A Sportsnet Jets-Flames tweet.

It’s certainly not unprecedented for a broadcast to lose its play-by-play announcer and analyst. Sometimes an analyst or sideline reporter has to fill in on play-by-play, and sometimes all commentary is gone. The latter is what appears to have happened for quite a while during Sportsnet‘s Canadian broadcast of the Winnipeg Jets and Calgary Flames Monday (with Rick Ball on play-by-play and Kelly Hrudey on analysis). And that, interestingly enough, let to a number of comments praising the resulting inadvertent announcerless feed:

Obviously, a few comments on Twitter aren’t an indication that “all viewers would prefer a feed with no announcers.” Most people do want traditional announcing feeds, and this shouldn’t be read into too much. And it’s notable that for this, as with most sporting broadcasts, most of the actual audience is probably not talking about it on Twitter.

And, beyond that, even some of these comments spell out that this is fine as a change-of-pace rather than a strategy. And one of the above comments even spells out support for these specific announcers. So this isn’t necessary even “These announcers are particularly bad”; both Ball and Hrudey have long NHL announcing backgrounds, and while both have critics, they also have plenty of supporters. Still, it is unusual to see an announcing feed go down, and to see the majority of the comments not be “What happened?! Get it back!” There isn’t necessarily a bigger takeaway from that, but that was an interesting reaction.

About Andrew Bucholtz

Andrew Bucholtz has been covering sports media for Awful Announcing since 2012. He is also a staff writer for The Comeback. His previous work includes time at Yahoo! Sports Canada and Black Press.