Hall of Fame hockey broadcaster Mike Emrick announced his retirement Monday after almost 50 years behind the microphone.

The man affectionately known as "Doc" for his doctorate in communications spent the past 15 years as the voice of the NHL in the United States. Emrick, 74, called 22 Stanley Cup Finals and six Olympics since working his way up from the minors in the 1970s and did the most recent NHL playoffs remotely from his home in Michigan with his wife, Joyce, and dogs nearby.

"Things change over 50 years, but much of what I love is unchanged from then to now and into the years ahead," Emrick said in a video essay. "I still get chills seeing the Stanley Cup. I especially love when the horn sounds, and one team has won and another team hasn't, all hostility can dissolve into the timeless great display of sportsmanship -- the handshake line. ...

"I leave you with sincere thanks."

Emrick said he wanted to do this job from the first time he saw a hockey game. He got his first taste of it in Pittsburgh during the 1970-71 season as a freelance reporter for the Beaver County Times, earned a Ph.D. in broadcast communications from Bowling Green a few years later and progressed through the minors before reaching the NHL.

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