When it comes to spitting amazing catchphrases following big plays on the ice, few broadcasters rival Mike Lange. The radio play-by-play voice of the Pittsburgh Penguins always pulls bizarre phrases out of his back pocket that will either make you laugh or question what you just heard — or both.
“Slap me silly, Sidney” following Sidney Crosby’s first NHL goal back in 2005 and “Scratch my back with a hacksaw” are just a couple of his iconic calls.
Off the wall and unique, they are what make the 71-year-old the broadcaster that he is. However, he doesn’t come up with all of them on his own. In fact, he enjoys crowdsourcing his calls from time to time.
“Shave my face with a rusty razor” was the winner of a contest 25 years ago when fans filled out a form and sent in their submissions. A quarter-century later, it was time to freshen up Lange’s lingo.
The ‘Name that Lange’ contest was launched through Facebook and the Pittsburgh Penguins’ website in mid-February. Fans from all over had the opportunity to send in their best “Lange-isms” to be considered by the man that’s been calling Penguins hockey for over 40 years.
Thousands of entries flooded in and were reviewed by Lange. On Monday, he released his five finalists.
After receiving thousands of entries, Mike Lange has selected five finalists for his new goal call. Which has your vote?
Buy me a banjo in Biloxi!
Make my donkey dance!
Hey! Who stole my pickle?
Get the boat ready, Bourquey! We're headed to Bogota!
Give that tiger a bath!
— Pittsburgh Penguins (@penguins) March 11, 2019
While I was a huge fan of “Hey! Who stole my pickle,” Lange decided to go in a different direction when he announced his winner via Twitter on Tuesday evening.
So, after all of that, “Buy me a banjo in Biloxi” was added to Lange’s arsenal. With its alliteration, random instrument and shout-out to a small city in Mississippi, I have a feeling that it’ll have some staying power.
Midway through the second period of the Penguins clash with the Washington Capitals on Tuesday, Pittsburgh’s Jake Guentzel found the back of the net to cut Washington’s lead in half. And, as expected, Lange delivered the goods for his listeners.
🎧: This new goal call from Mike Lange is a beauty. pic.twitter.com/gKcBLnZceY
— Pittsburgh Penguins (@penguins) March 13, 2019
Unfortunately, none of the fans that came up with the contest’s five finalists heard it. They were all at PPG Paints Arena enjoying their prizes: all-access passes to the game.
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