Bob Cole: The Voice That Divides Us All

Bob Cole: The Voice That Divides Us AllI've made no secret over the years what I think about Bob Cole as a hockey game commentator. A couple of years ago I pleaded with the CBC to let Bob Cole continue calling Saturday night Leafs games.

I loved every syllable he uttered. I love Bob Cole's voice and style, I always have. He provided the voiceover for all my favourite hockey memories. Every Leafs playoff goal of my life has been called by Mr. Bob Cole and I'll always love him for it.

Hearing his voice tonight, I realized how much better Leafs games are when he's behind the microphone. Not only do I hope Bob Cole doesn't retire, but I hope the CBC gives him back to us and has him call every Saturday night Leafs game next season. That's the way it used to be, and that's the way it should be.

Last night, Bob Cole called the awesome Leafs - Habs game on Hockey Night in Canada, and I loved it. He sounded great... there's no other voice like Bob Cole's and I sincerely hope he's up to calling every Hockey Night in Canada Leafs game until he sheds his mortal coil.

We don't get Bob Cole calling many Leafs games these days. We usually get the much less interesting Jim Hughson who has a decent voice but lacks Bob Cole's poetic flavour and irreplaceable timber timbre. It's that flavour Bob Cole adds that has me easily forgiving if he mispronounces James van Riemsdyk's name or misidentifies a player. He's human, and 79-years old, and a minor mistake like that never bothers me. Like I said, he's the best hockey commentator I've ever heard and until I hear someone as good I'd like to hear the best.

Without failure, every time Bob Cole calls a Leafs game on Hockey Night in Canada, I celebrate on Twitter. Every time I do that I'm hit with a series of replies that he's too old and should retire. Many, it seems, dislike Bob Cole calling hockey games, and it never fails to baffle me.

I want to know what you think of Bob Cole calling Leafs games in 2013. Would you rather Jim Hughson? Would you rather someone else? Does it really offend you when he's a step behind a play that you're watching in real-time?

Why don't you appreciate Bob Cole the way I do?

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Comments (68)

Gump

I agree with Mike, Bob Cole is a hockey announcer legend. Sports is about emotion - anticipation of the game, skills on display that thrill, tense moments when your team is holding back the opposition (or pressing for the tying goal) and many, many more (annual disappointment with the Leafs, boredom with the trap, etc.). I want a play-by-play man who can help carry that emotion and nobody does it better than Cole. Even his signature quote "everything is happening" sums up perfectly the moments of the game where it does seem that - everything is happening.
If you want perfectly called games, get a robot, or better yet, read the play-by-play online, then you'll get the accuracy you so desire. I don't really care about perfection, give me the 'feeling' of the game anytime.

February 10, 2013 / 15:18

dale

Nobody does it better than Bob other than when I was growing up listening to Bill Hewitt who also was an Icon.

Bob & Harry like 2 peas in a pod

February 10, 2013 / 15:56

Corey

Yeah, Bob's great, but I miss Harry Neale and his ridiculously precise ice measurements like, "Jagr fires a howitzer from 23 feet out".

February 10, 2013 / 16:32

Gary

I agree with you Mike ,but he is probably still calling the game and it ended almost 24 hours ago.

He was my all time favourite but he misses so much and Healy and Hrudey really had to bail him out last night...several times.

I like Joe Bowen. He has emotion. He knows the game and is fun to listen to. I still associate Jim Hughson with Vancouver and he just doesn't sound right for Leaf games.

February 10, 2013 / 16:54

mississauga Phil

Bob Cole calling games bribgs me back to warching hockey with my old man. I'm with Mike, his voice, the passion.....until I hear "Sitler passes to Salming" during a 2013 game, I'll allow him a slip up here and there

February 10, 2013 / 17:21

Brian

Bob still has the best voice but his best days are behind him...he's too far behind the play and makes as many mistakes now as Harry always used to make...unfortunately I think it's time for him to retire

February 10, 2013 / 17:49

Dave Williams

He is no Danny Gallivan, but he has made a crappy team sound exciting for over 3 decades. Maybe he is the curse that is keeping the Leafs from being a championship team.

