Jan 30, 2014; Ottawa, Ontario, CAN; Tampa Bay Lightning goalie Ben Bishop (30) during warmup prior to game against Ottawa Senators at Canadian Tire Centre. Mandatory Credit: Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports

Tampa Bay Lightning Announcers Got Game!

Feb 1, 2014; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Tampa Bay Lightning goalie Ben Bishop (30) reacts during the second period against Montreal Canadiens at Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports

So, I’m sitting here watching the Superbowl, just like many of you are, too, I’m sure.  Are you wondering, as I am, if is this the lamest Superbowl ever?  Ya gotta feel for the Broncos, getting all stomped on like they are.  Not much fun to watch, even painful at times.  That’s why we turned to the commercials.

Aside from the actual game, the Superbowl commercials have gained a life of their own in past years, cultivating quite a cult following who countdown to kickoff merely to watch those fabled 30-second stories.  We all anticipated more great ones this year, but for some reason they were mostly disappointing, nay, boring, unfunny.  Sigh.

The announcers weren’t terribly entertaining, either, and that makes me appreciate the Tampa Bay Lightning announcers, our guys Paul Kennedy, Chris Dingman, Matt Sammon, Dave Mishkin, Rick Peckham, and Bobby “The Chief” Taylor.  Engaging, goofy, smart-alecky, and right on the money.  They don’t hold things back, especially Chief, and I often wonder if the team reviews his comments on their play.

My appreciation was reinforced even more as I was forced to listen to Saturday’s game against the Montreal Canadiens on my car’s NHL station which was a Canadian feed.  Those announcers were difficult to listen to, hard to understand (high-pitch? Poor elocution? I dunno.) And definitely unfunny.  They sure sounded like Bob and Doug McKenzie, a Canadian comedy duo, but nary a “You hoser” in there.  (Google it.  I’ll wait.)

In fact, these announcers were blatantly lying about the “spearing” incident.  They completely blamed G Ben Bishop for the whole thing, saying he struck first, and that Prust was practically an innocent bystander.  I couldn’t tell at the time, as I only had audio not video, but when I reviewed the tape back home, it clearly, CLEARLY showed Prust jabbing Bishop after chirping at him because he didn’t like Bish talking to the refs.  And only then did Bishop stand up for himself.

The rest of the game was mis-announced by these guys, badmouthing Radko Gudas for being, well, Gudas, and generally whining about the rest of the team whenever they could.  I understand those Canadian guys may be a bit biased, but at least our guys call it as it is, even when it’s “unflattering” for the Bolts.

So the next time you’re forced to listen to the hockey game instead of enjoying all the  wonder that is TV, be sure to tune in to AM 970 to hear the real game, and appreciate our announcers.  And keep those earplugs handy for the next time Mishkin screams “SCOOOORE!!”

Because there will always be a next time.  Go Bolts!



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