Sam Rosen
Born
Samuel Rosenblum

(1947-08-12) August 12, 1947 (age 76)
Ulm, Germany
OccupationSportscaster
SpouseJill L. Eisenberg
ChildrenMatthew Rosen
Garrett Rosen

Sam Rosen (born Samuel Rosenblum, August 12, 1947)[1] is a German-born American sportscaster and Hockey Hall of Famer, best known as the primary play-by-play announcer for the National Hockey League's New York Rangers games on MSG.[2] On June 8, 2008, Rosen was inducted into the National Jewish Sports Hall of Fame. On November 14, 2016, Rosen was enshrined as the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award winner for outstanding contributions as a broadcaster by the Hockey Hall of Fame.[3] Rosen is currently the longest-tenured active broadcaster in the NHL.

Rosen's current responsibilities include Rangers telecasts and Sunday NFL games for Fox. He is paired with Joe Micheletti on Rangers broadcasts, and Charles Davis, among others, on national Fox broadcasts.

Early history

Rosen was born Samuel Rosenblum in Ulm, Germany, to Polish parents Louis Rosenblum (1915–1987) and the former Gitel Reiner (1915–2006) of Jewish descent just after World War II. His mother was born in Chełm, Poland. The Rosenblum family moved to Brooklyn, New York, when Rosen was 2 years old. As a New York Yankees fan, Rosen became a fan of their broadcaster Mel Allen. Rosen attended Stuyvesant High School and the City College of New York. At both schools, Rosen played catcher and was the captain of the baseball team.[4] Rosen also played intramural basketball, and was on the track team in high school. Rosen grew up with an older brother, Stephen.

Broadcasting career

New York Rangers

From childhood on, Rosen attended numerous New York Rangers games and taped himself doing play-by-play.[2] He was mentored by veteran Rangers broadcaster Jim Gordon, eventually succeeding him in the fall of 1984.[4] From 1982-1984, he was the studio host on Ranger broadcasts. Rosen's first partner was ex-Bruin and Ranger star Phil Esposito.[5][6] Starting in 1986–87, when Esposito left to become Rangers general manager, Rosen was paired with former Rangers goaltender John Davidson (nicknamed J.D.). Together, Sam and J.D. lasted 20 years together, the longest-serving NHL broadcast team, before Davidson left for a management position with the St. Louis Blues[7] and later with the Columbus Blue Jackets[8][9] Davidson returned to take over duties as the President of the Rangers on May 17, 2019[10][11] and return to Columbus on May 20, 2021.[12]

Beginning with the 2006–07 NHL season, Rosen partnered with Joe Micheletti,[13] who was New York Islanders TV color analyst with former Rangers radio announcer Howie Rose on Fox Sports Net New York.

Rosen's most famous call comes every time the Rangers score a goal on the power play. The call is simply the name of the player, followed by, "It's a power play goal!", but Rosen uses a unique inflection which has been widely popular among Rangers fans and a staple of any Rangers broadcast.

However, his two most memorable calls came during the Rangers run to the first Stanley Cup in 54 years. First, he called Stéphane Matteau's double overtime goal in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals with:[14]

Matteau moves with the puck. Matteau around the net. Matteau puts it, Score! Score! The Rangers win! The Rangers win! They're going to the Finals! The Rangers win!"[15]

Then when the Rangers won the Stanley Cup, the highest-rated game in MSG Network history:[14]

The waiting is over! The New York Rangers are the Stanley Cup Champions! And this one will last a lifetime!"

