Jim Fox Appreciation Post + The Night I Almost Killed Jim Fox

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Over the last few seasons here on LGK, I've been giving Jim Fox a hard time for his relentless commentary, but the fact is, I love the guy. And I will be one sad hombre when he decides to hang it up.

For me the familiarity of his voice is what's most important. With all the great announcers we've had here in Los Angeles over the years, from Chick Hearn to Vin Scully to Bob Miller, he's the last link to all those great voices.

And, not to forget, I got to see him play in person many times, and he was a fun player to watch. Pops called him "The Spark Plug of the Kings"

Yeah, he likes to talk, and he talks a lot but he has a lot to say. And he knows what he's talking about. Jim has always been the consummate professional and I have a lot of respect for him. So I'm looking forward to hearing him call the game tonight.

And no story about Foxy would be complete without The Night I Almost Killed Jim Fox.

It was the first game of the Stanley Cup Finals in Los Angeles at the Great Western Forum in 1993. My cousin owed me some favors related to tickets (I got him front row and second row center seats to the Pink Floyd concerts at the Los Angeles Sports Arena in 1975 and 1980, respectively).

So he flew in from Hawaii with tickets to the game, about halfway up in the colonnade dead center and he brought with him some marijuana he was growing on the island of Maui.

I've never seen marijuana like this before in my life. It was bright blue and orange and smelled like a skunk.

I said, "Wow that looks really potent" and he said "Dude it's the best!" I said, "That's great, but I'm here to see a hockey game...couldn't you have just brought some normal marijuana, not something that looks like it would kill Snoop Dogg?"

Anyway, he had a little pipe and before the game we went to the top of the colonnade where there's a concrete plateau with enough room for some folding chairs. How do I know that? Jack Kent Cooke, the owner of the Lakers and the Kings gave my grandfather free seats to see the Los Angeles Lakers play the New York Knicks in the championship series in 1970, and we sat in folding chairs on that plateau (that was the game where Jerry West made a 60-foot shot at the buzzer to tie it in regulation. Sadly lost in overtime).

After two hits, I was so stoned I could barely walk. And complicating the matter was the fact that I had my brand new lizard-skin cowboy boots on.

We made it back to our seats and I was kind of freaking out and my cousin said, "Let's go get a couple of beers. That will calm you down". But was I like "I can't walk, dude. I'm too high. And I see Bob and Jim are doing a live pregame interview on the landing at the bottom of our stairs above the concourse. I'm afraid to go down there till they're done."

He told me to quit being a lightweight and get my butt out of the seat and go down to get some beer right now or we weren't going to make it back in time for puck-drop. So I started to attempt to navigate the stairs, but I was kind of wobbly.

And sure enough, right on cue, as we approached Bob and Jim live on the air... I tripped and headed right for Jim (and I'm a big guy, much bigger than Mr. Fox).

Fortunately my cousin, who's even bigger than me, grabbed me before I did a header straight into Jim. But it was a close one. I made it down to the lower stairs on the platform but not before noticing Jim, who was speaking live in the air at that moment, give me that look like "What the...?"

Can you imagine watching Jim and Bob live before the Championship game in LA and all the sudden some stoned fool goes plowing into him headfirst while he's trying to talk and knocks him down into the concourse? That would have made the evening news!

I wonder if Jim remembers that moment? I sure as hell do...
 
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We made it back to our seats and I was kind of freaking out and my cousin said, "Let's go get a couple of beers. That will calm you down". But was I like "I can't walk, dude. I'm too high. And I see Bob and Jim are doing a live pregame interview on the landing at the bottom of our stairs above the concourse. I'm afraid to go down there till they're done."

He told me to quit being a lightweight and get my butt out of the seat and go down to get some beer right now or we weren't going to make it back in time for puck-drop. So I started to attempt to navigate the stairs, but I was kind of wobbly.

Oh man, I made that walk in the same state many times at The Forum. That incline was a bitch both directions.
 
Oh man, I made that walk in the same state many times at The Forum. That incline was a bitch both directions.

Going up isn't as bad as going down. Especially with boots on. Smoking Maui Wowie.
 
Going up isn't as bad as going down. Especially with boots on. Smoking Maui Wowie.

No doubt, but either way the steps just always seemed to have some sort of greasy, liquidy residue that made walking even tougher.
 
My buddy and I took urine tracers before that game and pregamed beer in the parking lot. 1st period intermission we do the normal 16,000+ people running for the down stairs urinal troughs. So funny watching 20 smashed guys at the trough follow the blue p*ss upstream to you. Everyone with the WTF look on their faces. Me with an exaggerated drunk look of relief on my face "Does the beer here taste funny to you guys? Taste friggin weird to me." I'm 1/3 smashed at the time, two periods to go.
 
