DETROIT -- FSN Detroit will be the first U.S. television outlet to have its play-by-play announcer stationed at ice level for an NHL game when Ken Daniels describes the Red Wings-Ottawa Senators game on Tuesday, Dec. 12.
Daniels will be stationed from a position between the team benches. The game begins at 7:30 p.m.
Daniels, in his 10th season of calling Red Wings' games on FSN Detroit, will describe the game from the vantage point of the players and officials, providing a unique experience for himself and the viewing audience.
Mickey Redmond will remain in his press box location for the telecast, providing his usual in-depth analysis and Telestator segments to complement Daniels' ice-level observations.
"It's a great challenge that I expect will get me into the game more than ever, and I think will get the viewer more into the game as well," Daniels said. "Mickey and I have worked together for 10 years and know each other's style and cadence so well that I expect we'll work well together in this format, too. I think viewers will enjoy seeing and hearing the game from two different perspectives."
Daniels has experience calling a game from ice level, having done so for FSN Detroit's production of the Red Wings-Montreal Canadiens alumni game last February. An avid hockey player and high school hockey referee, Daniels is well-prepared for his unique and historic broadcast assignment."You definitely see the game differently from ice level where things happen very fast," Daniels said. "I expect to get a better sense of the feel of the game by being able to see and hear the players, coaches and officials up close."
In addition to his game description, Daniels hopes to conduct interviews with players and coaches during stoppages in play that can either be aired live or on tape.
The ice-level play-by-play telecast is the latest in a line of all-access techniques FSN Detroit is employing on Wings telecasts and related programming, which have included in-game audio with players and coaches, exclusive audio and video during practice sessions, and live coverage of coach Mike Babcock's postgame comments to the media.
FSN Detroit's ice-level play-by-play effort is part of a trend around the NHL to provide unique experiences for the television audience. Last week, Canada's all-sports network TSN recently placed both of its announcers between the benches for a New York Rangers-Buffalo Sabres game. TSN and some U.S. telecasters have used a "one-up, one-down" method which finds the play-by-play announcer in the booth and the analyst at rinkside. Some FSN regional networks station a third reporter on or near the benches to provide interesting in-game observations and interviews.
The ice-level broadcast, while new to the NHL, was used by Russian broadcasters during the 1972 Summit Series between Canada and Russia.
FSN Detroit's coverage of the Red Wings is available to more than 3.2 million households throughout Michigan and portions of Northwest Ohio and Northern Indiana.