The 50 Best Announcers In Hockey History

PJ SapienzaContributor IIIJanuary 26, 2011

The 50 Best Announcers In Hockey History

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    The announcer.

    That person who brings the game to us, be it by TV or radio. 

    At minimum they simply call the action but the great ones, well they paint a picture so well that you feel as though you are there.  With the advent of TV the role of announcer changed, while the viewer could now see the action for themselves the announcer enlightened us and taught us more about our game.

    Chances are your favorite announcer is the one you grew up listening too.  That one you heard when you snuck the radio into bed trying to catch the final moments of your favorite team’s game.

    Here’s a list of the 50 best.  

50 Ken Kal

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    Kal has been the radio voice for the Detroit Red Wing for the past 15 seasons.

    Known for his high pitched “scores” calls during games.

49 Nick Nickson

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    Nickson has been with the Los Angeles Kings since 1981.  During that time he has worked both TV and radio.  Known for his smooth yet fast-paced delivery.

48 Paul Woods

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    Woods has been the radio announcer for the Red Wings since the 1980’s. 

47 Randy Hahn

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    Hahn has been with the San Jose Sharks for 17 years.  Prior to the Sharks he has also covered hockey for the Los Angeles Kings, Vancouver Canucks and Edmonton Oilers.  He has also voiced several video games.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g0P3ju6YZlw&playnext=1&list=PLBB06D88388A211EF&index=47

46 Don Earle

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    Earle called games for the Philadelphia Flyers and Boston Bruins.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NJclaX9HVhk

45 Bruce Martyn

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    Bruce Martyn served as the Detroit Red Wings announcer for 31 years(1964-1995).  He was known for his nearly contagious love for the sport and for his vibrant voice.  Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 1991.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ec_BVTvMX-0

44 Ken Daniels

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    Ken Daniels has been Detroit Red Wings TV announcer since 1997.

    He is the epitome of class.  During the 1998 Stanley Cups finals, he filled in on the radio broadcast for the regular host, Ken Kal, who was suffering  from a case of Laryngitis.  With less than a minute to go in the deciding game Daniels handed the mic to Kal Stating “I don't care if you can't talk, you have to bring it home."

    Daniels spent much of the early 1990’s with Hockey Night in Canada.  First as a reporter and eventually doing play by play.

43 Bill Chadwick

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    Broadcast for the New York Rangers on both TV and Radio from 1967-1981

    Outspoken and opinionated he was known for such great sayings such as “That guy handles the puck like a cow handles a gun” and “He couldn’t put the puck in the ocean if he was standing on the end of the dock.”

    Prior to broadcasting was known as an excellent referee and was elected to the Hall of Fame for his work.  He is the one credited with the hand signal system that is used by refs today.

42 Joe Bowen

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    Joe Bowen is the voice of the Toronto Maple Leafs.  He was called over 2100 games for the franchise.

    Known for his catchphrase “Holy Mackinaw!” 

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0qz54d-r81U

41 Wesley McKnight

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    One of the original broadcasters for Hockey Night in Canada.  Also called games for Toronto.  Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 1986.

40 Gilles Tremblay

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    Worked with La Soiree du Hockey from 1971-1997.  He was one of the first former players to enter the broadcasting field

    Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 2002.

39 Robert Wilson

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    Boston Bruins announcer from 1964-1994.  Wilson was known for his booming voice and great description of hockey fights. 

    Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 1987.

38 Alan Shaver

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    Voice of the Minnesota North Stars from their inception in 1967 until they moved to Dallas in 1993.

    Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 1993.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sGipq1AomMo

37 Edgar “Ted” Darling

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    Darling was the original voice of the Buffalo Sabres for 22 seasons.  Prior to that he worked with Hockey Night in Canada.

    Known for his call during the Great Lakes Blizzard of 1977 when due to the extreme amount of snow that hit the area, he phoned in the play by play while watching the telecast on TV.

    Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 1994.

36 Salvatore Messina

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    Called New York Rangers games for 30 years.  Despite growing up a Ranger fan was known for maintaining his objectivity while calling games.

    Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 2005.

