According to awfulannouncing.com, Boston Celtics radio play-by-play broadcaster Sean Grande will be the new play-by-play man for Bellator MMA, the next best thing to the UFC in the world of mixed martial arts.
Grande will take over the mic once controlled by Sean Wheelock for Bellator starting next week reportedly. In addition to calling Celtics' games as the "Voice of the Celtics" since 2001 with color commentator and former Celtics player Cedric Maxwell, Grande has also done a number of other basketball, baseball and hockey broadcasts including part-time duties with the Boston Red Sox Radio Network over the years.
He has not called any MMA or combat sports prior to joining Bellator, who recently broke their ratings record by 27% with the cable TV main event of Ken Shamrock vs. Kimbo Slice.
Via awfulannouncing.com, Bellator executive producer Scott Fishman pointed to the success of NFL Network’s Scott Hanson on Spike’s Premier Boxing Champions coverage as an example of how a more traditional sports commentator can thrive in calling combat sports.
It'll be interesting to hear Grande transition from more traditional sports into the fight game, but those that have listened to him before know he's got the pipes and intensity for it. If only he could bring along Cedric Maxwell as his color commentator for Bellator matches.
Just imagine hearing a "quack, quack, quack" after a big right hook to the head. (for those not in the Boston area, Maxwell often quacks after big plays by the Celtics.. the quacking started when the C's were on 1510 The Zone. They would joke that the frequency of the station was so poor that the only ones listening to them were the ocean birds and ducks out in the ocean)
This may be the closest Grande has come to calling combat sports in his career...
Top photo - CSSNE.com
Grande Max photo - Steve Babineau/Getty
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