Corey Graves has become one of the most recognizable voices in WWE, despite once being confident he was going to lose his job at Christmas.
After his in-ring career ended due to injuries, Graves transitioned into a commentary role and has called the action on RAW, SmackDown, and WWE NXT.
Appearing on the “Kurt Angle Show” Graves recalled Michael Cole using a line the Chairman didn’t like, which Graves feared he would be blamed for. He said,
“The first time I ever got ‘Vince’d,’ it was Chicago, Christmas night, we did Monday Night Raw live. This was probably four or five years ago. The Raw commentary desk was on top of the stage by the entranceway, and we would stand up and turn around and do these reverse on-cameras so that the ring and the crowd were in the back. It was a cool setup.
“Michael Cole and I were discussing beforehand. He said, ‘I’m going to do Welcome To Monday Night Raw. Happy Holidays, everybody. You can say Merry Christmas, here’s what we have on tap.’ Okay, great, we’ll throw into some graphics. Cole goes, ‘Welcome everyone to Monday Night Raw. Happy Holidays, everybody!’
“With the speed of lightning, the boss was on the all-call button, which means everybody listening can hear. ‘I SAID MERRY CHRISTMAS! NOT HAPPY HOLIDAYS!’ Meanwhile, I’m going, ‘I was gonna say….’ I’m getting yelled at on camera. I’m like a deer in headlights. I’m going, this is it, I’m getting fired on Christmas night. Of course, we get done, he comes on and goes, ‘Aha, that was good. Thanks guys.’ I was terrified. My heart skips a few beats.”
Graves is currently a commentator for SmackDown alongside Cole & Kevin Patrick and was quietly cleared to wrestle in 2020, but only informed fans in 2022.
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Corey Graves, a former professional wrestler turned commentator, has become a prominent figure in WWE. Despite his success, Graves once feared losing his job during a live broadcast on Christmas night.
After retiring from in-ring competition due to injuries, Graves transitioned into a commentary role and has provided commentary for RAW, SmackDown, and WWE NXT. During an appearance on the “Kurt Angle Show,” Graves recounted a nerve-wracking experience involving WWE Chairman Vince McMahon.
Graves recalled a moment when his colleague Michael Cole used a line that McMahon didn’t approve of during a live broadcast. Graves feared that he would be blamed for it and potentially lose his job. The incident took place in Chicago during a Monday Night RAW episode.
The commentary desk was positioned on top of the stage by the entranceway, allowing the commentators to face the crowd and the ring during reverse on-camera shots. Before the show, Cole informed Graves that he would say, “Welcome to Monday Night RAW. Happy Holidays, everybody,” and Graves would follow up with additional information.
However, when Cole went live on air, he said, “Welcome everyone to Monday Night RAW. Happy Holidays, everybody!” McMahon quickly reacted and used the all-call button, which allows everyone listening to hear his message. McMahon shouted, “I SAID MERRY CHRISTMAS! NOT HAPPY HOLIDAYS!”
Graves was caught off guard and feared the consequences of the mistake. He was getting yelled at on camera and thought he would be fired on Christmas night. However, once the broadcast ended, McMahon casually thanked them and expressed his satisfaction with their performance. Graves was relieved and grateful that he didn’t lose his job.
Currently, Graves serves as a commentator for SmackDown alongside Cole and Kevin Patrick. In 2020, he was quietly cleared to wrestle again but only revealed this information to fans in 2022.
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In conclusion, Corey Graves’ journey from a professional wrestler to a successful commentator in WWE has been filled with memorable moments. Despite his initial fears of losing his job, Graves has established himself as one of the most recognizable voices in the industry.