While Ron MacLean talks NHL hockey as a Hockey Night in Canada host, he loves the minor hockey tales that come out of his gig as Hometown Hockey host.
MacLean will be in the Harbour City to host the hockey fan experience with Tara Slone this weekend and said it’s a “God send” to have the opportunity to learn about the stories.
“Like everything else in life, tell me a story and I’ll retain it forever,” MacLean told the News Bulletin during an interview Friday morning. “Facts are great and truth is great and they will have a lot of bearing on your belief in things, but stories are just – somehow they hit the heart and that’s what Hometown Hockey achieves.”
MacLean will work his Hockey Night in Canada gig the night before and will fly into Nanaimo Sunday morning for the events surrounding a double-header NHL broadcast. While he does enjoy it, it is tiring.
“I feel that Sword of Damocles over my head, even now trying to think, am I going to do justice to the story of Nanaimo? Have I got Kenora and Cranbrook out of my head? Will I even have a fighting chance at Medicine Hat a week from now? So I feel the burden that comes with trying to do Saturday night and Sunday night, but old enough hopefully to cope,” said MacLean.
Three former Vancouver Canucks will be in attendance at the Nanaimo stop, including Willie Mitchell, Kirk McLean and Brendan Morrison, which is great, said MacLean.
“Willie’s grandfather Les scored a game winner for the Nanaimo Clippers in 1945, so that’s fantastic,” said MacLean. “The show will speak for itself. It’s a double-header NHL telecast and lots of nice stories, but I love the fact that we’ll be able to talk about Willie Mitchell’s grandfather, and Lloyd Gilmour the referee, and Bill Gaston, the writer who’s on Gabriola Island … I hope, once again, we’ll do justice to, what is, a lovely town.”
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