Carolina Hurricanes: Mike Maniscalco to Cover Down For John Forslund

Web personality and in game announcer Mike Maniscalco interviews Erik Haula #56 of the Carolina Hurricanes Photo by Gregg Forwerck/NHLI via Getty Images)
Web personality and in game announcer Mike Maniscalco interviews Erik Haula #56 of the Carolina Hurricanes Photo by Gregg Forwerck/NHLI via Getty Images) /

Carolina Hurricanes legendary broadcaster Forslund needs a contract

The Carolina Hurricanes have yet to re-sign John Forslund but already have a replacement, however temporary, for local broadcasts.

The Carolina Hurricanes and John Forslund have yet to come to an agreement that would have him call games for the Canes in 2020 and beyond. Until then Mike Maniscalco will cover down on broadcasting duties according to a report from The Herald.

For now, John Forslund will be working freelance for NBC Sports covering the upcoming playoffs which is expected to at least cover any games from round two and forward. Unless they come to an agreement before that, this will be the first time since 1991 that John has called a game while not being employed by the Carolina Hurricanes/Hartford Whalers.

It is clear that John isn’t ready to ride off into the sunset or even consider retiring from his broadcasting career:

"“I have to work. I have an opportunity. And we don’t have a deal.”"

Just like last season, Fox Sports Carolina, owned by the Sinclair Broadcast Group, is expected to cover a good chunk of the playoffs to include the qualifying or “play-in” round against the New York Rangers.

While Forslund is off with NBC Sports, Mike Maniscalco will be given the exceptionally large set of shoes left behind to try and fill. It isn’t his first time calling games for the Carolina Hurricanes. Last year when the team was on National TV for the second and third rounds (still luckily being called by John Forslund) Mike did a phenomenal job calling the games on the radio.

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But that was in part due to an another broadcasting contract not being renewed as well. Chuck Kaiton, the former radio broadcaster for the team who has worked for the franchise since the 1979-80 season, the NHL debut for the Whalers, was not given a new contract and was basically forced to ride into the sunset.

To a degree that made sense. Radio listener-ship has naturally decreased with the rise of technology and platforms such as podcasts. But even then, the duty of calling the game on the radio was punted to John Forslund and Tripp Tracey who diligently made sure to craft their calls to also cater to the small but loyal radio listener group.

Can Mike Maniscalco do the same?

While there is no reasonable way to expect him to fill Forslund’s shoes fully, I do believe he can do enough to carry the call and at least walk in the shoes. Hopefully all he will be asked for will be the few playoff games expected to be broadcasted on FS Carolinas before Tom Dundon and the Carolina Hurricanes reach and agreement with John Forslund.

The interesting tidbit is the fact that Jason Shaya, broadcaster for the Charlotte Checkers, whose affiliation with the Carolina Hurricanes is basically on hold, has not been brought into the mix. Shaya has been Forslund’s replacement during the regular season when Forslund was away on national coverage.

Perhaps using Maniscalco, an individual already under contract and expected to be a part of the broadcast, can be used as an indicator that perhaps the team is still commited to trying to keep John Forslund within the organization.

Question For CC Readers: Would you rather have Mansicalco or Shaya cover down for John?

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