Saturday, 22 December 2018

Scary Moments In The Booth

I was doing a little channel-surfing tonight as I waited for the Jets-Canucks game from Vancouver to start. I landed on the Anaheim-Buffalo game for a few moments and caught the familiar voice of long-time play-by-play broadcaster Rick Jeanneret in the first period. Jeanneret's iconic voice and call are as familiar as Bob Cole's or Doc Emrick's, but it's the way he goes from being calm to being overly-excited when making a call that has me appreciating his work. His iconic calls are some of the best in hockey history, and it's hard to imagine him not calling the Buffalo Sabres when they play.

As I continued to look for something entertaining to watch - sorry, Anaheim and Buffalo - I didn't go back to this particular game. Instead, I landed on something else and watched that as I counted down the minutes until the Jets and Canucks took to the ice. Frankly, it's a good thing I didn't go back because there were some scary moments in the press box regarding the health of Rick Jeanneret in the third period.
As you can imagine, there was confusion and concern all over social media as it appeared that Rick Jeanneret was in some kind of trouble. There were periods of long gaps between him calling the game, and the plays he did call sounded like he was struggling in some way.

And then this tweet popped up.
Look, I have zero affiliation with the Buffalo Sabres. I don't own a jersey, I don't own any merchandise, and I've been to any of their games whether they be in Buffalo or on the road. What I do know is that Rick Jeanneret's health, especially at this time of year, is of the highest importance regardless of whether Buffalo beats Anaheim tonight.

The Sabres were reportedly going to issue an update on Jeanneret's health after the game, but it seems that news was slow to trickle back to the arena on Buffalo's beloved broadcaster. My thoughts, prayers, and best wishes are with Rick Jeanneret and his family tonight as doctors work to help him with whatever is ailing him.

When it comes to health, hockey can take a backseat. Here's hoping Rick Jeanneret is fine and returns to the broadcast booth soon. More importantly, here's hoping he'll be at home for Christmas where he belongs.

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

UPDATE: According to the Sabres on Sunday, Rick Jeanneret "is resting and doing well". That's excellent news, and here's hoping we get to hear one of his iconic calls soon. In the meantime, let's just hope that Rick Jeanneret gets the rest he needs to be back at 100%!

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