Jake Baskin loves the NHL, understands the depth of the game and what’s required to be a good radio or TV announcer. He advises us on changes we should expect in 2023-24.
Tomorrow, we will list the announcers by team for radio and television.
- In perhaps the most shocking broadcasting move of the offseason, the Los Angeles Kings elected to simulcast their games on radio and television and let go of young play-by-play announcer Alex Faust, who had been with the team for six years. Hall of Fame radio announcer Nick Nickson, 69, will lead the simulcast. TV analyst Jim Fox will remain in his role, and radio analyst Daryl Evans will also have a role on the broadcast.
- The Pittsburgh Penguins made multiple changes to their broadcast team, most notably switching their play-by-play announcers. Josh Getzoff, 35, moves from radio to TV, while Steve Mears slides over to the radio booth.
- The Penguins also let go of longtime TV color commentator Bob Errey. The team succeeds him with a rotation of former Pens and national television personalities Colby Armstrong and Mike Rupp, as well as popular radio analyst Phil Bourque.
- The Montreal Canadiens hired Victor Findlay as their radio play-by-play announcer, quietly replacing Peter Ruttgaizer after one season. Findlay had previously been the lead commentator for TSN’s junior hockey coverage. At 27, he is the youngest broadcaster in the NHL.
- The Habs also made a change in the analyst chair on radio. Sergio Momesso is out and former Princeton star J.P. O’Connor takes over. O’Connor had previously filled in for Momesso when the latter was working on television.
- TNT lead Inside-the-Glass analyst Keith Jones left the network to become President of the Philadelphia Flyers, for whom he had also previously served as TV color commentator. Turner scooped up Brian Boucher from ESPN to work on the top team with Kenny Albert and Eddie Olczyk. ESPN will move AJ Mleczko to its #2 broadcast team in Boucher’s place.
- Flyers local broadcasts will also feature Boucher as the color commentator. The ex-goaltender had filled in for Jones on games when he was working nationally. Scott Hartnell, a studio analyst with NBC Sports Philadelphia, will serve as Boucher’s fill-in.
- Former Flyers enforcer Todd Fedoruk is the new color commentator on that team’s radio broadcasts, replacing the retiring Steve Coates.
- St. Louis Blues TV color commentator and TNT #2 analyst Darren Pang left the Blues for the same role with the Chicago Blackhawks, reportedly for financial reasons. Pang, a goaltender for the Hawks in the 1980s, takes the place of Patrick Sharp, who left for a front-office role in Philadelphia, and Troy Murray, who moves back to radio full-time. Studio analyst Caley Chelios will fill in for Pang when he is on TNT.
- Vancouver Canucks TV analyst John Garrett, 72, elected to step back from local broadcasts and finish his career working a partial national schedule for Sportsnet. The Canucks brought back Vancouver native and Seattle Kraken radio analyst Dave Tomlinson to handle most of their games, and ESPN lead color man Ray Ferraro, a Vancouver resident, will also work some contests locally.
- NHL Network play-by-play announcer Stephen Nelson took a job with the Los Angeles Dodgers back in January and will no longer appear on the channel. E.J. Hradek will handle most of NHLN’s Showcase broadcasts.
- To take the place of Tomlinson, the Kraken hired Al Kinisky, who had played junior hockey in Seattle and worked as a color commentator at the junior level for over a decade.
- Calgary Flames radio analyst Peter Loubardias, a play-by-play announcer in the league in the 2000s and 2010s, left that job and eventually joined the Flames organization as a scout in September. Two-time Olympic gold medalist Meaghan Mikkelson takes over in that chair.
- Anaheim Ducks radio analyst Dan Wood was let go after the 2022–23 season after 14 years in the booth. He will be replaced by Emerson Etem, 31, a Southern California native who played 115 games for the Ducks.
TOMORROW TEAM-BY-TEAM INFORMATION!
Lead team: Sean McDonough, Ray Ferraro
Other PxP: Bob Wischusen, John Buccigross, Steve Levy, Mike Monaco, Leah Hextall
Other analysts: AJ Mleczko, Kevin Weekes, Ryan Callahan, Dominic Moore
Lead team: Kenny Albert, Eddie Olczyk, Brian Boucher
Other PxP: Brendan Burke
Other analysts: Darren Pang, Jennifer Botterill
Lead team: Chris Cuthbert, Craig Simpson
Other PxP: John Bartlett, Harnarayan Singh, Rick Ball, John Shorthouse, Mike Luck
Other analysts: Garry Galley, Louie DeBrusk, John Garrett, Greg Millen, Jamal Mayers, Sam Cosentino
PxP: E.J. Hradek, Jamie Hersch
Analysts: Kevin Weekes, Mike Rupp, Mike Johnson, Dave Reid