February 10, 2013 / 17:56

Jason from Sudbury

I didnt mind Bob Cole till a few years ago.
I would have to say that Gord Miller and Jim Hughson are probably my 2 favorits though.

February 10, 2013 / 18:11

Argie

If I had to say something nice about Cole it would be his voice - sounds great, even at the advance age of 104.

However, being an announcer is more than just great pipes. Knowing the players, being able to follow the play and knowing when to let the picture tell the story is also relevant. Cole sucks at all of the above. I swear he still thinks he's calling the game for radio the way he gives every minute detail - eg. "the skater carries the puck past the blueline" (yeah Bob we can all see that you old tool).

February 10, 2013 / 18:22

Blind Dave

As I said in Open Mike, I'm a huge Coley fan, and always will be. Yes he is a bit behind the play, yes he mispronounces names, yes the others have to bail him out occasionally, bu he's still the best hockey announcer on the planet. Jim Hughson is good, but he doesn't have the passion and excitement that Bob brings to a game.

Did anyone put down Foster Hewitt for butchering the 72 Summit Series? Hell no, that was classic, even with all the butchered names and calls!

If you want articulate, precise, and easy to listen to, then it's Dan Schulman (baseball - TSN and ESPN). But Dan is a rarity.

February 10, 2013 / 18:33

Blind Dave

Argie said: (yeah Bob we can all see that you old tool

Blind Dave says: Not necessarily!!!

Ok, I can see a bit, but I have to be right up to the idiot box to "really" see. Otherwise, a mix of radio announcing on tv is actually a good thing. I do like to sit on the sofa, but visually that puts me at a disadvantage.

Hey, even well-sighted people multi task to the max these days. Cole's play-by-play alerts the viewer to maybe pay attention from time-to-time.

February 10, 2013 / 18:39

Mississauga Phil

@ Mike - the only person who really disagrees with you is Argie, who would disagree if you said water is wet.....

Semms most of us are willing to forgive a few minor errors in favour of tradition.

February 10, 2013 / 18:58

Speysidephil

I stated my opinion on open mike regarding Bob Coles play by play last night.
His time has come and gone unfortunately.
The issues are all stated accurately in some of the above posts.
I would prefer Joe Bowen over Houghson any day.

February 10, 2013 / 18:59

Argie

phil,

I occasionally agree with both you and Mike (more often you than Mike) so I would have to agree that water is in fact wet....

February 10, 2013 / 19:02

Anon&on

I think of Bob Cole as 'folksy'.
I don't think that's bad, even when it's bad- sure beats the conglomerate style. I like when he catches himself being a homer, and then tries to come up with something nice and balancing to say about the visiting team.

I still think of a great Mike Toth moment back when he was on the mid morning with Hogan on the Fan 590. Toth did his Cole impression that went something like- "He skates across the line, he's playing hockey! Because hockey is the game he plays!".

That's not exactly what Toth came up with, but that's what I hear every time I hear Bob Cole.

February 10, 2013 / 19:07

Boomer

Mike, I'm with you all the way. It's simply just the voice and the tradition behind it. I love me some Bob Cole!

February 10, 2013 / 23:01

Boomer

I too miss Harry and some of his sayings. I think he stays awake at night thinking some of them up.

One of my favs..."He can turn on a dime and give you 9 cents change".

February 10, 2013 / 23:03

Justin

As much as I'd love Bob Cole to do all the Leafs games it won't happen - Jim Hughson has it in his contract that he is to be the lead announcer for HNIC.

I don't understand how fans can't look past the very occasional minor mistake and take in the poetic flow of Cole's voice calling a game. He just SOUNDS like hockey, he has that big game voice. He makes the game MUCH more exciting than Hughson. Hearing Cole call a game just sound right, that's the best way I can put it. There's no one I'd rather hear calling a Leafs game than Cole.

