“He hasn’t tried to conform” – Paul Heyman praises new WWE SmackDown personality

Paul Heyman believes Pat McAfee has made an impressive start in his new role as a color commentator on WWE SmackDown.

McAfee began working alongside veteran WWE commentator Michael Cole on Friday nights last month. The former NFL star, who is a lifelong WWE fan, competed in two matches in NXT in 2020. He has also previously appeared as a pre-show analyst at NXT TakeOver events.

Speaking on Houston radio station SportsTalk 790, Heyman compared McAfee’s commentary style to that of WWE legends Roddy Piper and Jesse Ventura.

“What I’ve liked about what Pat McAfee has done is that he hasn’t tried to conform into the role of being the stereotypical color commentator, dating back to the days of when Roddy Piper was doing it in Georgia or when Jesse Ventura was doing it with WWE,” Paul Heyman said. “Or when I was color commentator for Jim Ross and b****slapped all of them and showed them how the job is really done. Pat is making it his own gig.”

Pat McAfee revealed on his YouTube channel earlier this month that WWE Chairman Vince McMahon has enjoyed his work so far. Triple H also congratulated McAfee after his commentary debut.

Paul Heyman on Pat McAfee’s commentary style

Pat McAfee previously commentated on an episode of SmackDown in November 2019
Pat McAfee previously commentated on an episode of SmackDown in November 2019

As Roman Reigns’ on-screen special counsel, Paul Heyman has appeared regularly on WWE SmackDown during Pat McAfee’s first six weeks on the show.

Heyman believes McAfee’s love for WWE shines through in his commentary.

“He is as enthusiastic a fan of the product as anyone I’ve ever met, and that permeates the broadcast,” Heyman added. “When you’re watching at home and you hear someone just sitting there saying, ‘Yes, this is really exciting to me, I really enjoy it and can’t wait for the pay-per-view,’ you can smell that from a mile away.”

“But Pat is genuinely excited about being there, about seeing these stars up close, and that comes through on television,” Heyman continued. “As a viewer, it makes you more enthused about the product. So, I love the job that Pat is doing, as long as he continues to acknowledge Roman Reigns.”

Paul Heyman is not the only former WWE color commentator who has praised Pat McAfee. WWE Hall of Famer JBL (John Bradshaw Layfield) said last month that McAfee is “tremendous” and it is “pretty cool” to see him succeed.

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