Skip to content

Sabres’ Jeanneret diagnosed with throat cancer

Jul 2, 2014, 12:40 PM EDT

Rick Jeanneret AP

Longtime voice of the Sabres Rick Jeanneret has been diagnosed with throat cancer.

Here’s more, from the 71-year-old’s Tuesday telephone interview with the Buffalo News:

Jeanneret, who has been broadcasting Sabres games either on radio or television for 43 years, expects to have radiation treatment for six or seven weeks and possibly chemotherapy. His doctors in Hamilton, Ont., have told him that it is stage III cancer and that he has an 85 percent chance of recovery. He is meeting with them again Thursday.

“I would like to stress I have every intention of coming back,” said Jeanneret. “I have probably three months ahead of me that aren’t going to be fun. I know they aren’t going to be.”

He said his return to do play-by-play is “open-ended.”

“I consider this to be a bump in the road and am fully intending to come back and fulfill my obligations to the Sabres,” he said. “I know there is going to be a lot of concern. All I can do is ask everybody to please allow me and my family to keep this as private as possible. We will provide updates through the team.”

On Wednesday, the Sabres organization released the following statement:

The Buffalo Sabres are deeply saddened to learn of Rick Jeanneret’s cancer diagnosis. RJ has been a vital part of the Sabres family and the Buffalo community for 43 years and this news undoubtedly weighs heavily on everyone who has had the privilege of listening to his broadcasts through the years.

As he begins treatment in the coming weeks, we will continue to keep RJ, his wife, Sandra, his mother, Kay, his sister, Marcia, his children, Mark and Chris, his stepdaughter, Shelly, and his grandchildren in our thoughts. We wish RJ a full and speedy recovery and know his tenacity will serve him well in his fight. On behalf of the Jeanneret family, the Sabres are asking for respect of the family’s privacy as RJ undergoes treatment— any inquiries should be directed to Michael Gilbert (michael.gilbert@sabres.com).

The team has also set up a dedicated email address, GetWellRJ@sabres.com, for fans to send well-wishes and notes of encouragement.

One of the most recognizable voices in the NHL, Jeanneret’s calls are the stuff of legend. Here’s a sampling:

Latest Posts
  1. Oilers, Flames AHL affiliates to play outdoor game

    Sep 2, 2015, 11:30 PM EDT

    gshr_raley

    Bakersfield and Stockton will play in West Sacramento, Calif. on Dec. 18.

  2. Report: Hawks’ Kane has not been asked to waive his no-move clause

    Sep 2, 2015, 10:00 PM EDT

    Patrick Kane Patrick Kane

    As many as five teams are reportedly interested in acquiring the 26-year-old.

  3. Wings’ Franzen: ‘I’m excited to try to get back and have a good year’

    Sep 2, 2015, 7:05 PM EDT

    Johan Franzen Johan Franzen

    The Swede hopes to be cleared of his latest concussion in time for the season opener.

  4. Blackhawks sign Nordstrom to a one-year deal

    Sep 2, 2015, 3:35 PM EDT

    Edmonton Oilers v Chicago Blackhawks Getty Images

    The 23-year-old appeared in 38 games with Chicago last season.

  5. After recovering from serious bike crash, Sarich holds out comeback hope

    Sep 2, 2015, 1:57 PM EDT

    Colorado Avalanche v Calgary Flames Getty Images

    “I’m a realist. If nothing happens, that’s the way it is.”

  6. Trade target Cowen says Sens’ support has been ‘awesome’

    Sep 2, 2015, 12:05 PM EDT

    Jared Cowen

    “I know that it’s not just me that feels I can be a lot better and be the player that I know I’m going to be and I want to be.”

  7. Ex-‘Hawks goalie Raanta tees off on former club

    Sep 2, 2015, 10:59 AM EDT

    Antti Raanta Antti Raanta

    He also wanted them to get swept in the opening playoff round against Nashville, apparently.

  8. Report: Devils captain Salvador to retire this week (Update: Official)

    Sep 2, 2015, 9:54 AM EDT

    Bryce Salvador #24 of the New Jersey Devils skates against the New York Islanders at the Prudential Center on September 19, 2013 in Newark, New Jersey.
(September 18, 2013 - Source: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images North America) Getty Images

    After missing most of last season with a back injury.

  9. Sharks to honor original owner Gund with banner

    Sep 2, 2015, 9:00 AM EDT

    Columbus Blue Jackets v San Jose Sharks Getty Images

    It will be raised before the home opener on Oct. 10.

  10. Canes coach Peters making tweaks with emphasis on being more dangerous offensively

    Sep 1, 2015, 10:11 PM EDT

    Carolina Hurricanes v Buffalo Sabres Getty Images

    They were near the bottom of the league in that regard last season.

  11. Eichel planning to move in with Moulson

    Sep 1, 2015, 9:03 PM EDT

    Jack Eichel Getty Images

    “The way he offered his house to me shows what kind of person he is.”

  12. Lightning’s trip to Stanley Cup Final boosts season ticket sales

    Sep 1, 2015, 7:33 PM EDT

    Stamkos Getty Images

    They had strong attendance numbers last season too.

  13. St. Louis offers Upshall a professional tryout

    Sep 1, 2015, 6:04 PM EDT

    Scottie Upshall Getty Images

    The Blues have a vacancy with Patrik Berglund out for at least four months.

  14. Crosby, Toews, Weber, Price lead pack in NHL 16’s ratings

    Sep 1, 2015, 5:05 PM EDT

    2014 NHL Stadium Series - Pittsburgh Penguins v Chicago Blackhawks Getty Images

    A few players have leapfrogged Steven Stamkos.

  15. Marchand rehabbing from offseason elbow surgery

    Sep 1, 2015, 3:35 PM EDT

    Brad Marchand Getty Images

    He played through the injury in 2014-15.

Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. P. Kane (1711)
  2. P. Kessel (1473)
  3. M. Richards (1238)
  4. P. Datsyuk (1080)
  5. N. Backstrom (1049)