Long-time Sabres announcer, local resident given key to Niagara Falls


Published April 13, 2022 at 4:07 pm

Niagara Falls Mayor Jim Diodati gives long-time Buffalo Sabres play-by-play announcer Rick Jeanneret, who's retiring at the season, a key to the city. (Photo: Facebook)

Long-time Buffalo Sabres announcer Rick Jeanneret was given the Key To The City Of Niagara Falls by Mayor Jim Diodati at the beginning of yesterday’s (April 12) council meeting.

Jeanneret, who’s retiring at the end of this season after 51 consecutive seasons behind the mic with the same team (an NHL record), is also a long-time Niagara Falls resident and was born in St. Catharines.

“Last night at Council, it was an honour to present legendary sports broadcaster, Rick Jeanneret with a Key To the ity of Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada,” said Diodati.

“If you’ve ever seen or listened to a Buffalo Sabres hockey game, you’ve no doubt heard RJ ‘s passionate game calls and colourful player nicknames,” Diodati continued.

Diodati would have been just five years old when Jeanneret first got behind the mic for the Sabres games back in the 1971-72 season but added, “Prior to his work in Buffalo, you could hear him calling the Niagara Falls Flyers games in the 1960’s and on CJRN-FM radio in the 1980’s-90’s locally in our City he still calls home.”

“What a legend… your hometown of Niagara Falls is so proud of you!”

As Diodati said, Jeanneret made a name for himself in the city, calling the Niagara Falls Flyers games in the 1960s and further established himself as an icon in the tourist city as a popular early-morning disc jockey at the now-defunct CJRN-AM radio station from 1984 to 1992.

The Sabres also honoured Jeanneret on April 1 when a banner with his name went up to the rafters alongside all those famous Sabres names.

On that day, Diodati gave him the nod of hometown pride. “A big night with the Buffalo Sabres for our local and loved celebrity, Rick Jeanneret,” said Diodati. “Thank you for your 51 years of play-by-plays.”

Jeanneret was inducted into the Sabres Hall of Fame in 2011, the Greater Buffalo Sports Hall of Fame in 2012 and was also given the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award and was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in November of 2012.

Rick Jeanneret poses in front of a banner with all of his big catch-phrases
from his 51 years behind the mic at Buffalo Sabres games. The biggest of
them all? “May Day! May Day!” when Brad May got around Boston’s Ray
Bourque to score on Andy Moog, notching the series-clinching goal in OT
of Game 4 of the 1993 Adams Division Semifinals


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