The long-time TV color analyst for the Vancouver Canucks is moving away from that role. That would be veteran hockey broadcaster John Garrett, who’s been broadcasting NHL games in general since 1986, and has been the primary TV analyst on the Canucks’ Sportsnet Pacific regional broadcasts since the 2002-03 season. As Garrett announced on the broadcast of the Canucks’ win over the San Jose Sharks Thursday night, he’ll continue to contribute to some Sportsnet properties, but this soon-ending season (the Canucks’ last regular-season game is April 13) will be his last as the primary game analyst.
— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) March 24, 2023
“Since 2002, I’ve had the privilege and honor to be the analyst on the regional Sportsnet Canucks’ broadcasts. This season will be my final time filling that role, even though I will appear on some other Sportsnet properties. If you’ve been watching and listening for all these years, you know how much I have enjoyed my experience and the time doing this job. And a lot of the reason the great people I work with. The Sportsnet Pacific crew doesn’t have an equal in the business. No matter what the situation, no matter what the time of day or night, they make you feel like you’re in the building.”
“I’d like to thank [play-by-play voice] John Shorthouse, [reporter] Dan Murphy, and our producer, Greg Shannon. Your camaraderie and friendship will never be forgotten, and we will be lifelong friends. But most of all, I’d like to thank the fans, whose unwavering support has lasted for these 20 years and beyond. Your enthusiasm and passion for the game, and for this team, will never be forgotten. We are all Canucks. Thanks.”
That’s a nice farewell from Garrett. And it’s notable that he’ll be continuing his broadcasting career in some fashion. Garrett started broadcasting in 1986 following a 1971-1985 playing career as a WHA and NHL goalie, working nationally for CBC and locally for the Edmonton Oilers at first. He left CBC for the then-CTV Sportsnet in 1998, working on Calgary Flames’ broadcasts and national broadcasts at first, and has stuck with that company since, switching to the Canucks’ TV role in 2002. And he made a massive impact on many Canucks’ fans and on media colleagues, as can be seen in some of the tributes that have been posted to him:
Hail to our king John Garrett. It won't be the same without you. You brought a natural charm and charisma that is a much needed commodity in sports and I always looked forward to any game you were a part of calling. pic.twitter.com/cKnz7PvqpD
— Wyatt Arndt (@TheStanchion) March 24, 2023
John Garrett is one of the kindest people I've met in my five years on the beat.
Always happy to see you, always happy to tell a story, even if he'd told it a hundred times. Always ready to give a bit of 'here's what they're thinking' insight.
We'll always have his hockey card. pic.twitter.com/2bJ9fg6NDe
— Patrick Johnston (@risingaction) March 24, 2023
I am in shock as John Garrett announces this will be his last season doing Canuck regional games. Honestly, I love watching this broadcast crew.
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) March 24, 2023
lots of people in this business lose interest or energy or both and it comes across in their work. The biggest compliment I can give John Garrett is that despite a less than impressive product to describe on many nights over the last decade he has brought it EVERY SINGLE NIGHT
— Jeff Paterson (@patersonjeff) March 24, 2023
In a sport that continues to search for personality, John Garrett has been one of the best in hockey. Despite his solid credentials, Cheech never took himself too seriously, which allowed for debate, fun, and entertainment. Kudos to a total pro.
— James Cybulski (@JamesCybulski) March 24, 2023
I did my first ever @hockeynight broadcast 30 years ago at the Forum. PXP was Dick Irvin & colour was John Garrett. Two legends & totally supportive of the rookie. Thanks @SNJohnGarrett for that & everything since. Funny, blunt & wise. Congratulations Cheech! https://t.co/mfnKJ4olB4
— Tom Harrington (@cbctom) March 24, 2023
Wrote the book on being a great teammate and how to eat without cutlery for an entire playoff run. Hall of Fame guy! https://t.co/4GbFILdUBm
— Chris Cuthbert (@CCpxpSN) March 24, 2023
John Garrett announces this is his last season in the booth for the Canucks regional broadcasts.
I love listening to this broadcast crew. What a run, Cheech.
— Caroline Cameron (@SNCaroline) March 24, 2023
John Garrett rules, full stop. Will really miss hearing him on the broadcasts. https://t.co/UwPSnCwYi7
— Justin Bourne (@jtbourne) March 24, 2023
As a kid, before the expansion TV access of games.
— Moe Khan (@MoeKhan19) March 24, 2023
Garrett always brought insight, analysis, and a sense of humor to his role. And he had some good lines:
— Chris Cuthbert (@CCpxpSN) March 24, 2023
Garrett also drew a lot of attention over the years for his love of ketchup, and many brought that up:
A #Canucks broadcast without John Garrett is like John Garrett eating something without slathering it in ketchup. It's just not right.
Garrett announced Thursday he will no longer be the colour commentator on regional Canucks broadcasts after this season. https://t.co/PCPipliANE
— Daniel Wagner (@passittobulis) March 24, 2023
how will I be able to watch hockey without john garrett telling me what he put ketchup on today ?
— God™(jeep) (@RileyMiner) March 24, 2023
OK I figured it out. The truth is Sportsnet can’t renew John Garrett’s contract because he went over his Ketchup budget for decades ! pic.twitter.com/s50EjjKNxm
— Canuck17a (@Canuck17a) March 24, 2023
We wish Garrett all the best in his new role. Hopefully there will be plenty of ketchup ahead for him.
[Sportsnet on Twitter]