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Ranking the 10 Best NHL Broadcasters Today

Tom Urtz Jr.Contributor IJanuary 13, 2017

Ranking the 10 Best NHL Broadcasters Today

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    The art of broadcasting is something that can't be taught, and announcers like Doc Emrick, Chris Cuthbert, Bob Cole have mastered the art.

    Any Joe Schmo can "announce" a game, but only a select breed have the charisma, intelligence, passion and natural ability to accurately translate the on-ice action for those watching at home.

    These broadcasters have a knack for what they do, and here is one man's opinion on the 10 best current television broadcasters. 

     

Honorable Mention: Sam Rosen, New York Rangers

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    A few years ago Sam Rosen would have been a little higher on this list. While still an amazing broadcaster and announcer, other broadcasters with more of a national profile have surpassed Rosen.

    Alongside Joe Michelletti, Rosen is a veteran with a wealth of hockey knowledge and enthusiasm. He is known for his trademark phrase, "It's a power-play goal," but he didn't get to use it much last season given the calamity that was the New York Rangers power play.

    Rosen is still one of the best in the business, and he will forever be known as the voice of the Rangers, particularly because of this historical call.

     

10. Randy Hahn, San Jose Sharks

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    The San Jose Sharks have a solid broadcast team that got some exposure during the Stanley Cup Playoffs this past season. Most Sharks fans already appreciate the duo of Randy Hahn and Drew Remenda, but it is fair to say that most hockey fans would not be familiar with their work.

    Instead of using an NBC announce team, the CSN Bay Area broadcast of the Sharks' series during the first round was aired on television.

    The series with the Vancouver Canucks was very interesting because of the sweep, and Hahn did a good job providing playoff-quality coverage. There were some hijinks along the way, but it was an entertaining series to watch and listen to.

    Throughout the year he does a great job, and he could have a future in national broadcasting if he ever decided to leave CSN.

     

9. Pat Foley, Chicago Blackhawks

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    Pat Foley has been calling Chicago Blackhawk games since age 26, and he is widely known as the voice of the Blackhawks. He is a member of a broadcasting team with Ed Olczyk.

    Foley has become known for his enthusiasm, hockey knowledge and his ability to bring context to a game.

    He has a unique oratorical delivery. His annunciation of certain phrases is great for delivering excitement and great for all the loyal fans watching at home.

    He has been called homerish at times, but Foley does a great job at framing a game.

     

8. Bob Cole, CBC

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    Bob Cole is a legend who has called many memorable games throughout his career—like the 1972 Summit Series—and he is still a solid announcer today. He is nowhere as good as he used to be, but he still deserves to be on this list.

    At times Cole can get caught up in other elements of the game and for that reason some fans prefer listening to alternate broadcasts if possible. The jury is out on Cole, and a quick Google search of "Bob Cole needs to retire" gives you a plethora of opinions.

    Nonetheless, the man does a great job calling a game, and he brings some insight that younger broadcasters may not have in their arsenal.

     

7. Rick Jeanneret, Buffalo Sabres

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    Some people love Rick Jeanneret, and others can't stand him. However, it is fair to say that more people love than hate the Buffalo Sabres broadcaster because he has been the their lead announcer for decades.

    Like all good things, Jeanneret’s tenure as the voice of the Sabres will come to an end.

    At the end of his current contract, the famed play-by-play announcer will retire from his duties behind the microphone. It will be a sad day for hockey.

    Jeanneret is known for his robust calls, theatrics and exuberance, and most hockey fans will admit that they have taken time to impersonate Mr. Jeanneret. He is a true legend in the industry and one that will be missed when he retires. 

6. Daryl Reaugh, Dallas Stars

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    Daryl Reaugh is a broadcaster for the Dallas Stars, and not many hockey fans have had the pleasure of listening to him call a game. Reaugh is the color man of the Stars, and from time to time his "unique" calls were given national air time because of Mike Ribeiro's wizardry with the puck.

    Most fans have probably seen this clip at least a dozen times, but now you can forever associate this clip with Daryl "Razor" Reaugh. Another great one can be found by clicking here, even though you probably have also already seen it.

    Reaugh is certainly a solid broadcaster and one that doesn't always get the credit he deserves.

5. Rick Peckham, Tampa Bay Lightning

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    Rick Peckham cashes a check calling games for the Tampa Bay Lighting, but he has become a well-known voice during playoff season.

    Peckham is a member of one of NBC's many playoff teams that works during the months of April and May, and he is a knowledgeable announcer that knows how to get a crowd going.

    He was in the stages of closing out his night of duty during this clip, and he was able to bring the atmosphere from the arena into the homes of millions watching once Daniel Alfredsson tied the game at 1-1.

     

4. Dave Strader, Phoenix Coyotes

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    Dave Strader took a tremendous step forward during the playoffs as an announcer.

    He is known for being the Phoenix Coyotes' lead announcer, but he also is also NBC's "B" announcer during the regular season,

    During the 2013 Stanley Cup Playoffs he was a member of an amazing duo with Brian Engblom that called an exciting Western Conference Final. Strader did a good job informing the public of things not always visible on camera, and he also provided thoughtful analysis throughout the playoffs.

3. Bob Miller, Los Angeles Kings

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    Bob Miller is a legend in the industry who has been the voice of the Los Angeles Kings for eons. He also became known as the voice of the Mighty Ducks from the Disney franchise, and it is hard not to think of the trilogy when listening to Miller call a Kings game.

    The Kings' play-by-play man is well versed in his craft, he has a genuine announcer voice that is very smooth and he does a great job explaining the on-ice action. Miller is also a walking encyclopedia that has a vast knowledge of hockey, and he educates viewers at home.

    Overall Miller is one of the best in the business, and it is shame that many fans have not had the experience of listening to Miller call a game.

2. Mike Emrick, NBC

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    Not everyone appreciates Mike Emrick’s persona, but even those who don't prefer his delivery should respect and admire his knowledge of hockey and the English language.

    Announcers often just stick to standards of jargon, but Emrick comes up with unique ways to describe the on-ice action.

    It is true that numerous YouTubers have parodied him, and people have complained about him on Twitter, but Emrick is a top-notch broadcaster. He may get annoying at times but he is great at pacing a game and letting it breath.

    When the intensity becomes passionate in the arena, Emrick allows the NBC mics do all the work, and he sits back to create an environment in which viewers at home feel like they are actually in the arena.

    In the clip above there is over 40 seconds of time in which there is no commentary, and, if you pay attention, you will hear the audio slightly increase so Chelsea Dagger can be heard at it's optimal volume.

    Emrick is still one of the best broadcasters in the business, and he is a legend of the industry.

     

1. Chris Cuthbert, TSN

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    Chris Cuthbert used to be a national announcer for CBC, but he now works for TSN. He has the tough task of knowing all the major players on each team and he does a great job capturing the emotion from inside the arena. 

    The lead TSN broadcaster has the privilege of calling a number of games throughout the year, and, in that role, he has been apart of some memorable calls. A quick YouTube search will yield multiple results, and the above is one of his most recent viral clips.

    Fans appreciate what he has done throughout his career, and he truly is the best broadcaster currently working on TV.

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