Chris Denari prepared as always to call his first NBA playoff game

Whew! The wait is finally over. One of the classiest men in the broadcasting business will finally get what he deserves. Chris Denari, an Indiana native with a passion for sports and broadcasting will call his first NBA playoff game tonight on Fox Sports Indiana after five years with the Indiana Pacers.

A lot has been made about Troy Murphy and Mike Dunleavy finally ending their streak of the most games without a playoff appearance. Denari’s streak since 2006, ends tonight.

First and foremost, Chris Denari is a family man. He has three sons and a couple of dogs—one of which is named Granger. Just last weekend, in the midst of the playoffs, his son Wilson to see his favorite musical artist six hours north in Michigan.

I have had the pleasure of knowing Denari for almost a decade due to our jobs with the Indiana Pacers and Fever. He’s the radio and television voice of the team and I’m responsible for taking care of the visiting team and officials. More than that, I would love to have his job down the road. He has been a great mentor, helping me prepare for my games and understanding the sports broadcasting business.

Some of the many perks Denari will tell you about are the private plane, elegant buses and first-class hotels. But the one that is most meaningful perks is the chance to set his own schedule.

Because being the television voice of the Pacers is such a high-profile job, he is compensated justly and it is one of a his few jobs. Previously, the hard-working Denari worked multiple jobs at one time. But now he reports to nobody and can schedule his day accordingly. In doing so, he spends more time with his family even though he has to miss the occasional game for his sons while traveling with the team.

His favorite time to work is late into the night while his family is asleep. Chris cranks up the tunes and goes to work.

In all my years, I’ve never seen anyone prepare so much for anything. He is prepared for the unexpected and is knowledgeable on every level. His work is so meticulous and he has a reason and use for ever note.

This guy never rests. While attending game two in Chicago as a spectator, Denari recorded a video summary of the game at halftime. He has also never declined a speaking engagement—in fact, he thrives in the emcee role.

Denari is no stranger to calling a big game. He was the play-by-play man for many Butler NCAA games, the WNBA Finals, college basketball on the Big Ten Network and he was the sports director at Fox 59.

He is a clean-cut man with a strong character. He is one of the few people I have met that has never said a bad thing about another.

As a lifetime Pacers fans, he is enjoying the job every minute on the job. It’s often said, “do something you like and you’ll never work a day in your life.” I know Chris has his preparation complete and is anxious to finally broadcast his first NBA Playoff game. Tonight fans can watch CD on Fox Sports Indiana alongside Quinn Buckner.

Let this be the first of many to come.

Well done, my friend.

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