Usos vs Gold and Stardust (Night Of Champions)
  41. 2m 05s: 8-Man WWE WHC Ladder Match
  42. 2m 04s: Big Show vs Rusev
  43. 2m 01s: Battleground Battle Royal
  44. 2m 00s: The Shield vs Evolution (Extreme Rules)
  45. 1m 56s: Jericho vs Orton
  46. 1m 55s: Jericho vs Wyatt (SummerSlam)
  47. 1m 51s: Orton vs Reigns
  48. 1m 49s: Del Rio vs Batista
  49. 1m 47s: The Usos vs Harper and Rowan (Money In The Bank)
  50. 1m 42s: Paige vs AJ vs Nikki
  51. 1m 39s: AJ vs Paige (SummerSlam)
  52. 1m 39s: Paul Revere vs Adam Rose
  53. 1m 38s: Ambrose vs Rollins (SummerSlam)
  54. 1m 38s: Bryan vs Wyatt
  55. 1m 38s: Big Show vs Rowan
  56. 1m 37s: Rusev vs Big E (Money In The Bank)
  57. 1m 36s: Ambrose vs Rollins (Hell In A Cell)
  58. 1m 35s: Bryan vs Kane
  59. 1m 35s: The Miz vs Ziggler (SummerSlam)
  60. 1m 33s: Sheamus vs Cesaro (Payback)
  61. 1m 31s: Big E vs Barrett
  62. 1m 29s: Rybaxel vs Gold and Stardust (Money In The Bank)
  63. 1m 28s: RVD vs Cesaro vs Swagger
  64. 1m 25s: Jericho vs Wyatt (Battleground)
  65. 1m 24s: Summer Rae vs Layla
  66. 1m 22s: Rusev vs Swagger (TLC)
  67. 1m 20s: AJ vs Nikki (Survivor Series)
  68. 1m 20s: Nikki vs Brie
  69. 1m 19s: The Miz and Mizdow vs The Usos
  70. 1m 18s: Rusev vs Big E (Payback)
  71. 1m 16s: The Usos vs Gold and Stardust (Hell In A Cell)
  72. 1m 15s: Barrett vs RVD
  73. 1m 15s: AJ vs Cameron
  74. 1m 11s: AJ vs Paige (Battleground)
  75. 1m 09s: Paige vs Tamina
  76. 1m 07s: AJ vs Paige (Hell In A Cell)
  77. 1m 05s: Big E vs Swagger
  78. 1m 05s: The Shield vs New Age Outlaws and Kane
  79. 1m 03s: Nikki vs AJ (TLC)
  80. 0m 59s: New Age Outlaws vs The Usos
  81. 0m 59s: Divas Survivor Series Elimination Tag Team Match
  82. 0m 57s: Paige vs Naomi
  83. 0m 56s: Vickie Guerrero Divas Championship Invitational
  84. 0m 50s: Rose and The Bunny vs Slater and The Gator
  85. 0m 46s: Kane vs Ryback
  86. 0m 26s: Titus O'Neil vs Darren Young

Miscellaneous Segments

Every single second of the show that is not accounted for with pre-match, match, or post-match segment time falls into the Miscellaneous category. This often includes things like advertisements, backstage segments, movie trailers, filler commentary between matches, celebrity sightings, expert panel analysis, hype for the WWE Network, and so forth.

The total amount of miscellaneous segment time was 4h 44m 46s, which is about 13.4% of the total show time. Here is where every individual event ranked in this category:

  • 20.6%: Survivor Series (36m 55s)
  • 17.3%: Money In The Bank (30m 30s)
  • 15.9%: WrestleMania 30 (37m 33s)
  • 15.7%: Battleground (26m 48s)
  • 14.6%: Payback (25m 50s)
  • 12.9%: Elimination Chamber (22m 30s)
  • 11.8%: Hell In A Cell (20m 51s)
  • 11.4%: Royal Rumble (18m 42s)
  • 11.0%: Extreme Rules (18m 03s)
  • 10.7%: SummerSlam (18m 18s)
  • 10.1%: TLC (17m 17s)
  • 6.9%: Night Of Champions (11m 29s)

9 of the 12 events included between 17 to 31 minutes of Miscellaneous segment time.