February 10, 2013 / 23:04

Pigeon Toed Dave

Jim Hughson and Simpson put me to sleep. Plus Hughson is an arrogant son of a gun. When I lived on Chemong Lake I lived right beside Roger Neilson and he was a fantastic neighbor always bringing stuff for my kids and let me bring the hockey team over to his house as he had a fantastic games room. Hughson lived just down the street and he would not even give a wave going by his house. Cole is king or I would like to see Paul Romanuk as he has great enthusiasum in his voice.

February 11, 2013 / 06:47

elvis

I agree with Gary - I associate Hughson with Vancouver.

Cole is a legend and it's a treat to hear him do the occasional game. Seems like once a month is probably a good cadence for him and us.

February 11, 2013 / 07:47

Ryan

Maybe I'm misunderstanding...

But I think you mean his timbre, not his timber. You're referring to the sound quality or tone colour right?

February 11, 2013 / 08:15

Mark H.

While I don't think there is an obvious replacement (Doc Emerick in the US would be the only one I can think of off hand) and Cole still has an amazing voice, what kills me now is he is absolutely useless as a play by play man now because for the most part he can't see the players he's calling. The litmus test for me when it comes to play by play men is if my back is turned or I have the picture off, can I still visualize the play on the ice and who has the puck based on the call?

Sadly Cole has failed that test for quite awhile now.

February 11, 2013 / 08:48

Mark H.

Forgot to add (sorry!!)...

That being said, bringing Cole out for the occasional game isn't a bad thing.

February 11, 2013 / 08:49

mike

Cob Cole continually makes mistakes. He should of been fired or retired at least 5 years ago

February 11, 2013 / 11:23

Argie

To go off on a bit of a tangent here, Mike Emerick of NBC is really annoying. He always sounds like he's about to ejaculate whenever there's a scoring chance.

Also, his levels are way too low. Andrew the sound dude (a regular here) could comment on this. I find I can barely hear him because the sound from the ice is drowning him out. is it just me?

February 11, 2013 / 11:40

Johnny Timmins

Absolutely agree! Sent many messages to CBC imploring them to bring back Bob, or at least change the current duo doing Leafs games. Bob has that flare and passion. I can't say that I mind Hughson that much, but Craig Simpson is a pain to listen to. Obvious that he hates the Leafs; why have him do the Leafs games?

February 11, 2013 / 11:44

Matt

Bob is one of my favourite announcers, right up there with Vin Scully.

I think people hate him because they hate the leafs and everything associated with the leafs.

February 11, 2013 / 12:46

Toronto Mike

@Matt

I think you're on to something. Most Leafs fans like Bob Cole. It's the Leaf-haters who associate him with the blue and white and want him to retire.

February 11, 2013 / 12:50

519 Rob

I don't know if I agree with that Mike and Matt.
I am not a Leafs fan at all, but I do like Cole's work.

Except, I STILL haven't watched any NHL hockey this year. Its my own personal lock-out.

February 11, 2013 / 13:10

Speysidephil

@Mike & Matt

Sinking to a new low in your comments:
If you can't justify your argument then attack your opposition (leaf haters).
Really!!
The only reasoning I hear from you is Bobby has a nice voice, and oh yeh he's tradition.
He is a poor excuse for an announcer of play by play hockey.Get over it.

February 11, 2013 / 13:51

Toronto Mike

@Speysidephil

You're okay if we disagree on this one, right?

February 11, 2013 / 13:54

Matt

@Speysidephil I speak from experience. All the leaf haters I know are the ones who hate Cole.

It'll be a sad sad day when Bob Cole retires.

