IceHogs Broadcaster Joseph Zakrzewski Joins Blackhawks 2021-22 Broadcast and Content Team
The Chicago Blackhawks today announced a roster of play-by-play broadcasters and personalities who will join the broadcast and content team for select games this season on NBC Sports Chicago, the exclusive television home of Blackhawks hockey, WGN Radio 720-AM and across several other Blackhawks content channels.
Among those filling in throughout the 2021-22 season for legendary Blackhawks Hall-of-fame play-by-play broadcaster Pat Foley, in his 39th and final season, are Mike Monaco, Stephen Nelson, Chris Vosters and John Wiedeman. That crew will work alongside longtime analyst Eddie Olczyk and a newcomer to the Blackhawks broadcast booth, Blackhawks content analyst Colby Cohen.
Wiedeman will continue to call Blackhawks games on WGN Radio 720-AM with Troy Murray. When Wiedeman moves over to call TV, Alan Fuehring, Joey Zakrzewski and Jason Ross, Jr. will be among those filling in on radio.
The Blackhawks also announced additional contributors to their broadcast and content teams who will serve in various roles throughout the season, including Adam Burish, Caley Chelios, Colin Fraser, Genna Rose, Patrick Sharp and Andrew Shaw.
“We’re always looking to elevate our fan experience to higher levels, and this is just the start of many exciting things coming on all Blackhawks content channels,” said Blackhawks President of Business Jaime Faulkner. “Fans will get more information, behind the scenes access and entertaining content this season. We are adding additional experienced and energetic voices to our legendary and popular broadcast booth to further enhance our broadcasts on NBC Sports Chicago and our Blackhawks content channels to showcase the dynamic team we have on the ice.”
“We are always evolving storytelling and content with our live production and pre and post-game programming to give the viewers the best experience on TV,” said John Schippman, VP of Content for NBC Sports Chicago. “We have been partnering with the Blackhawks since January to develop new elements to this year’s broadcast and adding top talent was a key first move.”
Details on the specific broadcast schedule and announcer pairings will be announced throughout the Blackhawks regular season.
TV Guest Play-by-Play Announcers (in alphabetical order)
Mike Monaco has worked as a play-by-play broadcaster for two years at ESPN where he has worked various events including the 2021 Little League World Series for the network. In addition, he also works at NESN where calls select Boston Red Sox games. Monaco also called select Chicago White Sox games in August, alongside Steve Stone. He has done hockey play-by-play for the Big Ten Network and the University of Notre Dame—his alma mater.
Stephen Nelson currently works at NHL Network where he recently did play-by-play for the 2021 World Junior Championship, and NHL Network’s 2021 showcase series. In addition, he currently serves as on-air talent at MLB Network where he hosts the popular show “Intentional Talk.” He was named to Forbes’ “30 Under 30” in sports list in 2016 and began his broadcasting career with the American Hockey League’s Rockford IceHogs serving as studio host, color commentator and play-by-play broadcaster. He is a graduate of Chapman University.
Chris Vosters has experience working for the Big Ten Network, FOX Sports, ESPN, NBC Sports and Stadium. He called play-by-play for the 2019 NCAA Women’s Frozen Four and Big Ten hockey. Vosters is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin.
John Wiedeman is well-known to Blackhawks fans and enters his 16th season as the radio voice of the team. He has called three Stanley Cup championships with the Blackhawks, received top honors in the Chicago market four times for “Best Play-by-Play” category by the Illinois Broadcasters Association along with partner Troy Murray and won Illinois Sportscaster of the Year by the Illinois Broadcasters Association. Wiedeman also has NHL broadcasting experience with the New York Islanders, Philadelphia Flyers, Tampa Bay Lightning and Columbus Blue Jackets. Wiedeman will remain the regular Blackhawks play-by-play announcer on WGN Radio.
Radio Guest Play-by-Play Announcers (in alphabetical order)
Alan Fuehring is the Director of Broadcasting and Communications for the Bridgeport Islanders of the American Hockey League. He has served as play-by-play voice since 2016 and has filled in for the New York Islanders during preseason and regular-season broadcasts. The Illinois native graduated from Bradley University.
Jason Ross, Jr. began calling high school and college hockey on both television and radio while still in high school. His passion and hard work was rewarded when Jason was hired by ESPN in the summer of 2021 to call college football for the network. The Detroit native covered all four major sports including the Red Wings for The Motor City Roundup.
Joseph Zakrzewski joined the IceHogs early in the 2017-18 season after two and a half seasons with the AHL’s Ontario Reign as their Director of Communications and Broadcasting. There, he oversaw team communications and public/media relations while serving as the play-by-play broadcaster during the 2015-16 and 2016-17 seasons. Prior to his stint in Ontario, the Sam Houston State alum spent six campaigns with the ECHL’s South Carolina Stingrays as the play-by-play broadcaster and Director of Public Relations, where he earned the ECHL Broadcaster of the Year award in 2012-13.
Content/Broadcast Contributors (in alphabetical order)
Adam Burish played nine seasons in the NHL including his first four with the Blackhawks—the team that drafted him in 2002. Burish was a member of the 2010 Stanley Cup team and also played with the San Jose Sharks and Dallas Stars. Burish is a native of Madison, Wis. He played college hockey at the University of Wisconsin where he was a member of the 2006 NCAA Championship team.
Caley Chelios has spent the last five seasons with the Tampa Bay Lightning where she worked as a full-time radio analyst and contributed to the Lightning’s television broadcasts and streaming platforms. Caley attended Northwestern University on a lacrosse scholarship where she won a national championship her freshman year. She’s the daughter of former Blackhawks defenseman Chris Chelios and earned her master’s degree at Northwestern’s Medill College of Journalism.
Colin Fraser is a three-time Stanley Cup champion (including 2010 with Chicago and 2012 and 2014 with Los Angeles) and spent four of his eight NHL seasons with the Chicago Blackhawks (2006-2010) collecting 20 goals and 58 points in 359 NHL games. The 36-year-old Sicamus, British Columbia native was originally drafted by the Philadelphia Flyers in 2003 and played his last NHL game with the St. Louis Blues in 2015. Fraser currently serves as an amateur scout for the Blackhawks.
Genna Rose, who joins Jon Hansen as the team’s in-arena host, has broadcasting and production experience in all four major professional sports. Rose previously covered the Detroit Lions and Tigers for Sports Illustrated, has worked as a sideline reporter for ESPN3 and covers the Big Ten Conference for Sports Illustrated.
Patrick Sharp won three Stanley Cups with the Chicago Blackhawks (2010, 2013, 2015) and bagged four 30-goal seasons over his impressive 16-year NHL career. Sharp retired a Blackhawk after returning to Chicago to play his final NHL season in 2017-2018. He’s spent the last three seasons working as a television analyst for NBC Sports for their NHL regular season and playoff coverage.
Andrew Shaw won two Stanley Cups with the Chicago Blackhawks in 2013 and 2015. Over his 10-year NHL career that included stints with the Blackhawks and Montreal Canadiens, Shaw scored 116 goals and 247 points and collected 573 penalty minutes in 544 games. He announced his retirement from hockey in April of 2021.