Behind The Scenes

ESPN Radio’s Dan ‘The Duke’ Davis rides into the (Florida) sunset

He was in the Orange Bowl in 1984 when “Doug Flutie” and “Hail Mary” were forever etched into the sports lexicon.

He was here in Bristol for the launch of the ESPN Radio Network in 1992.

Truth be told, Dan “The Duke” Davis has been on the scene for countless big moments in sports, covering just about every major event from The Masters to the Olympics and from the Super Bowl to the Kentucky Derby.

On Friday afternoon at approximately 3:30 p.m., The Duke will deliver his final SportsCenter update in the midst of ESPN Radio’s The Scott Van Pelt Show.

There will be no fanfare, no tearful goodbye. Just the sports news of the day delivered by one of the most respected figures in all of radio.

“He’s got the best pipes in the business,” said Colin Cowherd.

“He’s been my regular update my entire time here at ESPN. The Duke even sounds good when he yawns.”

Davis, 69, has spent his entire five decade-long career in New England after beginning it with WEMJ in Laconia, NH.

His call of the Flutie Hail Mary seemingly has been played more often than Jingle Bells and his dry wit and genial manner are legendary.

ESPN is where Davis found his shangri-la.

“ESPN is everything a sports guy could want, and more,” Davis says. “Hard to claim that what I’ve done for years qualifies as ‘work.’”

“Dan has been the great constant of ESPN Radio,” said Mike Tirico.

“I remember working with Dan when the network launched, and getting a chance to put a face with that unmistakable voice which is cemented in sports lore with the great call of the ‘Flutie Hail Mary’ in 1984.

“He is the best update man sports radio has ever known. No one delivers a story like Dan. Someone will work his shift, but no one will replace ‘The Duke.’”

The Duke plans to continue to pick up some radio assignments here and there, but most of his time will be spent in Florida working on his golf game.

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