February 11, 2013 / 14:10

No Microphone for Old Men

As I guy whose Dad worked at CBC 40-plus years, have to say it is time to end the CBC monopoly of Saturday night.
Having Cole drool over the microphone is just the most egregious offence. I cannot stand Mr. Smarmy Pants, the weatherman turned obsequious sidekick, the 70-year plus blowhard in the gaudy suits, the pathetic intermission shows. Etc.
Do you remember CBC took years to start showing the time and the score after other broadcasters, fired the one decent caster they had (Chris Cuthbert), dumped Dave Hodge and hired PJ Stock for something.
please, let TSN or SportsNet take over hockey so CBC can concentrate on the next Anne of Green Gables series

February 11, 2013 / 14:13

Speysidephil

I'm OK with that Mike.
Go Leafs Go.

February 11, 2013 / 15:02

Andrew

Hey all..

@Argie. To answer your questions there are a couple of reasons as to why that's happening. 1) Are you listening in 5.1 or stereo? If you are listening in stereo, the main reason you aren't hearing Doc is because of something called the downmix. This is when a 5.1 signal is folded into a 2.0 mix. Lots of different gear help the mixer achieve the downmix they want and it's usually provided by the network they are working for. What happens when you downmix is that the surround channels and centre channel are mixed into the L/R mix - and you can change those levels with the gear we use. Basically, the surround mix is burying the centre channel mix and that's why you can't hear the announcers.

It's the biggest complaint networks get when people listen to a show that is being down mixed from a 5.1 signal.

Some mixers tend to be aggressive with their mixes and that adds a lot of un necessary sound elements to the mix. When I down mix for the Blue Jays - I drop my surrounds by -3db and the centre channel by -3db as well. I find that's the best mix for my overall 5.1 mix.

I hope this is making sense and I'm not rambling on.

Bottom line - either the sound mixer in the TV mobile doesn't know what their doing or the master control technicians are manipulating the mix from the truck and they don't know what they're doing. It's a never ending battle that I deal with on a day to day basis at work.

If you have more questions, please feel free to ask.

FYI, Doc Emmerick is an awesome human being. I'm actually mixing the MSG Devils feed in Winnipeg next week - I wish he was still doing their play by play.

As for Bob Cole I have a biased opinion because I was one of his audio assistants in the 'booth' for over 12 years. I like Bob - I like his voice, I like his call (even with the mistakes) and he calls the game old school. Perches up on the top of his chair, takes one side of the mic headset off and cups his ear like he was doing an old radio broadcast. As an audio guy, his voice resonates on a microphone. Very little EQ, very little compression and to me that means a lot.

Everyone has their opinion on sports broadcasters. I've had the utmost pleasure (and displeasure sometimes) of working with most of the great ones over the past 18 years. I'm not going to name names, but I have my favourites for all sorts of reasons. I do miss Don Whitman immensely and I really miss working with Pierre. Like I said, I have different reasons.

I'm done rambling...

Cheers,
Andrew

February 11, 2013 / 19:41

Boomer

Andrew,
Very cool Bob Cole story!

And filed under the category of why, why, why?...PJ Stock.

February 11, 2013 / 21:41

Argie

Thanks Andrew, that helps.

I've only noticed it with the NBC games - certianinly not with TSN, CBC or any other sporting event.

February 12, 2013 / 08:32

519 Rob

I think taking Andrew out for a few drinks, and getting him to tell some stories could be incredibly interesting. But I do respect the fact that you are willing to keep some things secret.

However I'll ask this, is there one announcer that you have never worked with and would love the chance? Either because of reputation, or style, or pure respect?

February 12, 2013 / 08:47

Andrew

@Boomer - For everything that people think Bob is, I know him as a good person who loves the sport of hockey. He LOVES hockey.

@Argie - It could be the way the signal is compressed from NBC to the cable providers. TSN's feed you hear at home is exactly the same feed that I mix in the truck. Some broadcasters manipulate the final signal before it's hits the consumer. More than likely it's the way the downmix from the truck to the station to the cable provider to the home is configured. Believe me, it's a topic I get emails from people asking me all the time.

