ESPN is bringing back the NHL. The sports network hasn’t broadcast the professional hockey league since 2004-05, when it lost the rights to NBC, but that changes with a new rights deal starting in 2022.
Among the major points of speculation is around the network’s broadcast plans. Most have figured that Steve Levy, ESPN’s do-it-all broadcaster who recently took up the Monday Night Football mantle, will be among the lead broadcasters for hockey on ESPN.
Levy has a long history with hockey, dating back to calling NHL games in the 1990s and 2000s. He calls the NCAA Frozen Four for the network, and has done play-by-play for the World Cup of Hockey. He’s a natural fit.
He’s not the only prominent broadcaster connected to the role, however. Sean McDonough, who previously led the network’s Monday Night Football coverage and is one of its major college football play-by-play broadcasters, is also in the mix according to sports media insider Andrew Marchand.
Besides Steve Levy as ESPN’s potential NHL No. 1, a name to watch is Sean McDonough.
— Andrew Marchand (@AndrewMarchand) April 27, 2021
Most probably know McDonough for his work in all levels of football as well as college basketball. He has plenty of hockey experience as well.
He has called both college hockey and NHL games for ABC and ESPN, and called the sport in the 1998 Winter Olympics for CBS. He’s regarded as one of the best play-by-play broadcasters in sports, so hockey fans would probably welcome his involvement.
ESPN has inked a seven-year deal with the National Hockey League. The network will broadcast four Stanley Cup Finals series between 2022-28.
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