As an avid Cavs fan, I grew up watching the Cleveland Cavs on tv like most kids at the time. The most amazing part of watching the Cavs on the court was listening to the man who was so calm yet exciting at the same time. That man was legendary commentator/play-by-play man, Joe Tait.

For those not from Cleveland, allow me to put things into perspective. Joe Tait basically called the Cleveland Cavs games via tv or radio for most if not all of their existence and they’ve been around since 1970. He also called the Indians to add to his amazing resume as well.

The reason Tait is so legendary and respected in the sports world is that, in my personal opinion, he is one of the top-three sports commentators/play-by-play people of all time! The other two being Keith Jackson and Gus Johnson. Often times Joe would call the Cavs games by himself which as this reporter personally knows, is not an easy task.

Joe would basically have you relaxed as games he called would start, but by mid-first quarter, phrases like “three-ball” and         “got another one” would have you on the edge of your seat for the rest of the night! By the end of the evening, you were waiting to find out when Joe would call the next game just so you could hear those phrases again.

Joe would also call the Mount Union Purple Raiders games from time to time as he was the play-by-play man on several national championship seasons. Yes, Joe was battling cancer and kidney disease, but he never let it get him down. Sadly, he passed at 83, but the reason I said he was gone too soon is simple. The Cleveland sports world will NEVER be the same between losing him and Fred McCleod. Hearing Cleveland sports on local tv and radio will never be the same or have the same flare as hearing Joe’s voice over a Cavs three-pointer, rebound, slam dunk and even a Purple Raiders touchdown.

You have earned your place in Cleveland and sports lore. Rest easy, Joe Tait.

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