Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Another loonie has to go in the play-nice jar

The fallout from the Windsor Spitfires ditching their veteran play-by-play announcer, Steve Bell, is a perfect opportunity to pay the Kingston Frontenacs a left-handed compliment.

Fronts owner Doug Springer and GM-for-life Larry Mavety have their faults, but they've been smart enough to keep Jim Gilchrist on as the team's radio voice. The Frontenacs could be 4-45-1 in the dead of January and it would still be worth tuning into the team's broadcasts to hear Gilchrist. Granted, the risk of saying that is that with the Frontenacs, there's always a chance that might happen.

Now, those wacky diehards at Fronts Talk, what are you gonna do? First they seized on talk that former Fronts coach Dave Allison, who was with AHL's Iowa Stars last season, had bought a home in Kingston, and now they're trying to jump to conclusions after noting that his name no longer appears on the team's website. (Iowa is now the Anaheim Ducks' affiliate -- think that will motivate MTV to move The Hills there?)

Don't get carried away thinking anyone other than The Mav is behind the bench in September.


Tyler King said...

Gilchrist does a solid job narrating play, but the problem is that the Fronts broadcasts are horribly bare-bones. Lite 104 point whatever does next to nothing to support the broadcasts. No real pregame or postgame to speak of, they just play syndicated recorded bits during intermissions and have some in-studio schmuck do an out of town scoreboard (usually with tons of stumbling and mispronounciations), and with no colour man for away games he's forced to fill time with awkward silences or endlessly repeating the score.

It can oftentimes come off as a dull broadcast even though it really shouldn't.

Not sure if you know this, Neate, but the "broadcast booth" at the K-Rock Centre is really just another luxury box that they stuck the broadcasters in, so there's no dividing walls or anything between the broadcasts. As a result you can hear Gilchrist in the background of the Cogeco play-by-play, and vice versa. State of the art, eh?

sager said...

Yes, it would have been state-of-the-art ... in 1988.

Jeff Stilwell, the Frontenacs PR man, has been heard to boast about how the press box in the new place had room for 25 working media. That begs the question of what would ever bring 25 reporters to Kingston to cover hockey, unless they bring in something like the World Under-17 Challenge. I'd like to see that event come to Kingston. You could play some early-round games in Belleville.

Tyler King said...

I think the press box and broadcast booth are separate.

Room for 25, eh? Makes it less justifiable that they kept ignoring my requests for a press pass... (they gave us ones at the M Centre and then just stopped answering emails after the move)

Duane Rollins said...


Go through the CHL.

Jordie Dwyer said...

Wow...a soccer/CIS sports guy as the voice of reason in a hockey, what's this world coming to...oh, right, it's Kingston...sorry, move along nothing to see here

sager said...

Easy on the Frontenacs. Every team is entitled to a bad decade or two.