The 2015-16 season will be the first season in Dallas Stars history without Ralph Strangis’ familiar voice in the broadcast booth. Strangis’ departure was a surprise to most, but as he noted so eloquently here in his letter to the Stars fans he wants to pursue “Act 2”.
Like a lot of older hockey fans I fell in the love with the game listening to a passionate play-by-play broadcaster on the radio. It was the early 80’s, the team wasn’t that great, but the play-by-play broadcaster made it exciting. That play-by-play broadcaster was former New Jersey Devils and Tampa Bay Lightning broadcaster Larry Hirsch. When Hirsch left the team the radio coverage wasn’t the same. However, by that point I had already become full-fledged hockey fan.
Act 2 For Stars Fans
For Dallas Stars fans the start of the 2015-16 season will undoubtedly feel a little strange without Strangis calling the game. Regardless of the setting, whether it was listening to the game on the ride home from work, or sitting in the home theater room with family and friends, Strangis’ unbridled enthusiasm was always transparent to the listener and viewer alike.
Rarely does a broadcasting personality spend 25 years with an organization. Like many of the original Stars players, Strangis joined the team after starting out as a member of the Minnesota North Stars organization.
Strangis started as a color commentator working with the voice of the Minnesota North Stars Al Shaver. When the team decided to move to Dallas, Shaver decided to stay back in Minnesota. This ultimately opened the door for Strangis to slide over to the play-by-play side of the mic.
Ralph and Razor
In 1996 the Stars hired former NHL goalie Daryl “Razor” Reaugh as color analyst. Since then, “Ralph and Razor” as they are affectionately known, developed into the best sports broadcasting duo in the Metroplex and one of the NHL’s best broadcasting tandems. The success of their on-air chemistry influenced the Stars to use them for both radio and television broadcasts since 2008.
Their pinnacle moment was definitely the Stars winning the Cup in 1999. Strangis’ call of the Cup clinching overtime goal, “Hull scores! Yes! Yes! Yes! The Stars win the Stanley Cup, the Stars win the Stanley Cup!”
Ralph speaks with The Ticket
After his announcement Strangis appeared on 1310AM The Ticket’s Bob and Dan show, and explained he is interested in pursuing something in the “sports documentary genre” and went on to say, “I always though I’d work for NFL films, I like producing and writing, maybe its another play-by-play spot with other opportunities available.”
— Tyler Seguin (@tseguinofficial) April 24, 2015
“You get invested in these kids, I got some texts, Steve Ott text me last night, Brenden Morrow text me and Alex Chiasson text’d me this morning and he’s got a playoff game tonight. I love these kids Tyler and Jamie and Patrick Nemeth, Val lives in my building, Val and I traded rides to the airport and back.” Click here to listen to the entire audio clip.
You have to respect someone who can leave their profession at the top and venture out into a bit of the unknown to find new challenges. Or as the great Wayne Gretzky once said, “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” Or perhaps even better expressed in one of Strangis’ favorite personal quotes, “Never be afraid to be scared.”
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Ed Sarno is a Dallas Stars staff writer for The Hockey Writers. You can follow him on Twitter @Edtexmass09
I have a Bachelor of Arts Degree is Sociology from Bridgewater State College. I have covered amateur hockey prospects with Texas roots for the scoutingreport.org, and I am a Dallas Stars writer for The Hockey Writers. I can be reached via Twitter @EdTexmass09.