The two events that included the most Miscellaneous segment time, WrestleMania 30 and Survivor Series, both began with lengthy talking segments in the ring.

Here is a breakdown of what types of segments ended up with the most time in this category:

  • 48m 16s: Backstage interviews or angles
  • 45m 32s: In-ring talking segments and related hype
  • 29m 14s: Opening hype videos for each PPV
  • 21m 03s: Expert panel analysis
  • 15m 55s: Raw, Smackdown, or Pre-show video recaps
  • 15m 36s: Commercials or hype for a future PPV or Raw
  • 10m 37s: Commercials or hype for WWE Network
  • 10m 22s: Opening pyro as Cole welcomes you to the PPV
  • 9m 56s: Some Ambrose/Rollins segments from Battleground
  • 8m 15s: Commercials for WWE products such as WWE 2K15, Total Divas, WWE Shop, etc.
  • 8m 13s: Commercials or hype for WWE Network content like Legends' House
  • 7m 21s: Commercials for sponsors like Diet Dew, Takis Fuego, Kmart, etc.
  • 5m 45s: Filler commentary or introduction of foreign commentary teams
  • 5m 41s: Bad News Barrett promos during Elimination Chamber
  • 4m 49s: Hall of Fame recap video and on-stage segment at WrestleMania 30
  • 4m 34s: Cole talks about the city and/or venue
  • 4m 13s: Superstars play with WWE toys backstage
  • 3m 59s: WWE's "Then, Now, Forever" openings
  • 3m 23s: "By The Numbers" video for the Money In The Bank Ladder match
  • 3m 03s: Hogan's on-stage promo at SummerSlam
  • 2m 49s: Plug for PPV theme songs
  • 2m 42s: Mama's Boy segment from SummerSlam
  • 2m 42s: Roman Reigns interview via satellite
  • 2m 35s: Movie trailers or commercials
  • 2m 15s: Celebrities or wrestlers in the audience, or celebrity tweets
  • 1m 56s: Commercial for Komen Foundation
  • 1m 02s: Ringside interview
  • 0m 50s: Lilian introduces special guests
  • 0m 34s: Bolieve video
  • 0m 33s: Review of tweets exchanged between Fandango and Summer Rae
  • 0m 31s: Commercial for Special Olympics 2014 USA Games
  • 0m 30s: Don't Try This At Home

These numbers only apply for segments that fell in the Miscellaneous category.  For example, when I say that Raw and Smackdown recaps took up 15m 55s of the total Miscellaneous segment time, this is not counting any Raw or Smackdown recaps that took place during superstar entrances as part of their pre-match segment, which I previously estimated to be about 27m 18s.  There is no overlap between those two times.

Similarly, when I claim that 10m 37s of the Miscellaneous segment time was spent hyping WWE Network, this time does not include any of the WWE Network hype that took place during pre-match segments or the matches themselves.

Furthermore some of these Miscellaneous categories listed above could potentially overlap with each other, and so I just picked the one that sounded best for any ambiguous case.  For example, my notes for Hell In A Cell say that there was a 0m 46s spot with "filler commentary insulting people who bought the show on PPV."  I included this time in the "Filler commentary" group in the above list, but upon further consideration perhaps it belongs in the "Commercials or hype for WWE Network" category.

I noticed that WWE wasn't nearly as concerned with telling the viewer to "Don't Try This At Home" on their 2014 PPV events as they were in 2013.  7 different PPVs in 2013 included this brief video warning, but Money In The Bank was the only 2014 PPV that included the same video warning.

PPV Rankings

Here is where every individual PPV ranked in each of the four respective categories: Pre-Match Time, Match Time, Post-Match Time, and Miscellaneous Time. The event that ranks 1st had the highest percentage in the category, and the event that ranked 12th had the lowest percentage in that category.

  • Royal Rumble: 12th, 2nd, 4th, 8th
  • Elimination Chamber: 6th, 4th, 12th, 6th
  • WrestleMania 30: 7th, 9th, 5th, 3rd
  • Extreme Rules: 5th, 3rd, 11th, 9th
  • Payback: 9th, 5th, 7th, 5th
  • Money In The Bank: 8th, 6th, 10th, 2nd
  • Battleground: 4th, 12th, 3rd, 4th
  • SummerSlam: 3rd, 7th, 2nd, 10th
  • Night Of Champions: 2nd, 11th, 1st, 12th
  • Hell In A Cell: 1st, 8th, 9th, 7th
  • Survivor Series: 11th, 10th, 6th, 1st
  • TLC: 10th, 1st, 8th, 11th

Every single show included a top 3 or bottom 3 ranking for at least one of the four categories, except for Payback.

