Corey Graves wants everyone to leave Michael Cole alone.
In the main event of WrestleMania 37, Bianca Belair defeated Sasha Banks to become the new SmackDown Women's Champion. The significance of the match stretched far beyond the belt, however, as they were the first Black women to headline the show and compete in a singles match for the Women's Championship.
Michael Cole has caught flack from fans after he misinterpreted the final moments of the match, believing Sasha Banks kicked out when in fact Bianca had won. Corey Graves corrected him immediately but is now coming to his defence, believing the criticism to be excessive for what was a very real and genuine reaction. On the latest episode of WWE After The Bell, he said the following:
"In the twilight hours after WrestleMania, everybody was mad at our good friend, Michael Cole. Cole's the consummate pro, he's been doing this 25 years. If there's anybody who's truly unshakable, it's Cole. Cole felt bad. He felt terrible, but I can relate. Everybody listening to this that's anxious to find some sort of headline for your internet website, I almost thought the same thing. From our vantage point, it was not crystal clear. Now you factor in, and I'm not making excuses, because it was what it was, to me it didn't take anything away from the amazing moment. It was reality; 'It's over. No, it's not. Oh, yes it is.' It was a genuine, very real reaction. Take into consideration, yes we have the monitor, yes we have audio in our headphones, we're also in a stadium full of twenty-something thousand people and any wrestler's book that you've ever read says, 'Being in a stadium is very different than being in an arena because it takes a second.' The sound has to leave and come back before anybody can truly register, so all of these factors are going in and I myself wasn't sure. Hey, it's the main event of WrestleMania, people have kicked out of each other's finishers 35 times already tonight, why wouldn't this be any different. It just felt like, 'Banks is still..Oh my God!' It was a genuine shock after that so everyone leave Michael Cole alone, okay."
Corey Graves was recently moved from SmackDown to Raw and now sits alongside newly hired play-by-play man, Adnan Virk. Taking Graves' spot next to Cole on Friday Nights is Pat McAfee.
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