There was a big change to the presentation of WWE SmackDown as two veterans were put into new roles.
The February 2nd edition of WWE Smackdown is getting a lot of attention due to the company deciding to go in the direction of Roman Reigns and The Rock at WrestleMania 40 while Cody Rhodes steps aside, but there was also a broadcasting change on the show as well.
In late January, WWE decided to release announcer Kevin Patrick. After joining WWE in 2020 and serving as a backstage interviewer, WWE tried Patrick as the lead announcer of both Raw and Smackdown. The company felt like it just wasn’t working out, so they released Patrick.
That led to the new commentary team of Corey Graves & Wade Barrett debuting this past week on Smackdown. Graves has been bounced around between Raw & Smackdown a lot over the last decade. As for Barrett, he was most recently on Raw with Michael Cole, but is now back on Smackdown where he was promoted to after he was on NXT for a couple of years.
What’s new about the Graves & Barrett team is that rather than being an analyst like he has been, Graves is now the lead announcer meaning he has to call the action the way that Michael Cole does. Barrett is still in the analyst role, which he does very well.
What Did WWE’s Corey Graves And Wade Barrett Say About Their New Roles?
Both men commented on their new roles on X/Twitter. Corey Graves wrote:
I haven’t been that nervous in years. A new role. A new mountain. A new challenge.
There will be bumps in the road. There is plenty of room for improvement. But, as a lifelong fan, it is an honor. I will do my best to do right by you. #SmackDown
Wade Barrett had a bit of a sarcastic question when he reacted to a picture of the duo.
The Savior of Misbehavior & The King of Bad News together on Friday nights.. What could possibly go wrong?!? #SmackDown
The WWE Chief Content Officier Paul “Triple H” Levesque praised the duo on Twitter/X as well.
— Triple H (@TripleH) February 3, 2024