The voice of hockey is retiring
Mike "Doc" Emrick, who has broadcast 47 years of pro hockey, won eight sports Emmy awards and is a member of seven halls of fame, retired on Monday.
Why it matters: Emrick, affectionately known as "Doc" for his Ph.D. in communications, was as about close as a broadcaster can get to being universally beloved.
- What he's saying: "This just seemed to be the time that was right," Emrick, 74, told NY Post. He called his 22nd Stanley Cup Finals last month.
- Fun fact: Doc grew up in farm-country Indiana and never played hockey. He also doesn't know how to skate.
Play-by-play style: Known for his abundance of verbs, Emrick once used 153 different words to describe the movement of the puck during a USA-Canada game at the 2014 Olympics.
- "He was able to get away with a descriptive, radiolike, wood-to-wood calls, on network television," former Miami Heat play-by-play announcer David J. Halberstam told NYT.
- "The textbook says, 'Caption, don't describe. Vin Scully said: 'On radio you’re a puncher, and on television you're a counterpuncher.' Emrick broke the cardinal rule on each of his broadcasts, yet he was beloved."
Looking ahead: This could be just the beginning of drastic changes to NHL broadcasts, with NBC's longtime U.S. rights deal set to expire after next season.
The last word: At the end of every Stanley Cup Final since 1990, Emrick read the words of AHL beat writer Steve Summers:"The episodes in life that last so many years in memory are often measured in fleeting moments as they happen."
🎥 Watch: Farewell, Doc (NBC Sports)