There are three things I want in a local radio play by play man:
- The ability to factually and clearly describe the action.
- Reasonable homerism.
- Calling the exciting points of a game like he is five beers deep.
Steve Holman is this man for the Hawks. He calls a great game, bleeds Hawks, and almost fought Dwyane Wade in the playoffs. Check, check, and check. Holman has done over 1700 games as the radio voice for the team.....consecutively. I don't know what the record is for this but at some point this year, the Hawks should just stop the game and let him run around the court Cal Ripkin style.
This year Holman begins his 25th year with the club, and really, if you have never sat and listend to a Hawks game on radio, do it this year. You won't be disappointed.
After all the uproar over his comments on Wade, Holman nonchalantly said, "It’s amazing. This poor old radio announcer has done these games for 24 years in mostly anonymity and the funny part of it is I’ve done the same thing for 24 years. I’ve had the same shtick. I learned from Johnny Most. He was my mentor. He taught me it’s the Good Guys vs. the Bad Guys, like in the cowboy movies. It’s all theater. It’s not brain surgery. I’m not operating on anybody’s tumor or performing quadruple bypasses on anyone. I’m trying to entertain our Hawks fans for 2 ½ hours so they can get away from 8 1/2 percent unemployment and GM going belly up, from Arlen Spector changing parties to the Swine Flu. People hear enough of that. I’d like to give them some enjoyment for a little while."
Somewhere I think the late, great Johnny Most is smiling. I know I am.
(HT Lang Whitaker for the reason.)