The Sochi Olympics are just a few days old, but we may have already met our breakout star of the games – NBC cross country skiing and biathlon analyst Chad Salmela. The analyst was a member of the US National team in the biathlon and serves as varsity cross country skiing coach at The College of St. Scholastica at his day job. And even though this is his fourth Olympics working for NBC, he's gaining extra attention for his calls at the end of races this year that are earning him comparisons to Gus Johnson.
Here Salmela is calling the 30k skiathlon with an exploding-brain-matter level of enthusiasm. He calls the stretch run shouting over Al Trautwig and hardly being able to contain his excitement. Although NBC won't make the clip available for embed (boo), you really need to check out the link as it's a highlight of the Olympics thus far. Chad Salmela is to the Winter Olympics what Rowdy Gaines is to the Summer Olympics.
Although not many people watching the Winter Olympics may know his name, Salmela is certainly adding an extra bit of an excitement to the cross country skiing events…
The Skiathlon announcer is my new favorite. He couldn't breathe he was so excited for the last 3 minutes!!
— Kaci Bramhall (@k_brammy) February 9, 2014
This skiathlon announcer has been scream-announcing this event and I am loving every second of it.
— Kerry Trunfio (@kerrylowell) February 9, 2014
Gus Johnson thinks this skiathlon announcer is too excited.
— David Cameron (@DCameronFG) February 9, 2014
— Peyton's Head (@PeytonsHead) February 9, 2014
— Nathan Pickel (@NPickel87) February 9, 2014
The skiathlon announcer is effing awesome.
— Erika Niedowski (@eniedowski) February 9, 2014
"All big names! All big players!" I'll have to take your word for it, skiathlon announcer yelling at me.
— Amanda Rykoff (@amandarykoff) February 9, 2014
Man, that announcer for skiathlon should get a medal.
— Ryan Bowman (@ybits) February 9, 2014
The Olympics aren't just a spotlight for athletes every four years, they're great opportunities for the announcers that are dedicated to these sports as well. Now I'm going to have to make sure to DVR the cross country skiing events along with any curling.