Foxy is great. He will always stop to chat for a minute if you "run into him" figuratively speaking.
 
I love Jim Fox! Though his broadcasts are a bit harder to listen to nowadays trying to corral Faust, but I digress.

I first met Jim Fox when I was like.. 9, in around 2000. I was a big Kings fan and we were at Staples and it was my first game. My mom and I got into an elevator and a guy walked in. I look at him and I say to my mom in a whisper, "Mom.. that's Jim Fox, from TV!!" and she smiled and said yes it is, and he heard me and looked over and waved and said hello.

Years later, in about 2011, I brought my wife to LA for the first time, and at her first hockey game she met her first celebrity, who happened to be Jim Fox. She had been watching him on the TV with me for awhile and recognized him immediately, and said, "It's Jim Fox!" and I said hey let's go talk to him! and she was like.. what? You can do that? So we went and said hi!

e8Csspy.jpg


Love Jim Fox. Listening to his broadcasts with Bob when I was in the military made me feel so at home. Such a huge Kings fan, and seeing him tear up in 2012 and 2014 on the broadcasts was so heart warming. Great guy.
 
My buddy and I took urine tracers before that game and pregamed beer in the parking lot. 1st period intermission we do the normal 16,000+ people running for the down stairs urinal troughs. So funny watching 20 smashed guys at the trough follow the blue p*ss upstream to you. Everyone with the WTF look on their faces. Me with an exaggerated drunk look of relief on my face "Does the beer here taste funny to you guys? Taste friggin weird to me." I'm 1/3 smashed at the time, two periods to go.

What the hell is a urine tracer? Do I even want to know?
 
Over the last few seasons here on LGK, I've been giving Jim Fox a hard time for his relentless commentary, but the fact is, I love the guy. And I will be one sad hombre when he decides to hang it up.

For me the familiarity of his voice is what's most important. With all the great announcers we've had here in Los Angeles over the years, from Chick Hearn to Vin Scully to Bob Miller, he's the last link to all those great voices.

And, not to forget, I got to see him play in person many times, and he was a fun player to watch. Pops called him "The Spark Plug of the Kings"

Yeah, he likes to talk, and he talks a lot but he has a lot to say. And he knows what he's talking about. Jim has always been the consummate professional and I have a lot of respect for him. So I'm looking forward to hearing him call the game tonight.

And no story about Foxy would be complete without The Night I Almost Killed Jim Fox.

It was the first game of the Stanley Cup Finals in Los Angeles at the Great Western Forum in 1993. My cousin owed me some favors related to tickets (I got him front row and second row center seats to the Pink Floyd concerts at the Los Angeles Sports Arena in 1975 and 1980, respectively).

So he flew in from Hawaii with tickets to the game, about halfway up in the colonnade dead center and he brought with him some marijuana he was growing on the island of Maui.

I've never seen marijuana like this before in my life. It was bright blue and orange and smelled like a skunk.

I said, "Wow that looks really potent" and he said "Dude it's the best!" I said, "That's great, but I'm here to see a hockey game...couldn't you have just brought some normal marijuana, not something that looks like it would kill Snoop Dogg?"

Anyway, he had a little pipe and before the game we went to the top of the colonnade where there's a concrete plateau with enough room for some folding chairs. How do I know that? Jack Kent Cooke, the owner of the Lakers and the Kings gave my grandfather free seats to see the Los Angeles Lakers play the New York Knicks in the championship series in 1970, and we sat in folding chairs on that plateau (that was the game where Jerry West made a 60-foot shot at the buzzer to tie it in regulation. Sadly lost in overtime).

After two hits, I was so stoned I could barely walk. And complicating the matter was the fact that I had my brand new lizard-skin cowboy boots on.

We made it back to our seats and I was kind of freaking out and my cousin said, "Let's go get a couple of beers. That will calm you down". But was I like "I can't walk, dude. I'm too high. And I see Bob and Jim are doing a live pregame interview on the landing at the bottom of our stairs above the concourse. I'm afraid to go down there till they're done."

He told me to quit being a lightweight and get my butt out of the seat and go down to get some beer right now or we weren't going to make it back in time for puck-drop. So I started to attempt to navigate the stairs, but I was kind of wobbly.

And sure enough, right on cue, as we approached Bob and Jim live on the air... I tripped and headed right for Jim (and I'm a big guy, much bigger than Mr. Fox).

Fortunately my cousin, who's even bigger than me, grabbed me before I did a header straight into Jim. But it was a close one. I made it down to the lower stairs on the platform but not before noticing Jim, who was speaking live in the air at that moment, give me that look like "What the...?"