He was recognized before the Rangers-Islanders game on January 31, 2014, for thirty years of service with the MSG Network. They did a special called "This One Will Last a Lifetime: 30 Years of Sam Rosen", which was announced at intermission as a present to him by longtime partner and longtime friend John Davidson.[16]

Rosen has been told by the Rangers he can continue his position as long as he wishes. He has asked his family to inform him if they feel he is losing his edge due to age but is encouraged that Los Angeles Dodgers play-by-play announcer Vin Scully was still considered a top broadcaster when he retired at age 88.[4] He also called national Rangers game on radio.[17][18]

Other broadcasting areas

While still in college Rosen worked in the news department at WINS.[4]

Before taking the Rangers play-by-play job in 1984, Rosen also served as a studio host for New York Knicks basketball telecasts on MSG. By 1975, he was a full-time sportscaster for United Press International's 1000-station radio network ("UPI Audio") and was appointed its Sports Director in 1979. He not only worked a daily morning shift beginning with a 5:45 AM sportscast, but also assigned coverage by UPI's stringers at games in every city with a major league sports franchise, and supervised two junior sportscasters. The first hire he had a hand in was a 20-year-old with no previous full-time professional experience, named Keith Olbermann.

While at UPI, Rosen traveled to and covered most major sporting events, from the Super Bowl to the World Series. The duo covered the 1980 Winter Olympics for UPI, and between them reported all the breaking news coverage and produced a half-hour special report, when Yankees catcher and captain Thurman Munson was killed in a plane crash in August 1979.[19][20] Even though the UPI position was a full-time responsibility, while he held it Rosen continued his other part-time positions: back-up voice of the Rangers and Knicks on radio and television, Cosmos soccer play-by-play announcer and weekend news anchor on WNEW-AM radio, and spot television boxing assignments for ESPN and USA Network. Olbermann claimed that when he worked for him Rosen held as many as 11 different jobs, while Rosen says he didn't think it was that many but admitted he worked so often that he could easily have forgotten some of them. He left UPI in 1981 when his ESPN workload and compensation became a living wage by itself.

Rosen was employed by ESPN from 1979 to 1988, calling a variety of sports for the network including hockey,[21][22][23] college football, boxing,[24] table tennis, Australian rules football, college baseball,[25] collegiate wrestling, and NASL soccer.[26]

He handled play-by-play for NHL Radio, a partnership between the NHL and Westwood One. He has called the Stanley Cup playoffs on the radio for many years, as well as the 2002 and 2006 Winter Olympic Men's Hockey Tournaments. In addition, he has also worked for Versus (now the NBC Sports Network) calling games in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs and 12 Stanley Cup Finals on NHL Radio from 1996 to 2008.[2]

Rosen has also been a play-by-play announcer for NFL on Fox since 1996. Rosen also called preseason NFL games for the Chicago Bears from 2009 to 2017, when he was replaced by Adam Amin, and previously did this for the New York Giants for several seasons. His broadcasting partners have included Heath Evans, Kirk Morrison, Ron Pitts, Ray Bentley, Jerry Glanville, Tim Green, Brady Quinn, Matt Millen, Bill Maas, Brian Billick, Tim Ryan, Ronde Barber, Chad Pennington, Daryl Johnston, Cris Carter, John Lynch and Charles Davis.

Rosen was also the lead boxing announcer for the MSG Network until 1993. In 1989, he won the Sam Taub Award for excellence in boxing broadcasting journalism.[27]

Rosen was also a radio play-by-play announcer for the New York Cosmos. His call "It's a Cosmos Goal" predated and could be considered as the basis for his trademark power play call.

