Chad Pergram consulted for weeks on two folders: one for the upcoming election, the other with his insights into the Washington capitals. He has cheat sheets for each pronunciation: for the names of the congressional candidates in one and for foreign NHL stars in the other. He maps campaign spending in one and the average ice age in the other.
Fox News executive producer will be calling Capitals Radio on Saturday night when the team is the third man against John Walton and Ken Sabourin to face Dallas Stars. Ben Raby is gone for the night.
Pergram is responsible for the interruption reports, the resetting of the games towards the end of each period, as well as spots in the pre-game and post-match shows. He says it's a broadcasting dream that has become reality in the last few decades. Below is an interview with Pergram about his first ice hockey transfer. Questions and answers have been edited for clarity and clarity.
How did you become an ice hockey fan and a caps fan? And how did this radio gig come about?
I've worked on the radio for many years, from Cincinnati to high school, and I've always been a sports fan. And there is no NHL team in Cincinnati, southwest Ohio. When I moved to Washington after graduation, the caps became my ice hockey team. I have been playing games for 25 years. And when you go to school in Ohio, Ohio, you live in Swing Hall, and the old hockey arena was right across the parking lot. That's how I got into hockey.
John Walton, who is of course the voice of Caps, is a colleague from Miami. I did not know him well when we were in Miami. He's a bit younger than me and that's why he graduated. He and I crossed paths a few times, but when he came here I said, "Hey, congratulations on the new gig. We met a few years ago, we go to dinner. "And we've just become friends and talk a lot about hockey. He told me that Ben Raby would be outside and asked if I would play.
I think it's good to leave the comfort zone from time to time. I know Capitol Hill pretty well. I know applications for a new commitment and the budget reconciliation process. I know the Cloture Rule in the Senate, but I would like to know something else when confronting violations, minors, and kink folds. So it's good to be out of the comfort zone and try something that's a little different. And Capitol Hill can be a contact sport, much like hockey.
Have you already played hockey? And have you ever played hockey?
I have never put skates on to play hockey. Not once. I did sports. I played soccer, played baseball. I studied Martial Arts for many years and it is not something that I was not an athlete. But often you are a product of your parents. There was no hockey in southwest Ohio, except in Miami, which is not very far from the place I grew up with, but it was just my father who was very interested in baseball. I grew up in the 70's and it was the Big Red Machine of Pete Rose and Johnny Bench.
I say this: I may not have been interested in being an ice hockey player, but I figured there were two different ways I could do professionally to be a sports announcer or a news broadcaster. And the reason I got interned at WKRC radio in high school was because they wore the Bengals games and I thought I was doing sports. And I ended up in the editorial office and never did any sports. I have always made news and to some extent I have always reported on the congress. A few years later, I reported on this man's first race for the congress, a man named John Boehner, who became the House Speaker. He was the local congressman. And the guy who lived in my neighborhood in Miami in the neighborhood was Paul Ryan, who is now Speaker of the House.
How do you prepare for your first hockey transfer?
My wife and I were in western Canada last week. We often do hockey road trips, but we never saw Capitals play. And so we finally saw her in Edmonton. This was a small preparation, although I did not know that I was doing the show at that time. This is a kind of preparation to watch games. I've seen the Dallas games in the last few days and spent a lot of time talking.
I have a list here with the midterm elections on Tuesday. There are a number of House candidates I've never met, and I do not know what to call their name because they have not yet been chosen. People like Guy Reschenthaler (Rec-on-soll-er) in Pennsylvania in the 14th Ward against Bibiana Boerio (Bib-e-ah-no-Bor-E-O). But I also work with Julius Honka (U-li-us) and Miro Heiskanen (Hace-can-en) and Anton Khudobin (Koo-doh-bin) with Dallas. You write them up phonetically. I saw Dallas. The other day they played Montreal. Of course, the caps also recently played Montreal and Jesperi Kotkaniemi (Yes-per-E-Mantel-E-nem-E) scored two goals on Thursday night. Today I heard from our friends at the Embassy of Finland that Kotkaniemi means Eagle Peninsula. So that's in my notes.
Do you see any similarities between politics and hockey?
I've been told that there are some postgame scrams in the locker room, where reporters all gather around and ask questions. There is a hearing or you bring someone off the floor. Everyone knows who to talk to. It is the same principle in this regard.
I was in 2008 for the presidential election in New Hampshire. And I went to the minor league game of Manchester Monarchs. This was when they were the AHL daughter of the Kings. But it is New Hampshire during the Primary. Politics is part of the game. And so Kevin Westgarth got a pretty good slaughter that evening. I interviewed him in the locker room and he said, "I'd rather fight someone on the ice than with the dirty backgrounds they make in politics." Straight up. It's right there in front of you. And I think that's the way it is.
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