Air Canada Centre was the stage for about 50 people on Wednesday looking to become the next in arena-host for the Toronto Maple Leafs. The eventual winner will have some big shoes to fill taking over for Monika Platek who will be moving on to work for the CTV Olympic consortium.
“Monika set the bar high and she did a great job and we’ve had a lot of success with our announcers,” said Mike Ferriman, Manager of Game Operations.
The process on Wednesday began at 1 p.m. and involved the hopefuls reading a few promotions and also having to interview “Doug Gilmour” with Ferriman and other game-crew members looking on to judge the best candidate possible.
After their initial run through Wednesday Ferriman was still unsure if there would be a callback for a few of the finalists or if he would make his decision based on their one performance.
The game- night crew is like a big family and anyone who will be brought in will not only have to do well with the promotions but will need to fit in with the rest of the crew.
“We will definitely bring in anyone we are considering for an interview to sort of get to know them a little better,” Ferriman said. “We want to make sure that someone not only can handle our promotions well but also fits in well with our game-presentation team.”
While one host will be definitely hired, there is also the chance that a second person could be brought on board to assist with the heavy workload that takes place on game nights.
“There is the possibility of hiring a secondary person who might do two or three promotions a game to sort of break things up and do some of the intermission stuff,” Ferriman said.
The position of in-arena announcer has led to past announcers moving on to some pretty big networks and shows in Canada.
“We’ve had them go on to work for Leafs TV, Sportsnet, Hockey Night In Canada, The Score, CTV,” Ferriman said.
When the new host or hosts are hired mapleleafs.com will have it first.