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Bob Cole to return to Hockey Night in Canada next season

Ron MacLean set up Sunday's Western Conference final cliffhanger by revealing that Bob Cole will return to Hockey Night in Canada as a play-by-play announcer next season.

Hall of Fame broadcaster started with Hockey Night in 1973

Bob Cole, as seen preparing for Game 7 of the Western Conference finals between the Chicago Blackhawks and the Los Angeles Kings. (Jason Murdoch/CBC)

Ron MacLean set up Sunday's Western Conference final cliffhanger by revealing that Bob Cole will return to Hockey Night in Canada as a play-by-play announcer next season.

Cole's status was uncertain after Rogers won the Canadian broadcast rights for the NHL starting in 2014-15.

The St. John's, N.L., native joined the broadcast team at Hockey Night in Canada in 1973.

Cole was over a decade into his broadcasting career when he joined CBC Radio in 1969, a tenure that included calling the Summit Series three years later between Canada and the Soviet Union.

Cole is probably best linked with colour commentator Harry Neale, forming a team that lasted 26 years beginning in 1985. In addition to dozens of Stanley Cup finals, Cole called Canada's gold medal victory at the 2002 Olympics.

He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1996 as the recipient of the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award for excellence in hockey broadcasting, named after his former Hockey Night in Canada mentor and colleague.

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