Putting It All Together

For every one of the 86 PPV matches I track 3 individual timing components - Match Time, Pre-match segment time, and Post-match segment time.  I have already listed the rankings of each of these three components individually, so now it is time to put it all together.  Here is the list of how much total show time was allocated for each of the 86 matches when you combine all three components together:

  1. 65m 11s: Royal Rumble match
  2. 63m 34s: Team Cena vs Team Authority
  3. 54m 46s: Elimination Chamber match
  4. 49m 55s: Undertaker vs Lesnar
  5. 41m 54s: Bryan vs Triple H
  6. 41m 03s: The Shield vs Evolution (Payback)
  7. 40m 33s: 8-Man WWE WHC Ladder Match
  8. 38m 09s: Orton vs Batista vs Bryan
  9. 37m 33s: Cena vs Orton (Hell In A Cell)
  10. 37m 08s: Cena vs Wyatt (Payback)
  11. 36m 23s: Ambrose vs Wyatt (TLC)
  12. 35m 44s: Cena vs Orton (Royal Rumble)
  13. 35m 24s: Cena vs Wyatt (WrestleMania 30)
  14. 35m 07s: Ambrose vs Rollins (Hell In A Cell)
  15. 34m 14s: The Shield vs The Wyatt Family
  16. 34m 04s: MITB Contract Ladder Match
  17. 33m 55s: Cena vs Rollins
  18. 33m 23s: Cena vs Wyatt (Extreme Rules)
  19. 31m 16s: The Shield vs Evolution (Extreme Rules)
  20. 30m 59s: Lesnar vs Cena (Night Of Champions)
  21. 30m 42s: Cena vs Orton vs Reigns vs Kane
  22. 30m 15s: Bryan vs Kane
  23. 28m 06s: Bryan vs Wyatt
  24. 27m 58s: Cena vs Lesnar (SummerSlam)
  25. 26m 54s: Ambrose vs Wyatt (Survivor Series)
  26. 24m 33s: Jericho vs Wyatt (Battleground)
  27. 24m 16s: The Usos vs Harper and Rowan (Battleground)
  28. 23m 22s: Harper vs Ziggler
  29. 23m 08s: Battleground Battle Royal
  30. 22m 35s: Jericho vs Orton
  31. 22m 27s: Tag Team Fatal 4-Way Match (Survivor Series)
  32. 21m 54s: Orton vs Reigns
  33. 21m 12s: Stephanie vs Brie
  34. 20m 59s: Rusev vs Swagger (Battleground)
  35. 20m 58s: Jericho vs Wyatt (SummerSlam)
  36. 19m 59s: Rusev vs Swagger (SummerSlam)
  37. 19m 07s: The Usos vs Gold and Stardust (Night Of Champions)
  38. 19m 06s: RVD vs Cesaro vs Swagger
  39. 18m 49s: The Usos vs Harper and Rowan (Money In The Bank)
  40. 18m 48s: Sheamus vs Cesaro (Night Of Champions)
  41. 18m 34s: Sheamus vs Cesaro (Payback)
  42. 18m 19s: Ambrose vs Rollins (SummerSlam)
  43. 18m 18s: Divas Survivor Series Elimination Tag Team Match
  44. 17m 37s: Paige vs AJ vs Nikki
  45. 17m 18s: Big Show vs Rusev
  46. 17m 10s: Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal
  47. 16m 50s: Ziggler vs The Miz (Night Of Champions)
  48. 16m 41s: Big E vs Swagger
  49. 16m 25s: Ziggler vs Cesaro
  50. 16m 17s: Lesnar vs Big Show
  51. 16m 17s: Henry vs Rusev
  52. 15m 41s: Big Show vs Rowan
  53. 15m 16s: Del Rio vs Batista
  54. 15m 15s: The Usos vs Gold and Stardust (Hell In A Cell)
  55. 14m 19s: Barrett vs RVD
  56. 13m 40s: Sheamus vs The Miz (Hell In A Cell)
  57. 13m 34s: Rusev vs Big E (Money In The Bank)
  58. 13m 13s: The Miz vs Ziggler (SummerSlam)
  59. 13m 04s: Rollins vs Reigns
  60. 13m 04s: New Age Outlaws vs The Usos
  61. 12m 40s: Kane vs Ryback
  62. 12m 30s: Big E vs Barrett
  63. 12m 13s: Rybaxel vs Cody and Goldust (Payback)
  64. 12m 08s: Rybaxel vs Gold and Stardust (Money In The Bank)
  65. 12m 08s: Nikki vs AJ (TLC)
  66. 11m 53s: The Miz and Mizdow vs The Usos
  67. 11m 43s: Paige vs Alicia Fox
  68. 11m 31s: AJ vs Paige (Battleground)
  69. 10m 48s: Paige vs Naomi
  70. 10m 04s: Nikki vs Brie
  71. 10m 01s: AJ vs Paige (Hell In A Cell)
  72. 9m 55s: Paige vs Tamina
  73. 9m 52s: AJ vs Paige (SummerSlam)
  74. 9m 33s: Rusev vs Truth and Woods
  75. 9m 26s: Rusev vs Big E (Payback)
  76. 9m 09s: Vickie Guerrero Divas Championship Invitational
  77. 8m 59s: Titus O'Neil vs Darren Young
  78. 8m 55s: Rollins vs Ambrose (Battleground)
  79. 8m 47s: Paul Revere vs Adam Rose
  80. 8m 39s: Rusev vs Swagger (TLC)
  81. 8m 21s: AJ vs Cameron
  82. 6m 44s: Dallas vs Kingston
  83. 6m 38s: Summer Rae vs Layla
  84. 6m 16s: The Shield vs New Age Outlaws and Kane
  85. 5m 37s: AJ vs Nikki (Survivor Series)
  86. 5m 26s: Rose and The Bunny vs Slater and The Gator

