Who is Corey Graves?
Matthew Polinsky was born on 24 February 1984, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA, and is a columnist, color commentator, and retired professional wrestler, best known for his work with WWE as a color commentator for “SmackDown Live” and “Raw”. He uses the ring name Corey Graves, and is a former NXT Tag Team Champion alongside Adrian Neville. He also wrestled in the independent circuit under the name Sterling James Keenan.
The Net Worth of Corey Graves
How rich is Corey Graves? As of early-2019, sources inform us of a net worth that is over $500,000, earned largely through a successful career with WWE. After the abrupt end of his wrestling career, he smoothly transitioned into commentating, and has remained in that capacity since. As he continues his career, it is expected that his wealth will also continue to increase.
Early Life and Career Beginnings
Corey is the son of an Hungarian couple who settled in Pittsburgh where he was raised. After matriculating from high school, he enrolled at college and graduated with a degree in marketing. He began his wrestling career in the independent circuit in 2000, where he based his name on football player Sterling Sharpe and the member of the band Tool, Maynard James Keenan. He started appearing for various promotions during this period, including Funkin Conservatory where he would win the Tag Team Championship alongside Chris Cage.
He also appeared in the Independent Wrestling Association Mid-South, Cleveland All-Pro Wrestling, and NWA Upstate. In 2002, he won the NWA East Tag Team Championship and later the UIPW Keystone Cruiserweight Championship in the Union of Independent Professional Wrestlers promotion. In 2005 he began working for Far North Wrestling (FNW), and won the FNW Heavyweight Championship at a battle royal match. He also won the Ballpark Brawl Natural Heavyweight Title against Rikishi and Samoa Joe.
International Wrestling Cartel and One Pro Wrestling
While doing a lot of independent circuit work, he was also engaged with IWC, having notable matches with CM Punk and Colt Cabana. He won the IWC Heavyweight Championship, later losing it to Dean Radford. He also attempted to gain the IWC Super Indy Championship from Chris Sabin, but was unsuccessful, then later won the championship in a four-way match after the title was vacated. In 2005, he successful defended the championship against AJ Styles before losing it to Justin Idol. He then unsuccessfully challenged Doe the following year, then lost another match for the championship against Dennis Gregory, actually his final match with the company.
Around the end of his run with IWC, Graves began working with the UK-based 1ProWrestling, with his debut against D’Lo Brown. During his time there, he had a feud with Spud and later won a 10-man elimination tag team match with Spud! He challenged Romeo Roselli for the Nu-Wrestling Evolution Heavyweight Championship but was unsuccessful, and was also unsuccessful at his try for the 1PW Heavyweight Championship, but later won the belt and defended it successfully several times before he lost it to Matin Stone after a 554 day reign.
— Rev. Graves (@WWEGraves) October 21, 2018
Moving to WWE
Prior to signing a formal contract with WWE, Corey began by making several appearances with the company, mostly in dark matches which were not televised. He signed a developmental contract in 2011, and began working in Florida Championship Wrestling (FCW) under the name Corey Graves. He fought against Erick Rowan, and won the Tag Team Championship with Jake Carter. FCW was later rebranded to NXT, and he participated in the inaugural tapings.
In 2013, he had a title match with NXT Champion Seth Rollins, but failed due to the interference from the group The Shield. He transitioned to a feud with the group, and later began feuding with The Wyatt Family and their leader Bray Wyatt. He also teamed up with Kassius Ohno, and later with Adrian Neville, leading them to win the NXT Tag Team Championship which they held for three months before losing to The Ascension. He then had a feud with Neville and suffered two concussions within the next few months, which led him to his absence from television for an extended period.
Transition to Commentating
In 2014, Graves announced that he was officially retiring from in-ring competition due to concussion issues. He joined the NXT commentary team and signed a two year contract, later being added to the pre-show panel for “Raw”, and he began hosting numerous WWE Network original shows. He then became a color commentator for “Raw”, though still providing commentary for NXT, until “NXT Takeover: San Antonio”. In “Raw”, he worked with Byron Saxton and Michael Cole, and joined the commentary team for “205 Live” alongside Mauro Ranallo.
He became involved in some stories with WWE in 2017, particularly revolving around then general manager Kurt Angle, and in a storyline between Big Cass and Enzo Amore. He then joined the team of “SmackDown Live” after JBL left the company, making him the only announcer to work both main brands of the company.
Aside from his work as a commentator, he has also done voice work as a part of the commentary team in video games such as “WWE 2K18” and “WWE 2K19”. He also participated in the documentary “WWE: Behind the Curtain”.
For his personal life, it is known that Corey has been married to Amy Schneider since 2009, and they have three children together. He also has a younger brother named Sam, who is a professional wrestler for the Mexican promotion CMLL under the name Sam Adonis. Corey is also a professional piercer, having completed training through a friend’s tattoo shop, and has worked for several tattoo shops, so he’s also known for his numerous tattoos, including sleeve tattoos on both arms, on his neck, and the words “stay down” tattooed across his knuckles.