Friday, May 23, 2008

Cole, Millen get call for finals

CBC’S Hockey Night in Canada kicks off the 2008 Stanley Cup Final on Saturday, May 24 at 7:30 p.m. ET as host Ron MacLean sets the stage for Game One ... MacLean sits down with Penguins star captain Sidney Crosby – who is making his Stanley Cup Final debut, while Elliotte Friedman speaks with Red Wing veteran defenseman Chris Chelios, the NHL’s all-time leader in post-season games played. Scott Oake, Kelly Hrudey and Craig Simpson will also be on-hand, priming fans for Game One with insight and analysis, live from Joe Louis Arena in Detroit.

At 8 p.m. ET, HNIC drops the puck on the 2008 Stanley Cup Final ... Bob Cole and Greg Millen hit the broadcast booth to call the showdown, while Oake and Friedman report from ice level.
>> press release
I generally find the criticisms of Bob Cole to be a tad harsh, but in a situation like this, there's no question I'd rather have Jim Hughson in the play-by-play role.

Or Chris Cuthbert, for that matter.

As for the Crosby sit down, it'd be nice if we hear something new from The Kid. Is there anything left to learn about him at this point?
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15 Comments:

At 5:46 PM, May 23, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

James. You missed another ex-Hockey Night Alumnus that is sorely missed..Ken Daniels who does the Red Wings games on Fox Sportsnet. He's fabulous. I doubt Hockey Night could afford to hire him back from the Wings though.

 
At 5:58 PM, May 23, 2008, Anonymous Matt said...

Disappointing. I think Cole has improved since Millen replaced Harry Neale as the lead analyst, but Jim Hughson is hands-down the best play-by-play guy in the business. Cole is merely above-average. I know the CBC has a long history with Cole, but you've got to cut the chord and move-on at some point.

 
At 6:01 PM, May 23, 2008, Blogger Shawn said...

What people take for granted about Bob Cole is his ability to make a moment feel special. He sells the drama better than almost anyone in the sport. Does he get some little things wrong from time to time? Sure, but he knows how to use his tone of voice to really accentuate the biggest games and the biggest moments.

I think Hughson is fantastic no question, but he doesn't have the same flare for the dramatic as Cole. Not yet anyway. That's why the man is a hall of famer.

 
At 6:16 PM, May 23, 2008, Blogger Shane Giroux said...

Completely agree with Shawn. I love Hughson but he just doesn't impart the drama that Bob Cole does.

 
At 6:47 PM, May 23, 2008, Blogger Jeremy said...

I'm no Cole-hater either -- he's got a real classic vibe, with that warm voice and authentic flair -- but in the games I've heard from him this year, his age has really shown. He's a step behind the play and often doesn't bother with names at all any more. If it was radio, you wouldn't have the foggiest clue what was going on until somebody scored. And Millen has always been irritating, hasn't he? Simpson blows him out of the water as a colour guy.

I've been so impressed with Hughson/Simpson. Leaving them out of the final sort of looks like another nod to CBC's home base in Toronto, where Cole is an institution from calling all those Leafs games.

 
At 8:04 PM, May 23, 2008, Blogger davek said...

Bob Cole has a classic voice - like a Foster Hewitt. He brings a flair to the game that the other announcers can't match.

 
At 8:04 PM, May 23, 2008, Blogger davek said...

Bob Cole's classic voice makes the game special. Any game he does is more exciting because of its quality (an announcer voice). If he misses some little details big deal. Go Bob!

 
At 8:27 PM, May 23, 2008, Blogger andy grabia said...

Five days off, no Canadian teams, no compelling stories, bad announcers...Zzzz. When does training camp start?

 
At 9:12 PM, May 23, 2008, Blogger Scarlett said...

I'd take Cole over Hughson too. He has the knowledge and the flair. The criticisms are way off base. He's still THE play-by-play guy and good for CBC for going with him! Too bad there is very little of interest in the finals. Detroit is going to have an easy time of it.

 
At 10:13 PM, May 23, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, Cole rules. Usually people gang up to kick the crap out of him, but I love him.

Perhaps he was at his dramatic best in the 1987 Cup Finals, Game 7, when Glenn Anderson scored. "One goal -- that's all that separates these two -- Anderson and Messier again! Anderson... SCORES!"

Look it up on YouTube.

 
At 10:17 PM, May 23, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cole and Millen are so great that's why Hockey Night In Toronto had to go into full damage control during Montreal's series. Bob breaks out in hives at the prospect of not doing his Maple Leafs and the end product shows.
Maybe the senile old fart will learn all the players names before the end of this series but don't hold your breath.
OH BABY! What a save by the goalie...Here's Andrei Kostopolous of the Canadiens.
Retire you old loser and hey Toronto centric media he's over the hill past his prime and should be shunted off to wayne and shuster land.

 
At 12:12 AM, May 24, 2008, Blogger Shawn said...

I agree with those who like Simpson over Millen as a colour guy. That being said, you don't want to throw Simpson in there when Millen has been working with Cole all year and establishing chemistry.

I think Doc is the best in the business today. Cole is still the best big game announcer. He isn't as prepared or sharp as Hughson no question. I guess it depends what you want from your announcer.

Cole couldn't do radio at this stage of the game... but he's NOT doing radio, he's doing TV. On TV you're there more to add to the picture... on radio you're painting the picture. Big difference.

 
At 4:45 AM, May 24, 2008, Blogger Old said...

Too bad they don't have Mike Lange calling a game or two.

"She wants to sell my monkey!"

 
At 11:57 AM, May 24, 2008, Blogger Adam C said...

I've been impatient with Cole getting the details wrong for 20 years now, and obviously he's not getting better at them.

However, what I have come to appreciate is the dynamic quality to his call. When he's calm and quiet you can get up and fix yourself a snack, but when his voice gets louder, higher, faster it's time to sit up and pay attention. Hughson is accurate and prepared, but he only has one level.

And to be fair, guys, it really isn't Cole's fault that HNIC has become so Leaf-centric the past 10 years.

 
At 12:43 PM, May 24, 2008, Blogger Sean said...

That's disappointing. Cole is arguably the worst play-by-play commentator to ever call a game (yes, maybe even worse than Rick Jeanneret). Maybe he was decent a couple hundred years ago, but today he is downright terrible. He never knows the names of the players, he'll just randomly agree with Millen, even if he's completely wrong (which he is sometimes), and he blabbers on about the tiniest, unimportant detail and then goes silent, so by the time he is back to calling the game, it's been about 30 seconds since you last heard what was going on. Thank God he doesn't do radio.....

 

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