The average time here is 21m 25s and the median time is 17m 58s.  This means that half the matches ended up with less than 17m 58s of total show time when you include everything - entrances, match time, celebrations, and so forth.

The only two divas matches that finished above the median time were Stephanie's match at SummerSlam and the 8-diva elimination tag team match at Survivor Series.

There were 15 divas matches in 2014, and 12 of these matches ended up in the bottom 22 slots in terms of total allocated show time.

None of Rusev's singles matches finished above the average time of 21m 25s.

John Cena completely dominates the upper quarter of this list, as every one of his 12 matches rank in the top 24.  It's a rare occurrence when a John Cena match does not end up among the top two matches in total show time for any given PPV.  Though interestingly enough, the one PPV this year where Cena's match did not rank among the top two for total show time was WrestleMania 30, where his match with Bray Wyatt ranked 4th out of 7 total matches.

For every single match I also calculated a number that I call "Match Time Percentage."

Here's a quick example of how this calculation works.  Let's say that a match between Repo Man and Bastion Booger featured 2 minutes of pre-match segment time, 5 minutes of match time, and 3 minutes of post-match segment time.  In this case the "Match Time Percentage" would be 50%.  That's because the three individual components add up to 10 minutes in total, while the match time itself accounted for 5 of those 10 minutes, which is exactly 50%.

With that idea in mind, here is the list of Match Time Percentage for each of these 86 fights:

