WWE SmackDown commentator Pat McAfee and Raw commentator Corey Graves have discussed having Vince McMahon in their ears on commentary.
The likes of Jim Ross, Mick Foley and CM Punk have all been critical of McMahon’s style of producing the announcers, but McAfee and Graves seem to look at it a bit more positively.
Speaking on the Pat McAfee Show, McAfee said:
“I know from following the business, Vince likes talking to his commentators. He was once a commentator. It’s his show. The commentators are describing the show. They are setting the tone of the show, so he’s very invested in that. I thought to myself, ‘I’m going to get the chance to have a billionaire, one of the greatest minds in the history of entertainment and business, spill his brain through his mouth directly into my ear, I want to be a part of that’. Everybody was like, ‘It’s going to be terrible. You’re going to hate him’. I think I have a respect for Vince McMahon. When he says stuff, I understand the why of what he wants me to say. I feel like that’s a big part of it.”
Graves then added:
“That’s what it is. You’re playing a guessing game trying to think of what he is trying to see, or what he wants to see. You have to remember Pat, we’re basically the last line of defense from what’s going on in his brain, his vision for his company, for his empire that he built. He sees things happening a certain way, and if they’re not happening the way he wants to see them, or, he feels as though something needs to be tweaked or changed, you and me, and Cole and Adnan and Byron are the last defense for him to say, ‘No, make sure they understand this’.
“So, there are a lot of times we will say something, or you’ll hear him tell you something that might not even make sense to you in the moment, but you’re going, ‘Okay, he sees where this is supposed to be going. He knows. I don’t’. We think we do, but that’s why when he comes in, it’s not that he doesn’t trust us. We’re the last panic button for him to go, ‘Pat, say this’. Okay, we saved it. If something goes wrong or awry on the show or in the ring, to be able to think on the fly and pivot and get us back to where we need to go on track. We’re the last line of defense for his vision.”
Pat McAfee has received a lot of praise since debuting on SmackDown commentary alongside Michael Cole, and rightfully so. He brings a great level of energy that was previously missing.
Raw’s current announce team is headed by fellow newcomer Adnan Virk, who was thrown into the deep end without being trained in WWE announcing, flanked by Graves and Byron Saxton.
Quotes via WrestlingNews.co
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