John Davidson (born February 27, 1953 in Ottawa, Ontario), is the president of hockey operations of the Columbus Blue Jackets and a former goaltender for the St. Louis Blues (1973–75) and New York Rangers (1975–83) of the National Hockey League. He is also well known as a long-time hockey broadcaster. On June 4, 2009, it was announced that Davidson would be honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the 2009 Foster Hewitt Memorial Award for his contributions to broadcasting.
Playing career Edit
Growing up in western Canada, he played his minor hockey in Calgary, Alberta. He was drafted fifth overall in 1973, and became the first goalie in NHL history to jump directly from major junior to the NHL. While his hockey career was fraught with many significant injuries, he is perhaps best remembered as a player for leading the Rangers to the 1979 Stanley Cup Finals on an injured left knee. His jersey numbers were 35, 00 and 30. Davidson was the first, and one of only two, NHL players to wear the number 00; after Martin Biron briefly wore the number in 1995, the league banned the use of the number.
Davidson was accidentally the inspiration for the title song of the 1978 hit album Double Vision by the rock group Foreigner. Members of the band were watching a Stanley Cup Playoff game between Davidson's New York Rangers and the Buffalo Sabres. Members of the band were fans of the Rangers. Davidson was shaken up when an unknown member of the Sabres took a hard shot that hit Davidson's goalie mask. As he was recovering, announcers Jim Gordon and Bill Chadwick said Davidson was suffering from "Double Vision.
Broadcasting career Edit
After retiring due to injury, he joined MSG's hockey coverage staff in 1983, and was the color commentator for Rangers games from 1986–87 to 2005–06. Davidson, often known by the nickname "J.D.", became one of the most prominent color commentators in the sport, and his hockey insight is so well respected that he currently sits on the Hockey Hall of Fame selection committee. Long-time network TV partner Mike Emrick also sits on that committee.
Davidson (like his former MSG Network booth-mate Sam Rosen) has also contributed to NHL coverage on various national television networks (including CBC, Fox, ABC, ESPN, NBC and Versus when it was the American version of the Outdoor Life Network (OLN)). The following timeline is a list of all season-long hockey coverage he has done, such as in-game commentary and post-game analysis shows. It does not include special events such as the Winter Olympics or Canada Cup. Davidson was known as a broadcaster for his signature phrase of "Oh baby!" He was also featured in full motion videos shot for the EA Sports video game NHL 97.