35 Chuck Kaiton

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    Kaiton has been with the Hartford Whalers/Carolina Hurricanes since 1979.  He is a stickler for accurately pronouncing players names making sure he interviews players to understand the proper way to say their name.  He is also known for his exuberant play-calling, often showing just as much excitement when the opposing team scores.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qslZJ1JpoRg

    Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 2004.

34 James Dickinson "Dick" Irvin Jr

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    Worked for Hockey Night in Canada and Montreal Canadiens.  Holds the second longest broadcast tenure with Hockey Night in Canada.

    Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 1988.

33 James Robson

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    Radio and TV announcer for the Vancouver Canucks from 1970-1999.  Also worked with Hockey Night in Canada covering Western Canada games.

    Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 1992.

32 Brian McFarlane

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    McFarlane served as a commentator with Hockey Night in Canada for 25 years.  In addition to that he also broadcast games on CBS and NBC in the United States.

    Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 1995.

31 Richard Garneau

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    Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 1999.

    Popular host of La Soiree du Hockey he also covered 22 Olympics, seven Commonwealth and four Pan-American Games.

30 Don Cherry

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    While not a play by play hockey announcer when most people think of hockey broadcasters, Cherry is the first to come to mind.  He is known for his wild outfits, outspoken opinions and his sometimes un-objective reports.  Yet he has a passion and love for the sport that few can match.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L_S-00EH8fo&feature=related

29 Peter Maher

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    Since 1980, Maher has been the voice to the Calgary Flames.  He is the king of the “YEAH BABY!” call.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EcLQRdfK1vo

28 Gene Hart

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    Hart was the original voice of the Philadelphia Flyers and remained there for 29 years.  In the 1980’s he also covered the NHL on the USA Network where he was known for his catchphrase "Good night and good hockey.”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0regyljId0A

    Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 1997.

27 Jack Edwards

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    Currently the Boston Bruins play by play announcer.  He has also covered hockey for ESPN and  Versus.  Known for a vibrant style and such catch phrases as “Tabogganing," "Sticks a fork in it," "Sends it down the river" and  "Fungoes the puck”.  A Bingo game has even been invented using Edwards various phrases.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vQ9s7jP20Is

26 Darryl Reaugh

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    Reaugh announces for the Dallas Stars as well the NHL on Versus.  He has also worked for ESPN, Fox, Versus, Hartford Whalers and has been the announcers voice in two hockey video games.

    He uses an interesting combination of deep vocabulary and comedic timing.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NyxcVr6HeyE

25 Drew Remenda

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    Remenda has been served as the TV and radio voice for the San Jose Sharks.  He has also served as the voice in several video games. 

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CZUCePn4sQo  

24 Lloyd Pettit

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    Longtime Chicago Black Hawks announcer who is known for such sayings as "Here Come The Hawks," was "There's a shot... AND A GOAL!!!"

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JsXYB0qYyvM

    Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 1986.

23 William Hewitt

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    Hewitt worked in both TV and radio and is most known for being the radio voice of the Toronto Maple Leafs.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zGwvJieeuZk

    Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 2007.

22 Rod Phillips

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    Phillips has been the voice of the Edmonton Oilers since 1973. He is known for his long and load scream of “scoooooooooooores” when an Oiler scores a goal.

    Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 2003.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mS1ZGALYrZg

21 Budd Lynch

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    Lynch has worked with the Detroit Red Wings for over 60 years.  He was the team’s radio play by play announcer from 1949-1975.  At 93 years old, he still serves as the public address announcer for the Red Wings games.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ASEB56XfrhA

    Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 1985.

20 Pat Foley

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    Foley has been the voice of the Chicago Black Hawks for over 28 season.  He is known for great energy and enthusiasm.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ePwhITmUVBE

19 Randy Moller

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    Moller is the radio announcer for the Florida Panthers.  He is truly one of a kind.  Using various lines from songs, TV, movies, commercials and anything that else that comes to mind Moller has the most unique goal calls in the game.  In you only click one link, this is the one to click. 

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C3b_7S-sGBo

18 Fred Cusick

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    Cusick was the voice of the Boston Bruins for 45 years on TV and radio.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sGoGEjvvWrQ

    Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 1984.

17 Jim Highson

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    Hughson has been an announcer for several media outlets including  the Vancouver Canucks, CBC, ABC, TSN, ESPN and has been the voice of several video games.