Can you imagine watching Jim and Bob live before the Championship game in LA and all the sudden some stoned fool goes plowing into him headfirst while he's trying to talk and knocks him down into the concourse? That would have made the evening news!

I wonder if Jim remembers that moment? I sure as hell do...

Quite a story! Had you sobered up by the time John Leclair broke the Kings hearts in OT?
 
Those troughs man....How on earth did I see more than one dude pass out into them? The only ones that were worse were the ones at Ascot speedway.
 
Those troughs man....How on earth did I see more than one dude pass out into them? The only ones that were worse were the ones at Ascot speedway.

I didn't mind the troughs. You got in/out a lot faster which was nice.
 
Quite a story! Had you sobered up by the time John Leclair broke the Kings hearts in OT?

Yeah, unfortunately, I saw the whole ugly scene unfold. First there was Carbonneau grabbing the puck in the crease at the end of regulation. Should have been a penalty shot...undoubtedly taken by some guy named Wayne. The refs admitted they blew the call after the game, but what else is new? With no video review, we got screwed for the second time in two games.

But the ugliest scene happened on the way out of the Forum. I posted about it here before. One of those things I wish I could unsee...

...there was a kid, probably in his mid-teens, crying on the concourse after the loss. He buddy kept saying, "Shut up! Shut the f*** up! Shut up or I'm gonna punch you!"

He punched him. Hard. Which just made him cry harder.

What a team the Kings had. After blowing through Calgary, Vancouver and Toronto, and taking Game One against Montreal, I thought we would sweep the series. But the officials had other plans...
 
I love Jim Fox! Though his broadcasts are a bit harder to listen to nowadays trying to corral Faust, but I digress.

I first met Jim Fox when I was like.. 9, in around 2000. I was a big Kings fan and we were at Staples and it was my first game. My mom and I got into an elevator and a guy walked in. I look at him and I say to my mom in a whisper, "Mom.. that's Jim Fox, from TV!!" and she smiled and said yes it is, and he heard me and looked over and waved and said hello.

Years later, in about 2011, I brought my wife to LA for the first time, and at her first hockey game she met her first celebrity, who happened to be Jim Fox. She had been watching him on the TV with me for awhile and recognized him immediately, and said, "It's Jim Fox!" and I said hey let's go talk to him! and she was like.. what? You can do that? So we went and said hi!

e8Csspy.jpg


Love Jim Fox. Listening to his broadcasts with Bob when I was in the military made me feel so at home. Such a huge Kings fan, and seeing him tear up in 2012 and 2014 on the broadcasts was so heart warming. Great guy.

Nice picture!

I never got to meet Jim, but from what I understand he's very approachable.

It will be a sad day for me when he retires. No offense to Alex, but the broadcasts won't be the same without him.
 
Yeah, unfortunately, I saw the whole ugly scene unfold. First there was Carbonneau grabbing the puck in the crease at the end of regulation. Should have been a penalty shot...undoubtedly taken by some guy named Wayne. The refs admitted they blew the call after the game, but what else is new? With no video review, we got screwed for the second time in two games.

But the ugliest scene happened on the way out of the Forum. I posted about it here before. One of those things I wish I could unsee...

...there was a kid, probably in his mid-teens, crying on the concourse after the loss. He buddy kept saying, "Shut up! Shut the f*** up! Shut up or I'm gonna punch you!"

He punched him. Hard. Which just made him cry harder.

What a team the Kings had. After blowing through Calgary, Vancouver and Toronto, and taking Game One against Montreal, I thought we would sweep the series. But the officials had other plans...

Yikes! That sounds like criminal assault! I was at the game myself with my late Dad, sat about 10 rows right behind where the goal where the OT goal was scored. Didn't witness the incident you described afterwords, but I sure remember that game like it happened last week, not almost 30 (again, YIKES!) years ago.
 
I too have given some grief over the last few years to Jim but have much respect for him. My son was 12 years old was playing for the state AA championship at Toyota Center against San Jose. He faced 58 shots, I was watching from behind the net and after a shot to face mask and a pileup in his crease he turned around and spit into the net. Jim was there watching the games, we’ll my son lost one to nothing with 57 saves and he was not happy. Once the coaches open the dressing room I went in the talk to him, he had lost a tooth in the net scurmish and spit it into the net. My son loved listening to Jim and as I went outside the coach was talking to him because he was asking who the goalie was. He asked me if he could talk to him I said absolutely but told him he was not very happy. He spent almost twenty minutes sitting with him one on one, signed my sons goalie stick and frankly turned his day around. I will always be thankful for that day, my son has never told me exactly what they talked about because it’s between them. ����

Btw I was at that 1975 Pink Floyd concert at the Sports arena and had some pretty powerful weed. But the cops were dragging people out there so we had to be discrete.
 
