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Kings' Bob Miller to spend 76th birthday in familiar place

Kings' Bob Miller to spend 76th birthday in familiar place
Kings broadcaster Bob Miller celebrates with fans during the team's Stanley Cup parade in downtown Los Angeles in June. (Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times)

Bob Miller will spend a good chunk of his 76th birthday in front of a microphone, calling the play-by-play of the Kings' game against the Winnipeg Jets on FS West from Staples Center on Sunday night.

It's absolutely fitting that this will be a work day for Miller, who is in his 42nd season as the voice of the Kings and said he has no intention of reducing his workload by eliminating road games.

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But he acknowledged the other day that he once broached the subject of a lighter schedule in a conversation with Luc Robitaille, the Kings' president of business operations.

"I brought it up to the Kings a couple years ago, when my contract was up. I said, 'What if I just do home games?'" Miller said. "And Luc said, 'I don't think we're ready to do that yet,' and I said OK."

"That's not a big priority for me. The travel with the charters is so much easier now. And actually, I like going back and seeing the teams in the Eastern Conference and seeing the other broadcasters. The only thing that gets long sometimes is if it's a long trip and there are days you're not playing. Those are the worst. You're just sitting there, wasting time. So far, I still feel OK, and the travel is so much easier than it used to be."

Kings fans are so accustomed to hearing him, many complained in 2012—and again last spring—when the team got past the first round of the playoffs and national TV supplanted local telecasts, relegating Miller and analyst Jim Fox to the sidelines. On both occasions, the Kings arranged for Miller and Fox to separately call the Stanley Cup-clinching game for future commercial use and enjoyment.

Miller, who lives in West Hills with his wife, Judy, is under contract through this season. He said he agreed to tell the Kings by March 1 whether he wants to return next season.

The Kings without Bob Miller? Let's hope we don't have to think about that for a long time. Happy birthday, Bob, and many more.

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