Wade Barrett's WWE SmackDown Commentary Role Reportedly Permanent

If you were holding your breath waiting for Pat McAfee to come back full-time to the "WWE SmackDown" commentary booth, it's probably the right time for you to come up for air. That is unless you want to suffocate.


According to the latest Wrestling Observer Newsletter, Barrett's spot as "SmackDown" commentator alongside Michael Cole is now permanent. There are no plans for McAfee to return to the gig. In fact, McAfee actually took to social media last night to reveal that any return to WWE is up in the air with all the matters going on in his life, both personally and professionally.

Barrett slotted in for McAfee after the former NFL punter received an offer to serve as an analyst for "College GameDay" on ESPN. Before then, Barrett was a permanent fixture with Vic Joseph behind the "NXT" desk. His promotion up to Friday nights led to Booker T returning to WWE commentary once again, filling Barrett's vacancy for the developmental brand. Those were just a couple of the changes installed as part of an overall commentator shake-up back in October across all of WWE's weekly programming.


McAfee did make a surprise return to the commentary headset in January, joining Cole and Corey Graves to call the action at the Royal Rumble — a move that neither of his broadcast partners was aware of. And future pop-ins aren't necessarily out of the question. However, the full-fledged return that McAfee envisioned once the college football season came to a close is no longer on the table.