    He has an enthusiastic yet clear and articulate delivery.  Known for his “That’s hockey” catchphrase.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0K_onEkPCxo

16 Danny Gallivan

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    Worked with Hockey Night in Canada, primarily covering Montreal Canadiens games, however he also covered Toronto Maple Leaf games for a while.  Known for his calls where others would just say save or hard shot become “scintillating" and “cannonading drives” with Gallivan.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZTJw2lYgXOA

15 Chris Cuthbert

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    Cuthbert has announced games for CBC and TSN is is widely considered on of the top announcers around.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dKD0x10bcrA

14 Harry Neale

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    Currently with the Buffalo Sabres, Neal has worked Hockey Night in Canada as well.  Known for his humor.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O96sMp8TLCg

13 Jiggs McDonald

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    McDonald was an NHL announcer for over 40 years.  He was the original voice of both the Los Angeles Kings and Atlanta Flames. He also covered the New York Islanders, Florida Panthers, Toronto Maple Leafs as well as national games.  He is believed to have announced more games than anyone.

    Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 1990.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WxpTeg7ZHns

12 Mike Lange

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    Lange has been with the Pittsburgh Penguins since 1974.  He is known for his colorful sayings that fans call Lange-isms.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SIHPd3vERUw

    Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 2001.

11 Bill Clement

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    Best known for his work with the Philadelphia Flyers, Clement has also covered hockey for NBC, Versus ESPN, satellite radio and several video games.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HOEtBU--2RI

10 Rick Jeanneret

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    Jeanneret has been the voice of the Buffalo Sabres since 1971.  He is currently the longest serving announcer in the NHL.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JEfbyrKnKc0

9 Howie Meeker

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    Meeker worked for Hockey Night in Canada in the 70’s and 80’s.  He is credited with using a telestrator during telecast providing more depth and analysis than announcers to that point.  He is also known for his willingness to be critical of any player regardless of team.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DVoNPQ0JEJI

8 Rene Lecavalier

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    The French Canadian voice of hockey for a generation as he was on La Soiree du Hockey for 30 years.

    Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 1994.

7 Gary Thorne

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    Thorne has called games for ESPN, ESPN2, NBC and other national sources.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T4a0pWTbgac

6 Bob Miller

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    Miller has been with the Los Angeles Kings since 1973. A great story teller who isn’t afraid to say what he thinks.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V5M5WWB4MgE

    Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 2000.

5 Mike Emrick

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    Emrick serves as the voice of the New Jersey Devils and handles national telecast for NBC and Versus.  Previously he has worked with CBS, ABC, TNT, ESPN, FOX and the Philadelphia Flyers.

    Known for his fun style and his amazing knowledge of facts about the game and its history.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eWwcHjNv86Y

    Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 2008.

4 Bob Cole

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    Cole has worked with Hockey Night in Canada, mainly covering the Toronto Maple Leafs and Montreal Canadiens.  He also covered at least one Stanley Cup game for 28 years.

    He is known for Colisms' such as "Heavens to Betsy!", "Oh Nelly!", and "What a dandy.”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xoB4ErM-e4M

    Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 1996.

3 Dan Kelly

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    Kelly was the voice of the St. Louis Blues from their start in 1969 until 1988.  He also called games for many national TV broadcast.

    Honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 1989.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cKW5YMylj3I

2 Mickey Redmond

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    Has been a popular analyst on Hockey Night in Canada , ESPN and NHL.  Currently he works with the Detroit Red Wings.  Known for Mickeyisms such as “Bingo Bango,”  “He got beat like a rented mule," “Like a lumberjack fighting for the last pork chop" and ‘Holy mackerel.”

    Redmond has the gift of being able to explain the game in a way that doesn’t lose newcomers while also making sure that even the most veteran watcher will still learn something.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4pHp0lFupTI

1 Foster Hewitt

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    Considered the father of hockey broadcasting, many heard their first NHL game as described by Hewitt over the radio.  He started the now much copied call of “He shoots, he scores” during his 40 years with Hockey Night in Canada.  Later he moved to television and was on the first televised hockey game in Canada.

    The Foster Hewitt Memorial Award is named in honor of him and is given to a broadcaster when they are inducted into the Hockey hall of Fame.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oO-bVMevT4I