Pittsburgh Penguins Announcer Paul Steigerwald: A New Level of Unprofessionalism

James CriderCorrespondent IFebruary 12, 2011

UNIONDALE, NY - FEBRUARY 11:  The New York Islanders and the Pittsburgh Penguins mix it up during the second period on February 11, 2011 at Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, New York.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images


The best word to describe the comments made by FSN employee and play-by-play commentator of the Pittsburgh Penguins, Paul Steigerwald, during Pittsburgh's 9-3 blowout loss to the New York Islanders on Friday night.

Throughout the emotion-filled contest, which featured numerous fights and major penalties, Steigerwald became so irate with what was happening on the ice that he began to make derogatory comments about the New York Islanders organization.

"When you're one of the worst teams in hockey and an embarrassment to the National Hockey League, I guess nothing really matters at this point," Steigerwald said.

Later, he goes on to berate New York Islanders general manager Garth Snow, saying "I'm sure Garth Snow is just proud as punch of his team right now."

For a clearly upset Steigerwald to berate the New York Islanders organization, its players and its general manager shows a complete lack of professionalism, respect and class.

Announcers have a tough job in that they have to be able to cater to their employer, casual fans and die hard fans all at the same time.

The task becomes even tougher when the game they're commentating on turns into complete chaos, leaving them forced with the task of not only trying to find positive light in a very grim situation but also trying to keep a dwindling viewing audience from changing the channel.

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Making personal, malicious comments against the opposing hockey club isn't a solution.

Previously having joked about the death of former hockey player Hobey Baker in a December 2009 Penguins game, it will be shameful if FSN Pittsburgh or the NHL themselves do not seek disciplinary action to rein Steigerwald in.

Inflammatory comments from a person who makes a living trying to promote the game of hockey should not be taken lightly.

The NHL, the players and most importantly the fans deserve better.