DETROIT (CBS Detroit) After he was dumped from his duties as an announcer on FOX Sports Detroit, former Red Wings star and Hall of Famer Larry Murphy, 52, called 97.1 The Ticket’s Stoney and Bill to discuss his next act.
“The wound’s still fresh, so I’m just trying to let the dust settle and kind of figure out what the best thing to do is,” Murphy said.
He added he was blindsided by the loss of his job after 10 seasons on the air, saying, “It was definitely a surprise and a shock to say the least.”
Murphy added the news came in the form of a phone call telling him he would be “relieved of his duties” because ratings were not where the network wanted them to be. Co-host Mike Stone asked if the ratings were more contingent on the team’s recent record, and the lockout, and less to do with the game analysis. “I have no clue,” Murphy said, adding, “I’m just focused on doing the best job I can do, I don’t even know what the numbers are to be perfectly honest… When you do a good show, you feel proud about it and hopefully people are watching, people are listening and that’s just the way I approached it.”
Fox Sports Detroit released this statement about their decision to terminate Murphy: “We wanted our primary team of Mickey Redmond and Ken Daniels to call the remaining games as the Red Wings make a push for the playoffs. We thought it was only fair to let Larry know as soon as possible that he would not be scheduled for any more assignments. We thank Larry for his contributions to our telecasts over the years and we wish him well.”
On a happier front, Murphy said he’s been bolstered by the support of fans, some of whom formed an online petition to get him back on the air. “It really has helped,” Murphy said of the petition that has 2,866 signatures.
Is he afraid of backlash over going public with his firing?
“I didn’t want to hide, I wanted to get out there and if anybody had a question or anything, I was going to answer it,” Murphy said, adding, “It’s still settling in, I’m trying to decide what to do next. I thought I was going to be doing this for a long time so I wasn’t ready for this.”
Co-host Bill McAllister read some texts from fans supporting Murphy, with Jeff from Royal Oak saying, “Love Murphy, definitely making my feelings heard.”
That kind of support, Murphy said, is helping him stay positive. “That really made me feel much better, you just have to chalk it up, that’s just the way this business works,” Murphy said.