One of the NHL’s longest-tenured and most-respected announcers is battling cancer. The Dallas Stars announced Monday that Dave Strader, who took over TV play-by-play duties for them this past season following Ralph Strangis’ retirement, has been diagnosed with cancer.
The Stars’ booth of Strader and Daryl Reaugh placed third in our local announcer rankings this year, which says a lot about how much Strader is liked locally despite being new to the team, but he’s also well-known throughout the league thanks to his 36 years covering hockey, working with the Detroit Red Wings, Florida Panthers and Phoenix Coyotes in addition to the Stars, He also spent decades working national games for ESPN, ABC, Fox and Versus/NBCSN. Here’s more from the Stars’ statement:
“The Dallas Stars are deeply saddened to learn of Dave Strader’s cancer diagnosis. As he goes through his treatment, all of our thoughts and prayers are directed to Dave, his wife Colleen, their son Christopher and his wife Karen and daughter Sydney, their son Casey and his wife Dr. Mary, and their son Trevor. We wish Dave a full recovery and will support him through his battle.
“Dave’s work in both local markets and on the national stage have made his voice synonymous with hockey to fans all over the globe in his 36 years in the booth. We know that he’s touched a lot of people throughout his career thus far and those wanting to send well-wishes are encouraged to send Dave a note at WellWishesForStrader@dallasstars.com.”
Support for Strader has already started to pour in from hockey fans, media, and colleagues on Twitter:
This is horrible news. BOL to Dave. Guy is insanely good at his job. https://t.co/CUFS0VOvc6
— Travis Yost (@travisyost) June 13, 2016
— Daryl Reaugh (@Razor5Hole) June 13, 2016
— Joe Yerdon (@JoeYerdon) June 13, 2016
— John Shannon (@JSportsnet) June 13, 2016
All my warmest thoughts to Dave Strader and his family. Scary news regarding one of the game's class acts and great broadcasters.
— Jon Rosen (@lakingsinsider) June 13, 2016
A couple years back Dave Strader called a Dartmouth/RPI game on NBCSN and was top-5 nicest guys I ever met. Good luck to him in his battle.
— Dartmouth Hockey (@Dartmouth_MIH) June 13, 2016
If character and kindness help a man in this kind of fight, Dave Strader is going to beat this by a mile. We're behind you Dave.
— Steve Cangialosi (@CangyManMSG) June 13, 2016
For his part, Strader has already thanked fans for their support, and said he’ll look to Bekki Nill (the wife of Stars’ GM Jim Nill, she’s been battling cancer for five years despite initially being given two months to live) for inspiration:
“I realize I have a challenge and fight ahead of me. With my wife Colleen and our family, along with the full support of the Dallas Stars organization, we are ready to meet this challenge. We don’t have to look very far for inspiration as Bekki Nill has shown us all how to meet this dreaded disease head-on. Personally, her example will serve as a great guide. I want to thank everyone for their support as I proceed with treatment.”
All of us at Awful Announcing extend our best wishes to Strader in this fight.