WWE Hall of Fame announcer Howard Finkel passed away at age of 69 on Thursday. His voice will be ingrained in the memories of many; a representative of loveable, affable, unique, and the greatest ring announcer of all time.
Finkel returning to announce CM Punk at Survivor Series 2011 at Madison Square Garden was one of the all-time great moments showing why his voice is forever untouchable.
One of the all-time great Howard Finkel moments 🙏
This is how much fans loved and respected him…
— WWE on BT Sport (@btsportwwe) April 16, 2020
In a statement released the WWE said: “WWE is saddened to learn that Howard Finkel has passed away at age 69.”
“In addition to his legendary tenure as a ring announcer, The Fink was an indispensable resource inside the WWE offices for his vast knowledge of sports-entertainment history. Well respected by current Superstars, WWE Legends and Hall of Famers, Finkel’s encyclopedic memory and kindness made him beloved among his colleagues. The Fink was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame on April 4, 2009.”
“WWE extends its condolences to Finkel’s family, friends and fans.”
When considering the greatest ring announcers in the history of sports and sports-entertainment, you’d be hard-pressed to name one better than Howard Finkel. A native of Newark, NJ, “The Fink” — a label that had been attached affectionately to Howard over the years — made his ring announcing debut at Madison Square Garden in 1977 for WWE’s predecessor, WWF.
By 1979, Finkel was the full-time ring announcer for WWWF, and when WWE was established in 1980, The Fink became the first — and eventually longest-serving — employee. Finkel’s distinctive voice was instantly recognizable, and for more than two decades Superstars such as The Ultimate Warrior, “Stone Cold” Steve Austin and more would have a title victory marked by The Fink’s signature call, “and NNNEEEWWW World Champion!”
Howard Finkel made every big moment bigger . Rest Easy Fink. pic.twitter.com/9T9CPI8R24
— Peter Rosenberg (@Rosenbergradio) April 16, 2020
Despite being a ring announcer, Finkel didn’t shy away from in-ring competition in certain circumstances. In 1995, he battled his longtime rival Harvey Wippleman in a Tuxedo Match on Raw, and later helped X-Pac shave Jeff Jarrett’s head in a Hair vs. Hair Match at SummerSlam 1998.
(with inputs from wwe.com)