@519 Rob - oh believe me... I have some fantastic stories! There are only a select few that I will take to the grave with me, but there have been some great times over the years.

I never got the work with Danny Galivan and the guys in Montreal say he was amazing to work with. I'm not a fan of NFL football, but I would have loved to have done one game with Pat Summerall and John Madden. I think that would have been just cool!

My favourite moment in TV was from the first 6 months of leaving school and getting the chance to work on the last two weeks of Mr. Dressup. I grew up with Mr. Coombs and the chance to be in the studio when he recored his last episode of Mr. Dressup was a real honour and privilege. He was an incredibly cool dude and loved what he did.

Cheers,
Andrew

February 12, 2013 / 09:02

Argie

Andrew,

I'm sure Emerick is a good guy and all but I prefer the 'less is more' approach to broadcasting like we hear from the English soccer guys. Their command of the language is also far superior to Emerick or Cole and the others on this side of the pond.

Oh and dont me started on PJ Stock...

February 12, 2013 / 09:26

Andrew

Argie,

I can't agree or disagree with you on that. The sports North American announcers call are completely different from their European counterparts. Believe me I love the "let it breathe" phrase we use to allow the natural sound of the game to unfold. No one does it better than real football announcers.

I also really like a greatly called hockey game. Tell me something I'm not seeing. We can all see the play that's happening, but tell it to me in a way I wouldn't think about it. If you're going to talk, make sure the words count. Don't just say something because you're supposed to say something. I find that that happens a lot with the US NHL broadcasters, especially is cities where hockey is not the biggest sport. I call it a case of verbal diarrhoea.

When you aren't talking as much, you can use less words and most times, using less words gives you a better understanding of what it is you're trying to say.

Cheers!
Andrew

February 12, 2013 / 10:04

Big Len

Bob Cole is a national institution. Sitting in front of my television listening to McLean talk about the 60 years of Hockey Night In Canada. "60 years ago today" hockey night was formed.. And them we get Hughson calling the game. Should it not have been Bob Cole? 60 year anniversary and it's not Bob Cole. Foster Hewitt, Bill Hewitt , Bob Cole and now Jim Hughson?? Really CBC.

February 12, 2013 / 12:37

Il Duce

I love when Bob Cole is calling Leaf games and agree with some here that he should do the occasional Saturday Night game. Let’s face it, he’s 79 Years old.

Jim Hughson is a decent announcer and does a pretty good job calling games but he will never be adored by Leaf Fans. Not surprising but the CBC dropped the ball when they anointed Hughson and Simpson as the number one team for HNIC, which ultimately means being in Toronto every Saturday night during the season.

I find it Ironic that Hughson left Toronto years ago because he didn’t want to be here anymore and that Simpson never wanted to be drafted by the Leafs when he was eligible. Hmm… funny how things work out in life… now both, for the most part, are sitting in the ACC on a Saturday night calling Leaf games. Just another unintelligent move by the CBC.

February 13, 2013 / 08:13

felix

Mike, I think you hit the nail on the head there. If you love the Leafs, you love Bob, it's as simple as that.

I grew up listening to him, too, so it's always a pleasure when he's on the mic.

February 13, 2013 / 22:01

Luigi

Gotta say that the runs the Leafs made in 93 & 94 will always stand out in my mind and Bob Cole is one of the reasons why-his enthusiasm can't be beat. Once in a while, I still hear his shout of "GILMOURRRR! SCORRRRES!" Although the worst call of a goal was with Bob too-it was in the 96 World Cup and Canada was killing the US in a round robin game. The Americans scored near the end of the blowout and his call was: "There's one!".

February 14, 2013 / 08:11

Steve

"Over the hill," 2013 Bob Cole is still better than almost anybody else out there in their prime. What Bob Cole does you can't teach. He's an experienced, veteran voice. We don't have many guys like that anymore. Enjoy them while they're here.

