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Mike "Doc" Emrick, (born August 1, 1946 in La Fontaine, Indianamarker) is an Americanmarker sportscaster noted mostly for his work in ice hockey. Emrick is currently the lead play-by-play announcer for the New Jersey Devils on MSG Plus, as well as the lead announcer for NHL national telecasts on both NBC and Versus. Among the many awards he has received is the NHL's Lester Patrick Award in 2004 and the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award by the Hockey Hall of Famemarker in 2008.

Biography

Background

Emrick earned a B.Sc. in speech from Manchester Collegemarker in 1968, a M.A. in radio/television from Miami Universitymarker (Ohio) in 1969, and a Ph.D. in Communications (radio/television/film) from Bowling Green State University in 1976 (a degree from which he gets his nickname, "Doc").

Emrick taught speech and broadcasting at Geneva Collegemarker in Beaver Falls, PAmarker from 1969-1971 and got his first experience of the NHL covering the Penguins as an unpaid correspondent for the Beaver County Timesmarker newspaper.

Broadcasting career

Emrick has been sportscasting professionally since 1973 when he was hired by Port Huron Flags' GM Morris Snider to do play-by-play and public relations for the IHL team. In 1977 he took on the same two roles with the first year AHL Maine Mariners for three seasons (broadcasting that club's Calder Cup championships in both 1978 and 1979) before moving up to the parent NHL Philadelphia Flyers. Emrick served as the Devils first voice in New Jersey, arriving for the 1982–83 NHL season. He returned to the team to replace Gary Thorne, who left after doing play-by-play for the 1993 Stanley Cup Playoffs and has been the team's voice ever since. He announced the team's 1995 Stanley Cup victory, alongside color commentator John Davidson in a national United States broadcast on Fox.

Emrick has also done play-for-play for CBS, NBC, ABC, Versus, TNT, ESPN, Fox, CSTV, SportsChannel Philadelphia, PRISM, Fox Sports Net, and others.

Emrick was the lead play-by-play announcer for The NHL on ESPN from 1986–1988. He first came to national over the air television doing regional games for NHL on ABC from 1993–1994. In 1995, Emrick became the lead play-by-play announcer for the NHL on Fox Game of the Week, calling regular-season games and Stanley Cup Finals. After Fox relinquished the NHL broadcast rights to ABC, he became a regional announcer for The NHL on ABC from 2000–2004 in the same backup game role he had at ABC in the early '90s. He would only call select playoff games at this time, but did file reports for ABC Sports and ESPN's Stanley Cup Finals coverage.

Emrick wore several hats in the 1980s working for the Philadelphia Flyers while their voice from 1988 to 1993. He was a spot announcer for Flyers home broadcasts from 1983-86, then was an in-studio analyst between 1986-88 when not covering national games. Emrick was promoted to the lead play-by-play slot for both local TV and cable for the team in 1988, remaining with the Flyers until the end of the 1992-93 season. For four of those years, Emrick was paired with former NHLer and national hockey broadcaster Bill Clement.

Since the 2005–06 NHL season, Emrick has been the lead play-by-play announcer for the NHL on Versus (formerly The NHL on OLN) and NHL on NBC, and since 2008, has served as an overall host of the telecast. He calls the top Conference Final and the entire Stanley Cup Finals for both networks. He has called games in 11 Stanley Cup Finals on TV (for ESPN, Fox, Versus/OLN, and NBC). He has also called eight NHL All-Star Game for Fox, Versus and ESPN. He called the 1996 World Cup of Hockey for the Prime Network and the 2004 World Cup of Hockey for ESPN.

Emrick has worked two Olympic Games for NBC, two for CBS, and one for TNT. He called Water polo at the 2004, men's and women's ice hockey at the 2006 Winter Olympics and will call Ice Hockey at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics.

He also called some National Football League and men's NCAA basketball tournament games while at CBS, and called the National Lacrosse League All-Star Game and Championship Game while at NBC.

Honors

Emrick won the 1997 National CableACE Award for best play-by-play announcer.

Emrick received the 2004 Lester Patrick Trophy, presented annually for "outstanding service to hockey in the United States". In that same year, he won a New York Emmy Award for his work on New Jersey Devils' telecasts. He was one of the five nominees for the 2009 national Emmy Award for the category of "Outstanding Sports Personality - Play by Play" for his work on the "NHL on NBC" with NBC Sports.

