By Bill Hoppe
BUFFALO — Former Sabres enforcer Rob Ray will become the team’s full-time color commentator next season beside play-by-play man Rick Jeanneret on radio and television, replacing Harry Neale, who’s moving to another analyst role after five years.
The club also announced Monday that Jeanneret, who will be honored with the Hockey Hall of Fame’s Foster Hewitt Award later this year, has signed a new multi-year contract and will call more games in 2012-13. No number was specified. He called 57 contests last year, and had been traveling to select road games for several seasons.
In addition, Brian Duff will become the full-time host for all games broadcast on MSG. Duff filled in last season when Kevin Sylvester, the team’s TV host since 2005, substituted for Jeanneret. Sylvester will begin hosting a daily radio show on WGR 550 later this month.
Neale will appear with Mike Robitaille during the pregame show and intermission reports.
Ray, who’s had several analyst roles over the years, most recently served as a rinkside commentator.