February 16, 2013 / 15:14

Steve

and for those who complain about Cole calling too many details for TV as if he's on radio, I'm not sure if you've noticed, but Joe Bowen does the same thing. Has for years. It's one of the reasons I love the guy. I want my announcers to announce. Any idiot can sit there and let the picture tell the story. I want calls of the action and insight into that story.

February 16, 2013 / 15:27

shuttlesworth

YEAH, I WISH BOB COLE AND HARRY NEALE WOULD CALL LEAFS GAMES AGAIN. REMINDS ME OF THE GOOD OLD DAYS WHEN WE HAD SUNDIN, TUCKER, ROBERTS, MOGILNY, NOLAN, MCCABE, NIEUWENDYK, BELFOUR, ETC

March 3, 2013 / 01:47

chuck

don cherry bugs me more than bob cole ever willcherry is a big mouth, &maclean is his dummy, get rid of em both

March 28, 2013 / 16:26

chuck

don cherry bugs me more than bob cole ever willcherry is a big mouth, &maclean is his dummy, get rid of em both

March 28, 2013 / 16:26

James

Bob Cole needs to retire, he is always behind the play, and gets the players wrong consistently. The game has changed too much, and is too fast paced for an 80 year old. We need announcers who are concentrated and non biased.

April 20, 2013 / 20:04

Bruce

Bob is embarassing himself. He can't identify the players quickly enough and has to revert to generic phrases like 'the Sens break out and dump it in for the Sens to chase'. Tonight he couldn't even figure out if there was more or less than half of the period left. Do what I did again... write a quick note to cbc sports and tell them its time for Bob to retire gracefully$

April 20, 2013 / 22:06

Scott

I've listened to Bob Cole my entire life. To me he is an essential spoke in that Maple Leaf wheel and deserves the call until he retires or god forbid dies. No offense to Jim Hughson, who does call a good game, just doesn't have that East Coast lustre. The lateral move to Montreal is a disgrace to a distinguished career.

April 21, 2013 / 12:28

Baron

Bob Cole is the reason I stopped watching hockey. He has always been terrible and it is astounding how little he knows about the game he has covered for 100s of years. I check in occasionally and if Cole is calling the game I am outa there because it infuriates me that CBC doesn't find somebody better.

April 24, 2013 / 17:09

Rook

Keep him for Toronto games if some Leaf fans like him, but he should NEVER announce Sens games. This guy is so confusing... it sometimes seems like he's watching a different game.

May 2, 2013 / 23:04

Toronto Mike

I'd love to trade you Hughson for Cole. I'd do it in a heartbeat.

May 2, 2013 / 23:05

Mike

Couldn't disagree more. Just like you pleaded with CBC to bring him back... Many many many more of us pleaded to never have him call a game, we petitioned for years. Since I was a little kid (30 now) we turned down the volume on CBC to get rid of bob and turn up joe bowen. Cbc's hnic is a joke, without Ron and Don there'd be no reason to have sound on they're broadcast. Cuthbert is the best politically correct, but Joe Bowen is a toronto legend.

May 5, 2013 / 13:26

Mike

So he has a nice voice? Or he's a tradition? I don't see his value to anyone. I grew up playing hockey in toronto, I eat sleep and breath hockey. Bob doesn't understand hockey, never has. I love the leafs to my core, I share the same passion in how much I hate bob. If any of you actually played the game you'd know how lost he his and always has been. We won this argument years ago when the outcry from leafs nation finally got rid of him on Saturday. We worked hard for that, and the suffering thru his drivel every night, my god! Thankfully it's over, this isn't up for debate anymore. The anti-cole side won this debate a few years ago, game over cole lovers, just drop it.

May 5, 2013 / 13:40

Moedog

Why in the name of god is this man still broadcasting hockey games.He really doesn't do play by play.He is so far behind the play he just comments on the game not what's happening at the time.What really irks me is that he was a Leafs homer for 30 years and now that he is washed up the CBC sends him to do Habs and Sens games.Surely it's time to retire.Surely...it's time to retire!!

