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Born in Canada in 1936, Patrick Daniel “Dan” Kelly was best known as the national network play-by-play announcer for National Hockey League games on CBS, the NHL Network, USA Network, as well as several Canadian TV networks.
He was also the radio voice of the St. Louis Blues from early in their existence (the late 1960s) until his death in 1989.
In addition to his 21 seasons broadcasting the Blues, he broadcast 16 Stanley Cup Finals between 1969 and 1988. He was also the lead play-by-play announcer of the 1987 Canada Cup, and also the lead play-by-play hockey announcer for CTV at the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary.
His voice allowed him to project above the roaring crowds at the NHL arenas. He acknowledged that his booming call, "HE SHOOTS, HE SCORRRES!" was patterned after that of the famous long-time NHL announcer Foster Hewitt.
Kelly called two of the most famous goals in hockey history. One was Bobby Orr's Cup-winning overtime goal in 1970:
“Bobby Orr... behind the net to Sanderson to OOOORR! BOBBY OOOORR! . . . scores, and the Boston Bruins have won the Stanley Cup!”
The other was Mario Lemieux's goal with 1:26 remaining in the decisive game 3 of the 1987 Canada Cup:
“Hawerchuk wins it ahead, here's Lemieux poking it to center. Lemieux ahead to Gretzky, has Murphy with him on a 2-on-1. To Lemieux. In on goal. He shoots! HE SCORES!! Mario Lemieux, with 1:26 remaining!”
Kelly was also in the booth for another Stanley Cup winning goal, calling the action for CBS as Bob Nystrom won the Cup for the Islanders in 1980:
“Islanders' number 10, Henning to Tonelli. Here's Tonelli with Nystrom. The pass to Nystrom -- HE SCOOORES! BOB NYSTROM! And the New York Islanders have won the Stanley Cup!”
He also called a Stanley Cup semifinal in 1971 at Chicago Stadium (nicknamed "The Madhouse on Madison"). When the Blackhawks scored an empty-netter to clinch the series, he yelled, "I can feel our broadcast booth shaking! That's the kind of place Chicago Stadium is right now!"
Besides hockey, Kelly also broadcast NFL for CBS Sports, as well as Missouri Tigers football, St. Louis Cardinals baseball and St. Louis Cardinals football for St. Louis radio station KMOX at different times in his career. Dan also broadcast the 1964 Grey Cup from Toronto along with Don Whitman and Bud Grant.
Kelly died on February 10, 1989 from lung cancer. His sons, John and Dan, have been broadcasting NHL games for various NHL franchises, including the Blues, for whom John is currently doing the television play-by-play.
Several months after his death, Kelly was the posthumous recipient of the Lester Patrick Trophy and the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award. And in 2006, the St. Louis Blues dedicated the Enterprise Center press box in honor of Kelly.