Report: WWE Changing Up Broadcast Teams For Raw, SmackDown, NXT

Notable changes are coming

WWE will be changing up their television broadcast teams beginning this weekend, according to an exclusive report from Variety.

Beginning with Friday's "season premiere" edition of SmackDown, the teams will change into the following duos:

SmackDown will be helmed by Michael Cole and Wade Barrett. Barrett moves over from NXT, where he had acted as commentator since the summer of 2020. They will be joined by Samantha Irvin on ring announcing, and Kayla Braxton and Megan Morant as backstage interviewers.

Over on Raw, the new team will be Kevin Patrick and Corey Graves, with Mike Rome as ring announcer. Interviews will be done by Byron Saxton and a returning Cathy Kelley, who left WWE in 2020.

NXT's new team will be Vic Joseph and Booker T, with Alicia Taylor as ring announcer, and McKenzie Mitchell as backstage interviewer.

Cole and Graves are tabbed as the commentary team for pay-per-views.

SmackDown announcer Pat McAfee is presently taking a leave of absence from WWE to serve as analyst on ESPN's College GameDay on Saturday mornings. He is expected to return to WWE at the conclusion of the season.

UPDATE: Raw announcer Jimmy Smith revealed on Twitter that he's parting ways with WWE, writing, "Just wanted to say, now that the story is officially out, that my time with the WWE is officially done. Had a lot of fun and met some great people. Really and truly blown away by the acceptance from the WWE fans! You folks make it work every week and your enthusiasm was amazing!"

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Justin Henry

Written by Justin Henry

In addition to writing lists and commentaries for Cultaholic, Justin is also a features writer and interviewer for Fighting Spirit Magazine, and is co-author of the WWE-related book Titan Screwed: Lost Smiles, Stunners, and Screwjobs.