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Al McCoy credit Barry Gossage, NBAE.jpg

Grand Marshal 

Al McCoy

McCoy has been a Glendale resident for over 45 years.  He has been called the dean of NBA play-by-play announcers and is in his 48th memorable season as “The Voice of the Suns,” nearly the length of the franchise’s existence and the longest consecutive run as a team’s broadcaster in NBA history. At halftime of the game on March 3, 2017, McCoy earned the team’s highest honor as he became the 15th person inducted into the Phoenix Suns Ring of Honor. 


McCoy first hit the air during a preseason game on September 27, 1972, and has been synonymous with Suns basketball ever since. From “Shazam” to “Zing Go the Strings” to “Heartbreak Hotel,” McCoy has cultivated an unparalleled style.


McCoy will forever be remembered for his call in the 1976 Suns-Celtics NBA Finals at Boston Garden when he had to fling an inebriated fan off his lap as he was describing “The Shot Heard ‘Round The World” by Garfield Heard that sent the game into the third of three overtimes.


The 2019-20 season marks his 48th as he calls play-by-play action on Arizona Sports Radio and the Suns radio network. McCoy’s tenure with the Suns is the longest consecutive run with one team among NBA broadcasters in league history. His many contributions to the sport were recognized when he received the 18th Annual Curt Gowdy Media Award from the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame during Enshrinement Weekend in September 2007 in Springfield, Mass. The Suns honored him with the Al McCoy Media Center, dedicated in October 2007.


In 2019, the readers of Phoenix Magazine named McCoy the best play-by-play announcer in their annual “Best of the Valley” issue for the 21st consecutive year. He’s the only broadcaster to win the award since it debuted in 1999. McCoy was honored with a Silver Circle Award from the Arizona chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the House of Broadcasting (a radio and television museum). He also became the first play-by-play announcer to be inducted into the Arizona Broadcasters Association Hall of Fame on Oct. 19, 2004.


McCoy’s broadcasting career began in 1951 at KJFJ Radio in Webster City, Iowa when he was a freshman at Drake University. In 1958, he arrived in Arizona to do play-by-play for the Triple-A Phoenix Giants baseball club.  He has also covered Phoenix Roadrunners hockey, Arizona State football and basketball and filled in as a backup for the Arizona Diamondbacks. McCoy added a call of the Phoenix Mercury to his distinguished resume, providing play-by-play on NBA TV for a playoff game on the Mercury’s run to the 2014 WNBA title. 


A native of Williams, Iowa, a tiny farming community, McCoy was a member of his high school basketball team and was influenced by legendary broadcasters Harry Caray, Bert Wilson and Jack Brickhouse. He received his degree in drama-speech from Drake University and performed graduate work at the University of Iowa. In 1994, McCoy received Drake’s Alumni Achievement Award and in 2015, he was included in an interactive exhibit at the Iowa Hall of Pride.


He and his beloved wife Georgia, a Valley artist who passed away in 2012, have three sons: Mike, and twins Jay and Jerry. A culinary critic, he is the club’s expert on gourmet restaurants around the league. McCoy is an accomplished jazz pianist.

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