Wednesday, March 9, 2011
|Click to see that even NHLers find Pierre annoying.|
The one problem is that this was on TSN. Whenever a game is on TSN there is a good chance that Gord Miller and Pierre McGuire are commenting. I don’t really have a problem with Gord Miller. He isn’t my favourite play-by-play guy, but he’s decent. Now Pierre McGuire is a different story.
There’s something about Pierre McGuire that people just find grating. This is unfortunate because he clearly knows a lot about hockey and has plenty of insight into the game. But when people are hoping that errant pucks go flying into your general area, it’s a pretty clear sign you aren’t well-liked.
What is it about Pierre McGuire that causes this reaction?
- Pierre loves hyping young players. This is fine, except whenever he describes them he makes sure to gush about what a “fine young man” they are. “Not only is this guy a great player, Gord, but he’s an even better person and that’s what’s important.” Give me a break.
- He also makes sure to tell everyone what Junior team that “fine young man” plays for, while describing what a joy he is to coach. This allows him to name drop a coach as well for good measure. In moderation this would be informative, but when you say these things over and over about every player, every game it gets annoying.
- Another way he goes about this is by telling a team’s fan base to get excited about players. “Gord, Columbus Blue Jacket fans better get real excited for Ryan Johansen, he’s going to be a special player in this league for a long, long time.” He could also let us know that this player is the “real deal”.
- His insistence on using phrases such as “big body presence” and “active stick”. “Foot speed” is another, but this has caught on around the league, so it isn’t a purely Pierre phenomenon.
- Every game he picks one player to actively gush over for an entire game. Yes, I like Mike Richards too and I think he’s a great player, but I don’t want to hear you talk about him the entire game. There are a lot of players on a team.
- If he’s talking about something French he’ll make a point to pronounce it with a French accent. He served as a colour commentator for the Canadiens, which might make you think he's a French-Canadian – but this was for their English-language radio broadcast. And he was born in New Jersey.
- The one thing that really bothers me is the way he calls penalties. Usually the play-by-play announcer will call penalties, but McGuire makes a point to announce it himself on occasion (often by cutting in). Again, in theory, this is a good practice. If the play-by-play announcer is slacking then the colour commentator should let everyone know there’s an upcoming penalty. What’s annoying is the way Pierre does this. He simply states “penalty” or “that’s a penalty” with an air of condescension that makes it sound like he’s smart and all-knowing and we’re all just peons. We could never know that was a penalty without the great Pierre McGuire showing us the way.
- Similarly, if a team has too many players on the ice he'll simply state "too many men, that's too many men for the Capitals" and if the referees don't call it he'll chuckle on air and let everyone know "they got away with that one!"
- He goes nuts over certain plays. Sure, during big moments of games even announcers show that they aren’t robots, but Pierre goes overboard. The WJHC is filled with these moments.
- He makes a point to prove that he isn’t biased. For instance, during the WJHC if a Canadian takes a penalty against a Russian or an American he will be quick to tell us that it’s a legitimate penalty and you can’t do that in hockey. “That’s the correct call. The referee got that one right, Gord.” Please, Pierre; you’re the same guy who invented the Double Dion. We know you like Canada and thought the Russian dove.
- He also makes a point to effusively praise the home city for any WJHC. This is nice, but when they're held in Buffalo we know you're just being polite.
- Basically, he yells at you.
- He makes a point to pronounce a player's full name. For example, instead of saying Chris Pronger like people have called him for years, Pierre will insist on calling him Christopher Pronger.
- I've never heard him say this, but my brother always gets mad when he says "that guy is sucking dirty pond water". Apparently, that's a term for someone who is really tired. I'm not sure where it comes from, but it's making the list.
- He appreciates the players that do the small thing, which is something people should value outside of Coach’s Corner, but he beats his points to death all game and it becomes unbearable. We get it, the Blackhawks are doing a great job chipping it past the defence, now can we please move the conversation forward.
I’d ask Pierre to tone it down, but clearly it’s working for him. It’s almost better to be hated as an announcer/analyst than unnoticeable, just ask Mike Milbury, it works for him.