May 13, 2013 / 17:02

Anonymous

I don't know who I passionately dislike more, Bob Cole or Pierre McGuire, with Mike Emrick being close to joining this irritating group of broadcasters.
Cole isn't folksy, he's senile and out to lunch. CBC could save money by recording his play by play from the first game of the season and then just replay it for every game during the rest of the season. He calls the obvious.....how many times do I need to be reminded there is 2 minutes and 48 seconds left in the period or have to be reminded that the score is 2 to 1. With him on, I can't hit the mute button fast enough.

May 15, 2013 / 21:32

Gundylake

Bob Cole is symbolic of CBC, totally useless. He doesn't call the game. He just babbles as the play goes on.
Fire the old f@rt!!!

May 25, 2013 / 23:15

Johnny

Today's generation likes to toss anything older than 6 months' into the gash. Bob is like Foster did. Calls it like it is supposed to. Jim Hughson and company makes me gag. Statistics aka baseball ain't Canadian and any Army boy will tell you that "Statistics are for losers". Hockey players don't want to hear what line they are on as a number. A good team has four "1st lines". Going on about a players ice time (as another statistic) is getting tired too. Perhaps if Chara was on less, the Bruins would have had more Dee with stronger legs Are ya geting yet? In Canada we don't worship hockey players why? Because we all knew/know, if buddy gets hurt, we are all close to being able to step out and take over..lol. That's right. You heard me. So get off the American style bullshite. Bring back Dave Hodge and Bob Cole. We don't need a whole desk of wannabe worshiping hockey mouthpieces. Remember who is controlling TV. Thats the problem.

June 24, 2013 / 23:56

mike Moriarty

I also loved Bob's broadcast of last night's Hab's/ leafs game. There are 3 iconic hockey broadcasters Danny Gallivan, Bill Hewitt, and Bob Cole. honorary mention to Mike Emrich. I'm a Michigander who grew up watching Hockey Night in Canada. CKLW out of Windsor. That was tuning into to Bill and Danny from late 50's till Bill and Danny left. For the love of God, keep Bob Cole going. He's great!!! Mike Moriarty

January 12, 2014 / 18:31

Anonymous

Bob Cole brings something to the broadcast no one else does...dementia.

May 5, 2014 / 20:47

Wayne McCrae

Bob Cole should be a leaf announcer and nothing more. He is so obviuosly biased when announcing. Let Leaf TV hire him and/or Leaf radio. Great voice for hockey but only Leafs.

May 13, 2014 / 11:58

Toronto Mike

@Wayne McCrae

He's been fantastic during this Penguins - Rangers series.

May 13, 2014 / 13:22

sphillier

First off, it could be easily argued that play-by-play in the era of large screen hi-def television is superfluous. I can see what's going on, don't need anyone to tell me as well. Play-by-play on TV was really an extension of radio, where you relied on the announcer telling you what was happening with some degree of accuracy. When TV then first became a household item, they were small and fuzzy, and you still needed help picking out one blob from another, hence the announcer.

If play-by-play announcers are going to continue being used, they become less important for telling you the facts about a game, and more important for conveying the emotion of a game. Anyone who has been to a live sporting event will tell you that is one of the huge differences from watching it on TV.

That being said, no one emotes like Bob Cole. Bob Cole could read the phone book during the game, and as long as he gets excited at the right moments he's adding to the viewing experience. I'd say the same for Joe Bowen's TV broadcasts, though in support of my argument, he needs to be able to accurately call the play on radio and does so very well.

Conversely, we could do away with play-by-play altogether, much like the Olympic hockey feeds that were streamed online earlier this year. If the rink and the crowd are mic'ed correctly, that could be quite immersive as well.

May 29, 2014 / 09:47

Bill

My wife and I want to see Bob Cole back where he belongs, calling Leaf games!

November 1, 2014 / 22:06

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