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Blackhawks announce Rick Ball as team's new play-by-play announcer

Blackhawks announce Rick Ball as team's new play-by-play announcer

Blackhawks announce Rick Ball as team's new play-by-play announcer originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago

The Blackhawks announced Rick Ball as the team's new play-by-play announcer for the 2024 season.

Ball, 57, will join analyst and former Hawks goalie Darren Pang on the new broadcast hosted by first-year RSN Chicago Sports Network in October.

Ball joins the Blackhawks after serving as the Calgary Flames' play-by-play announcer for the last 10 years. He has also called national broadcasts of "Hockey Night in Canada" since 2011 and has been an announcer on the show since 2013.

“We are delighted to have Rick join the Blackhawks broadcast booth alongside Darren Pang as we begin this exciting new chapter in Blackhawks television with our new broadcast venture, Chicago Sports Network,” President of Business Operations Jaime Faulkner said in a press release. “An established voice in the hockey world, Rick brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to our broadcasts. Coupled with Darren’s exceptional energy and expertise, we believe we are providing Blackhawks fans with the best in-home watching experience in the NHL."

Ball will replace Chris Vosters, the Blackhawks play-by-play announcer since April 2022. Vosters succeeded legendary Hall of Fame broadcaster Pat Foley, who left impossible shoes to fill after serving as the main Blackhawks play-by-play broadcaster for 14 years from 2008-22.

Vosters came from an all-encompassing background in sports broadcasting that wasn't entirely centered on hockey. He started in the industry calling minor league baseball games, high school football and basketball. He had also covered three Olympic games before landing the gig with the Blackhawks.

To his credit, Vosters had previously called college hockey games with the Big Ten Network, appearing on broadcasts for the 2019 Frozen Four and Hockey Day Minnesota on Bally Sports.

“We would also like to thank Chris Vosters for his time as play-by-play announcer, and we look forward to continuing discussions surrounding opportunities with our new network. Chris is a phenomenal broadcaster with a big career ahead of him, and we are excited for him to continue to showcase his immense talent through his content with Stadium as well as his broadcasting work with other national, multi-sport entities,” Faulkner said

Ball made the tough decision to move to Chicago from his native land in Canada. But his appreciation for the Blackhawks franchise and partnering with Pang helped drive his decision to make the lateral.

“I am thrilled to join the Chicago Blackhawks broadcast booth at such a monumental time in the organization’s history. My family and I are extremely grateful to the Wirtz family for giving me the opportunity to join such a storied franchise. It will truly be an honor to call games for an Original Six team and to work with someone as incredibly talented and respected as Darren Pang,” said Ball.

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