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Front & Center: Chris Berman on his favorite Candlestick Park memories before stadium’s MNF finale

When the host 49ers beat the Cowboys for the NFC Championship on Jan. 10, 1982, ESPN's Chris Berman was there amidst the madness in Candlestick Park. (ESPN)
When the host 49ers beat the Cowboys for the NFC Championship on Jan. 10, 1982, ESPN’s Chris Berman reported as fans celebrated in Candlestick Park. (ESPN)

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Editor’s note: Welcome to another edition of Front Row’s #TBT: Throwback Thursday.

ESPN’s Monday Night Football season finale – the Atlanta Falcons versus the San Francisco 49ers (Dec. 23, 8:25 p.m. ET) – is the final regular-season NFL game at one of sports’ most iconic venues: Candlestick Park. Home to the 49ers since 1971 and Major League Baseball’s Giants from 1960-1999, Candlestick is no stranger to many ESPNers, especially Chris Berman. The longtime NFL host has covered a handful of the iconic events in the stadium’s 53-year history and will return this week for Monday Night Countdown (ESPN, 6:30 p.m.).

Berman, who will anchor MNF pregame coverage alongside 49ers Hall of Fame quarterback Steve Young, Keyshawn Johnson, Ray Lewis and a number of special 49ers guests, covered “The Catch”– the famous Joe Montana-to-Dwight Clark touchdown pass in the 1981 NFC Championship game. In fact, his postgame report (pictured above), surrounded by jubilant fans on the field, remains one of the signature moments of his broadcasting career.

Berman also covered the earthquake before Game 3 of the 1989 World Series and the final Giants home baseball game in 1999. He also hosted the public memorial service for legendary 49ers coach Bill Walsh at Candlestick, on the field that has since been renamed in Walsh’s honor.

Berman, who even has an old patch of Candlestick sod in his backyard in Connecticut, offered a personal tribute to the stadium last week during his 2 Minute Drill (aka The Swami) segment on SportsCenter.

In anticipation of this final visit to the famed stadium by the Bay, Berman discusses his memories of Candlestick Park in this Front and Center podcast.

Editor’s Note: To read more ESPN stories and anecdotes about Candlestick, click here.

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