Kenny Albert called it “slacking” in comparison to some of his other recent spring extravaganzas, but that is very much a relative term for the indefatigable Rangers radio and NBC television announcer.
Albert spent the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs calling 12 games in 12 days in five cities – Montreal, New York, Chicago, Ottawa and Boston.
Adding to the degree of difficulty: Ottawa is not the easiest city to get in and out of for a New York-based announcer. Oh, and he had six overtime games among those first 12.
There was a two-day break with no NHL games at all between rounds, but after that Albert was back at it, calling four games in five nights in Ottawa, St. Louis and Nashville before taking Monday off.
He would have called Game 2 of the Rangers-Senators series in Ottawa on Saturday if not for the fact it is physically impossible to call a night game in St. Louis followed by an afternoon game in Ottawa followed by an afternoon game in Nashville.
Albert was to work Game 3 of Senators-Rangers at the Garden on Tuesday, then will take Wednesday off before working Game 4 at the Garden on Thursday.
In 2014, he called 16 games in 17 days in one stretch.
“It’s all good; no complaints whatsoever,” Albert said before Game 3. “I get to watch playoff games just about every night, overtime games, exciting games, so no complaints from me.”
Newspaper writers dread overtimes because of what they do to their deadlines. For announcers, though, “they’re all good,” Albert said. “Of course, if it goes real deep and you have an early flight the next morning you might not get as much sleep, but I think we all at some point want to get one of those four- or five-overtime games.”
Albert’s personal record is three overtimes. Or so it was before Game 3. You never know.