Tragic Death Strikes The Hockey World

Published August 17, 2023 at 10:42 PM

The hockey world mourns the loss of an icon as Rick Jeanneret, the legendary play-by-play voice of the Buffalo Sabres, passed away on Thursday night, a somber announcement made by the Sabres organization.

Celebrating his 81st birthday on July 23, the exact cause of his passing remains undisclosed.

Jeanneret's indelible mark was etched over his remarkable 51-year tenure, during which he not only narrated the games but became synonymous with the Sabres themselves.

Renowned for his exuberant style and unforgettable calls during crucial goals and intense fights, Jeanneret's impact reverberated across NHL highlights throughout North America. His iconic phrases, like the unforgettable "May Day, May Day" call during Brad May's game-winning playoff goal in 1993, have become part of hockey lore. That unforgettable moment marked the end of Buffalo's decade-long playoff drought.

Starting as a radio broadcast analyst back in the 1971-72 NHL season, Jeanneret formed an iconic play-by-play tandem with Ted Darling, the voice of the Sabres for years. Transitioning to full-time television broadcasting in 1995, he later expanded his reach by simulcasting on both radio and TV, sharing the booth with esteemed partners such as Jim Lorentz, Harry Neale, and Rob Ray.

As his broadcasting responsibilities gradually lessened in his final years, the torch was passed to his eventual successor, Dan Dunleavy, who took on more significant roles. The 2021-22 season marked Jeanneret's farewell to the NHL, aptly named "RJ's Last Call." This poignant chapter was celebrated with a year-long highlight reel that played during broadcasts, commemorating his legacy as a voice that will forever echo through the history of hockey.

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