  1. 84.6%: Royal Rumble match
  2. 78.6%: Divas Survivor Series Elimination Tag Team Match
  3. 78.2%: Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal
  4. 77.8%: Kane vs Ryback
  5. 76.6%: Bryan vs Wyatt
  6. 75.4%: The Shield vs Evolution (Payback)
  7. 74.4%: Ambrose vs Wyatt (TLC)
  8. 74.4%: Orton vs Reigns
  9. 74.3%: Bryan vs Kane
  10. 74.3%: Vickie Guerrero Divas Championship Invitational
  11. 73.9%: The Usos vs Harper and Rowan (Battleground)
  12. 72.3%: Jericho vs Orton
  13. 71.6%: Big Show vs Rowan
  14. 71.5%: Harper vs Ziggler
  15. 70.9%: Big E vs Swagger
  16. 70.4%: Ziggler vs Cesaro
  17. 70.3%: The Usos vs Harper and Rowan (Money In The Bank)
  18. 70.3%: Titus O'Neil vs Darren Young
  19. 69.7%: Sheamus vs Cesaro (Night Of Champions)
  20. 68.9%: Cena vs Orton (Hell In A Cell)
  21. 68.6%: Elimination Chamber match
  22. 68.6%: Tag Team Fatal 4-Way Match (Survivor Series)
  23. 68.2%: MITB Contract Ladder Match
  24. 68.2%: AJ vs Paige (Hell In A Cell)
  25. 67.8%: Team Cena vs Team Authority
  26. 67.8%: The Usos vs Gold and Stardust (Hell In A Cell)
  27. 66.9%: The Usos vs Gold and Stardust (Night Of Champions)
  28. 66.5%: Barrett vs RVD
  29. 66.4%: The Shield vs The Wyatt Family
  30. 65.8%: RVD vs Cesaro vs Swagger
  31. 65.7%: New Age Outlaws vs The Usos
  32. 65.4%: Cena vs Wyatt (Payback)
  33. 65.4%: 8-Man WWE WHC Ladder Match
  34. 65.3%: Paige vs Naomi
  35. 64.1%: Rybaxel vs Cody and Goldust (Payback)
  36. 63.6%: The Shield vs Evolution (Extreme Rules)
  37. 63.5%: Cena vs Wyatt (Extreme Rules)
  38. 63.5%: Cena vs Wyatt (WrestleMania 30)
  39. 63.3%: Big E vs Barrett
  40. 63.2%: Nikki vs Brie
  41. 63.2%: Cena vs Rollins
  42. 63.2%: Paige vs Tamina
  43. 63.0%: Nikki vs AJ (TLC)
  44. 62.7%: AJ vs Paige (Battleground)
  45. 62.7%: Sheamus vs Cesaro (Payback)
  46. 62.5%: Rybaxel vs Gold and Stardust (Money In The Bank)
  47. 62.0%: Bryan vs Triple H
  48. 61.8%: Jericho vs Wyatt (SummerSlam)
  49. 61.4%: Battleground Battle Royal
  50. 61.2%: Orton vs Batista vs Bryan
  51. 61.2%: Jericho vs Wyatt (Battleground)
  52. 61.2%: The Miz and Mizdow vs The Usos
  53. 61.0%: Sheamus vs The Miz (Hell In A Cell)
  54. 59.4%: Cena vs Orton vs Reigns vs Kane
  55. 59.4%: The Miz vs Ziggler (SummerSlam)
  56. 59.3%: Ambrose vs Rollins (SummerSlam)
  57. 58.6%: Orton vs Cena (Royal Rumble)
  58. 57.6%: Cena vs Lesnar (SummerSlam)
  59. 56.1%: Rusev vs Swagger (TLC)
  60. 55.9%: Paige vs Alicia Fox
  61. 55.7%: Ziggler vs The Miz (Night Of Champions)
  62. 53.9%: Rusev vs Big E (Money In The Bank)
  63. 52.4%: Stephanie vs Brie
  64. 52.0%: Ambrose vs Wyatt (Survivor Series)
  65. 51.4%: Henry vs Rusev
  66. 50.5%: Undertaker vs Lesnar
  67. 50.0%: AJ vs Paige (SummerSlam)
  68. 49.4%: Paige vs AJ vs Nikki
  69. 48.8%: Paul Revere vs Adam Rose
  70. 47.9%: Rose and The Bunny vs Slater and The Gator
  71. 47.3%: AJ vs Cameron
  72. 47.3%: Rusev vs Swagger (Battleground)
  73. 47.2%: Summer Rae vs Layla
  74. 46.8%: Del Rio vs Batista
  75. 46.5%: The Shield vs New Age Outlaws and Kane
  76. 45.7%: Lesnar vs Cena (Night Of Champions)
  77. 45.5%: Big Show vs Rusev
  78. 44.6%: Rusev vs Swagger (SummerSlam)
  79. 39.4%: Ambrose vs Rollins (Hell In A Cell)
  80. 38.5%: Rusev vs Big E (Payback)
  81. 30.2%: Rusev vs Truth and Woods
  82. 12.5%: Lesnar vs Big Show
  83. 10.4%: AJ vs Nikki (Survivor Series)
  84. 7.9%: Dallas vs Kingston
  85. 4.1%: Rollins vs Reigns
  86. 0.0%: Rollins vs Ambrose (Battleground)

The bottom 5 matches on the list were clearly more driven by angles than bell-to-bell wrestling, as they all finished with scores well under 20 percent.