References

  1. ^ Sprechman, Jordan; Shannon, Bill (1998), This Day in New York Sports, Sports Publishing LLC, p. 225, ISBN 978-1-57167-254-4, retrieved August 12, 2010
  2. ^ a b c "Sam Rosen Archives". MSGNetworks.com. Retrieved October 10, 2023.
  3. ^ Rosen, Dan. "Hall of Fame honor will last a lifetime for Sam Rosen".
  4. ^ a b c d Best, Neil (October 11, 2013). "Waiting may be over, but Sam Rosen continues to last with Rangers". Newsday. Retrieved November 2, 2013.
  5. ^ Chad, Norman (April 22, 1988). "ESPN, HOME TEAM SPORTS COOL ON ICE". Washington Post. Retrieved April 17, 2020.
  6. ^ "SPORTS PEOPLE; Esposito's Blessings". The New York Times. April 21, 1988. p. B16. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved October 10, 2023.
  7. ^ Sandomir, Richard (July 5, 2006). "Davidson Gets His Chance to Run a Team". Retrieved August 16, 2023.
  8. ^ Sandomir, Richard (June 16, 1994). "TV SPORTS; Albert Bobs but He Doesn't Bend (Published 1994)". New York Times. p. B12. Retrieved August 16, 2023.
  9. ^ Kalinsky, George (2004). Garden of Dreams. New York: Stewart, Tabori, & Chang. ISBN 1-58479-343-0.
  10. ^ "John Davidson Returning to Rangers to Be Team President". New York Times. Associated Press. May 17, 2019. Retrieved August 17, 2023.
  11. ^ Kreda, Allan (May 23, 2019). "Back With the Rangers, John Davidson Has Unfinished Business (Published 2019)". New York Times. Retrieved August 17, 2023.
  12. ^ Whyno, Stephen (May 20, 2021). "Davidson returns to Blue Jackets as president of hockey ops". AP News. Retrieved August 17, 2023.
  13. ^ Forde, Mike (September 13, 2006). "MICHELETTI TO DO RANGER TV". New York Post. Retrieved August 17, 2023.
  14. ^ a b Conroy, Thomas (August 28, 2019). "Rangers 1994 Stanley Cup Win Has Lasted a Lifetime". The Hockey Writers. Retrieved August 22, 2023.
  15. ^ New York Rangers Hockey: Game 7 of Eastern Conference Finals (television). MSG Network. May 27, 1994.
  16. ^ "MSG to honor Sam Rosen - Blue Seat Blogs". blueseatblogs.com. December 13, 2013. Retrieved October 10, 2023.
  17. ^ DeLessio, Joe (June 7, 2022). "Legendary Rangers Announcer Sam Rosen on the Team's Incredible Playoff Run". Intelligencer. Retrieved October 10, 2023.
  18. ^ "Sam Rosen to call Rangers vs. Lightning on ESPN New York Radio". Newsday. June 1, 2022. Retrieved October 10, 2023.
  19. ^ Naughton, Jim (August 3, 1979). "Yankees' Thurman Munson Killed Piloting His Own Small Jet in Ohio". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved October 10, 2023.
  20. ^ Futterman, Derek (December 28, 2022). "MSG Networks Pairing of Sam Rosen, Joe Micheletti Is Music to Rangers Fans Ears | Barrett Media". barrettsportsmedia.com. Retrieved October 10, 2023.
  21. ^ Sarni, Jim (October 10, 1985). "ESPN BREAKS THE ICE FOR SPORTS FANS WITH CAPS-RANGERS GAME THURSDAY". Sun-Sentinel. Retrieved February 9, 2016.
  22. ^ Archives, L. A. Times (September 20, 1985). "Stockton, Walker Get a Break as Big Call Goes Their Way". Los Angeles Times. p. 3. Retrieved October 10, 2023.
  23. ^ By (February 7, 1986). "NHL ALL-STAR TELECAST FAILS TO WIN VIEWERS". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved October 10, 2023.
  24. ^ By (May 13, 1986). "ESPN'S BERNSTEIN WON'T GO DOWN WITHOUT A FIGHT". Sun Sentinel. Retrieved October 12, 2023.
  25. ^ By (June 3, 1988). "STATIONS MUST PULL DOUBLE DUTY AT CWS". Sun Sentinel. Retrieved October 12, 2023.
  26. ^ 1982 05 22 SAN DIEGO SOCKERS AT MONTREAL MANIC NASL on YouTube
  27. ^ International Boxing Hall of Fame / BWAA Awards Archived June 17, 2008, at the Wayback Machine. ibhof.com
Preceded byDan Kelly Stanley Cup Finals American network television play-by-play announcer 1986 (with Ken Wilson; Rosen called Games 1-2) Succeeded byMike Emrick