Sports commentators

I think I may have been one of the few football fans in the USA to rejoice earlier this year when John Madden’s retirement was announced. I hated listening to him; his congested voice was like nails on a chalk board, his "me me me" stories were recycled and pedantic, and his egregious overuse of the tele-pen drove me crazy.  I watched MNF with the sound muted because he got on my nerves so much.

I understand that commentators are supposed to be conveying the excitement of the game/match, but sometimes they seem to love the sound of their own voices more than the game.  And they don’t understand that sometimes, silence really is golden; just let the sounds of the game tell the story.  Fans don’t need to be spoon fed.

The tennis equivalent (for me) is John McEnroe.  As I watch, I just want to scream JFC, stop telling anecdotes about your playing days; talk about the match in front of you. 

Also, please use proper English.  He did not play phenomenal; he played phenomenally.

I really think I prefer the relative silence of Jason Goodall and Robbie Koenig.  Or the Spanish announcers who’ve called a couple of matches I’ve watched on Youtube.



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5 responses to “Sports commentators

  1. Madden for you is like Vitale for me. I will mute the TV before listening to him yell yell yell.
    But the worst for me always ends up being the Olympics. No matter who is commentating, I just end up thinking Shut up, Shut up, Shut up!! at the TV.

    • Oh, Vitale. He’s part of the reason I’ve never watched much basketball.
      The commentating (commenting?) during the different events of the Olympics varies for me. But during the opening ceremonies for Beijing, Bob Costas seemed to stick his foot in his mouth every few minutes…and he wasn’t even talking about sports particularly! I shudder to think of how bad his coverage of the specific sporting events would have been.

  2. Anonymous

    Not a huge sports-fan myself, but my better half is, and I can go absolutely crazy listening to some of those commentators. And sometimes it is a mix between the actual SOUND of their voice plus the nonsense they are saying, that REALLY can tick me off 😉

  3. And Scott Hamilton for figure skating. Just shut up and let them skate!

  4. Anonymous

    Sadly I have no clue who commentates the hockey up here but his voice is very soothing to me. Probably because I recognize his voice from my childhood when my Dad would listen to the game in the car. He never shows a bias and I love his ‘goal’ or ‘they score’ yell. He strictly commentates the game and there are breaks where there are silences (I always imagine him trying to read the jersey of the guy with the puck at those times).
    The first time I ever went to watch live hockey I was surprised I couldn’t hear the guys voice. Uh, yeah. They don’t commentate at the game – talk about a let down. I couldn’t see any of the jerseries from my nose bleed section so I sure wasn’t going to know what was going on.
    I’ve decided watching sports on TV is always better. I get to yell and agree or dis-agree with the commentator very loudly. Hubby still can’t believe how involved I’ll get with a game of hockey.

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