WWE announced moments ago that Corey Graves will be replacing JBL on commentary for SmackDown Live. Graves will take Layfield’s place in on the commentary team beginning tomorrow night, joining Byron Saxton and Tom Phillips on Tuesday nights.
He will not, however, continue to be a commentator on Main Event and 205 Live. Nigel McGuinness, who is currently a commentator on NXT, will be taking Graves’ place on both Main Event and 205 Live beginning this week.
— WWE (@WWE) September 4, 2017
Graves will be pulling double duty on Monday and Tuesday nights as he revealed that he will be staying with WWE’s flagship show along with working with the SmackDown Live team.
Hey @ShinsukeN, get that knee ready!
— Corey Graves (@WWEGraves) September 4, 2017
As we reported this weekend, JBL stepped down from his commentary position on SmackDown Live, but he will still be involved in the company, making occasional appearances for WWE on shows like WrestleMania and Tribute To The Troops. He will now be focusing his time and attention on his Beyond Sport Global Ambassador role.
Depending on what source you trust, the back story behind JBL’s departure ranges from waiting until the Mauro Ranallo/bullying situation cooled off to JBL deciding to not re-sign with the company under his latest contract terms to Vince McMahon asking him to stay.