Leah Hextall to join ESPN in historic play-by-play hire: report

ESPN has signed Leah Hextall to do play-by-play and other work on its NHL coverage, according to a report.

The New York Post confirmed the historic hire, making Hextall the first female play-by-play broadcaster to be a regular part of a national NHL television package. The exact number of games she will work is not yet known.

Hextall, who became the first woman in Canada to call a national NHL game with Sportsnet’s all-female crew last year, has been broadcasting hockey for 17 years for ESPN, Sportsnet, Hockey Night in Canada and NESN.

In 2019, she became the first woman to call play-by-play for the men’s NCAA Division I hockey tournament on ESPN.

Earlier this year, the NHL and ESPN announced a seven-year agreement that also includes extensive streaming rights. ESPN has a long history with the league, stretching back to the network’s launch, but hasn’t aired games since 2004.


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