In 2008, the Hockey Hall of Famemarker awarded him the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award, for outstanding contributions to hockey broadcasting.

On January 30, 2009 Emrick was honored at the Prudential Centermarker during Mike "Doc" Emrick night to celebrate Emrick's broadcasting career of over two decades.

Style

"Doc" and "Chico"
Devils' broadcasting pair of Emrick and color commentator Chico Resch, or "Doc and Chico" to Devils fans, is noted for their ability to break the tension of a hockey game through various types of humor, many times improvised and unintentional. For example, in a game during the 2008–09 NHL season, Resch was discussing a rebound that came off of Devils netminder Scott Clemmensen:

Chico Resch: "...and Scotty [Clemmensen] was tellin' me this morning that he likes his new pads like that...the puck should rebound almost like a quarter off of a balloon, Doc.

Emrick: ...But you don't spend too much free time throwing quarters at balloons, Mr. Resch, do you?

Other recurring comedic bits arise during games. After Emrick or Resch analyzes the play of a goaltender. If Emrick feels that Resch is sympathizing towards the goalie due to his former play at the same position, Emrick will add a sarcastic comment which talks about the glory of goaltending and how they are "by far" the most important players in the game.

In the event of an odd play or bounce of the puck, Doc has cited "the unseen hand," as the culprit, which always gets a laugh from Chico.

Emrick's knowledge of the game of hockey has been deemed "encyclopedic" and he is known for his eloquent vocabulary, using words in his broadcasts that are not commonly used in sports play-by-play (such as referring to a goaltender's equipment as "paraphernalia"). Often, during line changes or zone clearings, Emrick will discuss interesting facts about a player's personal life, hockey records, or contributions to sports.

Memorable games called

1980s

  • May 31, 1987: Game 7, Stanley Cup Finals, Flyers vs Oilers. The Oilers win their third Cup in four years. (ESPN)
  • February 9, 1988: All-Star Game. Mario Lemieux caps a three-goal, six-point night with an overtime goal. (ESPN)
  • May 24, 1988: Game 4, Stanley Cup Finals, Oilers vs Bruins. A second-period power outage at Boston Gardenmarker causes the game to be suspended and re-played in Edmonton two nights later. (ESPN)
  • April 11, 1989: Game 5, Patrick Division semifinals, Flyers vs. Capitals. Flyers goaltender Ron Hextall becomes first netminder to score a goal in the playoffs - a shorthanded tally in Philadelphia's 8-5 win. (WGBSmarker-Philadelphia Channel 57)
  • April 26, 1989: Game 5, Patrick Division semifinals, Flyers vs. Penguins. Mario Lemieux scored a record-tying five goals and three assists in the Penguins' 10-7 win. (WGBS)
  • April 30, 1989: Game 7, Patrick Division finals, Flyers vs. Penguins. Flyers backup goaltender Ken Wregget makes 40 saves in a 4-1 victory, earning the Flyers a berth in the Wales Conference Finals. (WGBS)


1990s



2000s

  • February 20, 2006: Winter Olympics. Sweden defeats Finland for the Gold Medal in Turin, Italy. (NBC)
  • June 19, 2006: Game 7, Stanley Cup Finals, Oilers vs. Hurricanes. Hurricanes win their first Championship. (NBC)
  • June 6, 2007: Game 5, Stanley Cup Finals, Senators vs. Ducks. Ducks win their first Stanley Cup Championship. (NBC)
  • January 1, 2008: Winter Classic, Penguins vs. Sabres. The league's first outdoor game in the United States, from Ralph Wilson Stadiummarker in Orchard Park, N.Y. (NBC)
  • June 4, 2008: Game 6, Stanley Cup Finals, Red Wings vs. Penguins. The Red Wings win their 11th Stanley Cup Championship (NBC).
  • June 12, 2009: Game 7, Stanley Cup Finals, Penguins vs. Red Wings. Pittsburgh wins 2-1 to win their first Stanley Cup title in 17 years. (NBC)


Miscellaneous

Emrick is a founding member, and still president of, the NHL Pronunciation Guide, which is used as a guide for all NHL broadcasters for some of hockey's most difficult names. He is Vice President of the NHL Broadcaster's Association, and he is also a member of the Hockey Hall of Famemarker Selection Committee.

Notes

External links




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