Meanwhile in 2013, the only match that scored under 40% in Match Time Percentage (out of 88 total matches) was Randy Orton's MITB cash-in against Daniel Bryan at SummerSlam.

19 of the 86 matches in 2014 ended up below the 50% threshold.  Rusev dominated that portion of the list, as 5 of his matches appeared within these 19 entries.  Only 8 matches in 2013 ended up below the 50% mark.

43 of the 86 matches scored between 55% and 70%.  This is a decrease from 2013, where 53 of the 88 matches fell in that range.

18 of these 86 matches scored above 70%, which is the same number of matches in that range in 2013.

The Match Time Percentage for all 86 matches combined was 61.9%, which is a decrease from 2013's score of 63.3%.

Hourly Breakdown

Here is an hourly breakdown showing how the pre-match, match, post-match, and miscellaneous segment times were scattered across each hour of the show.

I grouped the 37 theoretical PPV hours into 3 distinct types of hours.  There are 12 "Opening Hours", 13 "Middle Hours," and 12 "Final Hours."

The "Opening Hours" are the first 60 minutes of every single PPV.  Every PPV has exactly one of these opening hours.

The "Middle Hours" include the second full hour of every single PPV.  It also includes the third hour of WrestleMania 30.  That's why there are 13 total hours in this group.

"The "Closing Hours" include everything else.  These hours all start at the conclusion of a Middle Hour and terminate whenever the show goes off the air.  None of the twelve "Closing Hours" actually take up a full 60 minutes.  They range anywhere from 44m 00s (Royal Rumble) to 59m 11s (Survivor Series).  These 12 "Closing Hours" actually add up to a total time of 10h 26m 57s.

The "Opening Hours" consisted of 23.5% pre-match segment time, 45.0% match time, 8.4% post-match segment time, and 23.1% miscellaneous segment time.  The full match time for 31 matches took place in these hours.

The "Middle Hours" consisted of 23.0% pre-match segment time, 53.8% match time, 11.9% post-match segment time, and 11.3% miscellaneous segment time.  The full match time for 30 matches took place in these hours.

The "Closing Hours" consisted of 22.1% pre-match segment time, 63.4% match time, 9.7% post-match segment time, and 4.8% miscellaneous segment time. The full match time for 20 matches took place in these hours.

There were 2 additional match times that overlapped between Opening Hours and Middle Hours. There were 3 additional match times that overlapped between Middle Hours and Closing Hours.

Final Results for all 2014 WWE PPVs

Pre-match - 22.9% - 8h 06m 59s

Matches - 53.6% - 19h 00m 30s

Post-match - 10.1% - 3h 34m 42s

Miscellaneous - 13.4% - 4h 44m 46s

For a typical 3-hour WWE PPV, this translates to a show that lasts 2h 52m 15s, with a pre-match segment time of 39m 26s, a bell-to-bell match time of 1h 32m 22s, a post-match segment time of 17m 23s, and 23m 04s remaining for miscellaneous segments.

Payback is probably as close as it gets to this theoretical "average" timed WWE PPV, as it is the only show that fell within 2% of each of these 4 categories. Its respective percentages were 21.5%, 53.6%, 10.3%, and 14.6%.

For those who want to compare years, 2013 included 7h 46m 05s of pre-match segment time (22.0%), 19h 33m 43s of match time (55.5%), 3h 33m 52s of post-match segment time (10.1%), and 4h 20m 06s of miscellaneous segments (12.3%).  So the percentage of match time in 2014 was a little bit lower than in 2013, and that time in 2014 instead went towards pre-match and miscellaneous segments.

So there you have it, Cagesiders. What improvements, if any, do you think WWE can make to their timing of PPV events? Is 92 minutes of bell-to-bell wrestling enough for you on a 3-hour show?  Do you need Michael Cole to spend more time insulting people who continue to buy these shows on PPV?

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