Those troughs man....How on earth did I see more than one dude pass out into them? The only ones that were worse were the ones at Ascot speedway.

For the hardcores you throw up and take a p*ss at the same time
 
I too have given some grief over the last few years to Jim but have much respect for him. My son was 12 years old was playing for the state AA championship at Toyota Center against San Jose. He faced 58 shots, I was watching from behind the net and after a shot to face mask and a pileup in his crease he turned around and spit into the net. Jim was there watching the games, we?ll my son lost one to nothing with 57 saves and he was not happy. Once the coaches open the dressing room I went in the talk to him, he had lost a tooth in the net scurmish and spit it into the net. My son loved listening to Jim and as I went outside the coach was talking to him because he was asking who the goalie was. He asked me if he could talk to him I said absolutely but told him he was not very happy. He spent almost twenty minutes sitting with him one on one, signed my sons goalie stick and frankly turned his day around. I will always be thankful for that day, my son has never told me exactly what they talked about because it?s between them. ����

Btw I was at that 1975 Pink Floyd concert at the Sports arena and had some pretty powerful weed. But the cops were dragging people out there so we had to be discrete.

Cool story! Thanks for sharing!

Love him or hate him, Jim is a class act. And he knows the game.

He talks a lot, and sometimes I just want to scream "Shut the f*** up!" but Jim's like a family member at this point, and I love the guy.

Yeah, Los Angeles Police Chief Ed Davis decision to raid the Sports Arena for the Floyd concerts made international headlines. I was arrested on the final night and spent the show sitting inside of a paddy wagon backstage.

It was my first concert ever, and when we got to the arena, there was a van circling the parking lot with a banner that read:

"This is not a sanctuary for smoking pot. Enter the arena with drugs and you will be arrested."

They were repeating those words on a loudspeaker on the van. But all the idiots that turned around and went back to their cars were searched and subsequently arrested. I got to the security checkpoint and was searched thoroughly. I had an 8" bong down my pants, and when the security guard grabbed it, we were eye-to-eye. He suddenly pulled his hand back and said, "Sorry man!" and let me in. He must have thought it was something else.

On the fifth night, the entire row we were sitting in was taken out of the arena and put in the wagon. After the show, they let us go without charging us.

On one of their most famous bootlegs, Azimuth Coordinator, Roger Waters can be heard yelling at the security guards during the show. It was ugly.

That bootleg is one of the most famous ever because it contained the original follow-up to Dark Side of the Moon, that was never released. In fact, it was just five years ago a studio version of the opening track ("Raving and Drooling") was finally made available on a bootleg called The Extraction Tapes. There's no studio version of "Gotta be Crazy" (which was later released as "Dogs" in 1977 on Animals), but there is an early version of "Have a Cigar" with Roger on lead vocals.

If you still have the 25 cent comic book program they sold at those shows, it's worth a lot more than a quater today.

It's amazing after all these years I keep meeting people that attended those shows. Definitely the best concerts I have ever seen. I mean, Floyd played all of Dark Side, half of Meddle ("Echoes", for the encore), half of Animals ("Raving and Drooling" aka, "Sheep", and "Gotta Be Crazy") and over half of Wish You Were Here ("Shine On You Crazy Diamond" and "Have a Cigar", which they wrote and premiered in LA).

The (downloadable) comic book program:

Pink-Floyd-Comic-1.jpg


The long lost, unreleased studio version of Raving and Drooling, otherwise known as The Holy Grail to Floyd fans:



Pink Floyd switched record labels while they were in LA, which led to the infamous meeting with the record executive that asked the question "Oh, by the way, which one's Pink?" and inspired Waters to write "Have a Cigar".

Here's the archived review of the LA concerts (and the photograph that accompanied the article), by Richard Cromelin of the LA Times, who sat next to us on the second night. He never looked up from his notepad the whole night, and absolutely trashed the concert. Clueless A-Hole.

pink-floyd-pose-for-a-publicity-shot-circa-1973-picture-id73909162


https://www.latimes.com/entertainme...s-pink-floyd-1975-concert-19750425-story.html
 
One of my biggest regrets is being born too late to have seen the original Pink Floyd, Zeppelin, or The Who in concert.

And of course Jim Fox is the man. I just recently listened to the ATKM episode about Brown’s retirement. And 10 years later he still teared up talking about Brown handing him the Cup.
 

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