Forslund signs five-year deal to call Kraken games on ROOT SPORTS
SEATTLE—Jan 26th 2021— The Seattle Kraken today announced the signing of a multi-year agreement with the ROOT SPORTS regional sports network to be the team’s television broadcast partner. ROOT SPORTS, a joint venture between the Seattle Mariners and AT&T Sports Networks, has a five-state footprint that includes Washington, Oregon, Alaska, Montana and Idaho. It will broadcast all regional games not selected for national broadcast. Additionally, the Seattle Kraken have introduced current NHL on NBC play-by-play announcer, John Forslund, as the team broadcaster to call all television broadcasts on ROOT SPORTS.
Pacific Northwest Home for Sports
Under the new agreement, ROOT SPORTS will televise approximately 75 of the Seattle Kraken’s regular season games, both at home at Climate Pledge Arena and on the road. Building on its strong history as the television broadcaster for professional and college teams in the Pacific Northwest, the Network has delivered 72,000 hours of sports programming since 2011 when it rebranded to ROOT SPORTS. In addition to its partnerships with MLB and NBA teams, AT&T Sports Networks is already the local broadcast partner for two NHL teams, the Vegas Golden Knights and the Pittsburgh Penguins, via its regional sports networks branded as AT&T SportsNet.
“Our partnership with ROOT SPORTS gives our fans around the Pacific Northwest a home that is already familiar to them,” said Tod Leiweke, CEO of the Seattle Kraken. “Their experience with the Seattle Mariners made them a great choice to build a broadcast that will be unique for our fans. Additionally, their broadcast distribution will help us ensure that Kraken games will be on at every sports bar around the Pacific Northwest.”
“On behalf of the entire AT&T Sports Networks and ROOT SPORTS team we look forward to working with the Seattle Kraken to bring the excitement of Kraken hockey to the Seattle-Tacoma area and hockey fans throughout the Pacific Northwest,” said President of AT&T Sports Networks Patrick Crumb. “Working with an NHL team from its inception is an incredible opportunity that we are very happy to get the chance to do again. I would like to thank Kraken CEO, Tod Leiweke and Kraken COO, Victor de Bonis for their diligence and spirit of partnership throughout this process.”
Hey Hey, Whadda Ya Say, Seattle!
John Forslund joins the Seattle Kraken after previously serving in broadcast roles for the Carolina Hurricanes/Hartford Whalers. He joined the organization in 1991 and began calling games on radio and television in 1995.
He has also served as a national broadcaster for NBC Sports’ coverage of the NHL and will call national games in that role outside of his duties with the Kraken.
He will join fellow Team Broadcaster and radio play-by-play voice, Everett Fitzhugh, to create a powerful duo that will be the voice of hockey in the Pacific Northwest.
“It is an honor to join the Seattle Kraken as their inaugural television voice,” said Forslund. “I am looking forward to reuniting with Ron Francis and working alongside Everett Fitzhugh. Throughout my career I have cherished my connection with fans. To get the chance to create that bond and tell the Kraken story from day one is a magnificent opportunity. I would like to thank the Seattle Kraken for this chance.”
“John Forslund is one of the best broadcasters in sport. He always brings fresh perspective and having him as a voice of our franchise is a big win for us and for our fans,” said Leiweke. “He will play a role in introducing hockey to new fans and become a team ambassador for us.”
The Seattle Kraken will begin their inaugural season in 2021 at Climate Pledge Arena on the campus of Seattle Center.
About Seattle Kraken
The Seattle Kraken are the National Hockey League’s newest franchise, set to play their inaugural season in 2021-2022 at Climate Pledge Arena at Seattle Center, developed by Oak View Group. Visit www.nhl.com/kraken for the latest news and information including press releases, multimedia content and the latest hires.
About ROOT SPORTS
ROOT SPORTS is the television home of the Seattle Mariners, Seattle Seahawks, Portland Timbers, Gonzaga Bulldogs, and Big Sky Conference. The network delivers more than 350 live events each year across a five-state footprint. ROOT SPORTS is operated by AT&T Sports Networks, which operates regional sports networks in the Northwest, Pittsburgh, Rocky Mountain and Southwest regions. The four networks combined reach across 22 states and own exclusive rights to produce and distribute live events from more than 25 teams and conferences.