Corey Graves is a busy man in WWE right now. Graves is currently part of the three-man announce teams on Raw and Smackdown as well as pay-per-view broadcasts for both shows. Graves recently appeared on the Edge and Christian podcast (one of my favorite podcasts out there) and talked about how busy he was in his career. Here’s a transcript of some of the things Graves said during the show with a thanks to WrestlingInc for it.
Graves on why he prefers announcing on Raw over Smackdown:
“SmackDown, to me, is incredibly fast-paced, which sometimes is fun and other times can be kind of difficult. Three hours versus to two doesn’t seem like it would be that huge of a world of difference, but I mean it absolutely is. Monday, we never struggle for time to tell the stories and you get a lot more two [segment] matches or just plenty of time to do whatever business you need to do. SmackDown, to me, feels more like an infomercial where it’s bam, bam, bam. Here’s this. Here’s that. Plug this. Let’s throw to break. Let’s throw to this package. And you’ve got two rosters that are roughly the same size, so, obviously, everyone needs their airtime to have their stories told. I just feel like SmackDown is so… I don’t want to say ‘rushed’ because it’s just fast.”
“I have more fun on Mondays because I can really help delve into a story or a character with some layers, some depth, because that’s what’s fun to me. I make most of this stuff up. Some guys will come up to me and give me little tidbits here and there, but usually I’ll just go into business for myself and try to make myself laugh.”
Graves discussed what it was like going from announcing on NXT to the main roster with Vince McMahon and others yelling on the headsets.
“Oh, that’s a whole different ballgame! It was a bit of an adjustment because I went from NXT where it was obviously a taped show, so I had my producer in my ear and I heard my partner. That was basically the only two voices I had to worry about. Every once in a while, [Michael] Cole would jump in and say something, but generally it was very easy. You didn’t have to worry about live counts to commercial breaks or anything like that, so fast forward to RAW, now I’ve got Booker, I’ve got Cole, I’ve got Kevin Dunn, I’ve got any number of people sitting in gorilla who have information that they want to pass on to me, and then, we’ve got the wacky 71-year-old billionaire who decides to spew things out when he feels like it, and when he says it, you’d better say it! Yeah, and so, it’s weird. That was the hardest thing because I think on a human level, when you have someone talking in your ear, you stop, you stop talking, and that’s your instinct.”
Graves also had some fan talking about the terminology WWE announcers have to use (per the instructions of Vince McMahon) and how some terms were banned.
“Even though there’s a list of things you’re not supposed to say or you’re not supposed to do, that changes on an hourly basis. Yeah, it happened on back-to-back weeks! We had this edict in a production meeting a couple of weeks ago where, after a backstage pre-tape, there’s a wide shot of the crowd, and just let everything breathe. Don’t talk over it. Don’t react to it. Just kind of let everyone digest what they just saw. Makes sense. That’s perfectly logical. Last night, something happens, there’s a live shot [of the audience]. The three of us [on commentary] shut up. ‘Why didn’t anyone say anything?’ ‘I don’t know. I don’t know. I’m sorry. Clearly, I made up this idea in my head that we weren’t supposed to say anything. I don’t know.'”
Graves, who is a married father of three children (two girls and one boy), recently tweeted about how busy he has been.
Takeover Kickoff, Rumble, Main Event, RAW, Smackdown, MMC & 16 hours of Voiceovers…Finally home. Why would I be able to sleep? 😳
— Corey Graves (@WWEGraves) February 3, 2018
Better to be busy than bored, right? Keep up the good work, Graves.