After his team’s loss at TakeOver WarGames earlier this month, Pat McAfee hasn’t been on NXT.
That seemed perfectly reasonable. Wrestling is not his full-time gig, and that was a reasonable stopping point for at least that chapter of his story. McAfee remained a total pro, selling his injuries and putting over the other men in the match with him from his full-time gig on The Pat McAfee Show.
An item from last week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter about Pat Mac’s status got picked up by every outlet on the wrestle web (including by our Randall Ortman). It indicated that WWE made the call to take McAfee off television, and that he could be off until the spring. The former NFL All-Pro took screenshots of a bunch of the headlines and tweeted this:
I think I got fired on Christmas. pic.twitter.com/FOTP1A1qTH— Pat McAfee (@PatMcAfeeShow) December 26, 2020
Nothing in Dave Meltzer’s report said anything about a “firing”, and McAfee is a heel who’s railed against NXT management, so it makes sense he would overreact.
But he also has a track record of getting angry about real and perceived slights, which takes me from being 100% sure this is a work to 99% sure it is. Pat referenced it again on his show today (Dec. 28), when a listener tweeted in to their Monday #PatIDontWantToOverreactBUT segment with this:
It prompted an entertaining rant about how Pat wasn’t using his regular spray tan machine in Orlando, one of the “rookie mistakes” on which he blames his 0 - 2 NXT record. That promo closed with, “Maybe everything that guy [tweeter Benny Butz] is saying is close to accurate, but that doesn’t mean I should have to read on the internet all day Christmas that NXT has just written me off of television for the rest of my life. Hey fuck you, Benny Butz.”
Again, this is likely just a way to incorporate Meltzer’s report into a storyline to explain McAfee’s next heelish, anti-NXT action. But since his work on the black-and-gold brand has been among my favorite things in wrestling this year (and has drawn praise from the likes of CM Punk and Stone Cold Steve Austin), I get worried things could actually break down between the two parties and deprive us of more of Pat’s “mouf” on Wednesday nights.
Which is probably something McAfee knows, so he decided to work the rumor into kayfabe. Unless I’m convincing myself he’s working us and ignoring a potential real issue?
Welp, there’s only one way to sign this post off now.