FRISCO - There are exciting additions on the field for FC Dallas in 2014, and also an exciting addition in the booth as FCD announced last week that legendary MLS goalkeeper Kevin Hartman will join the broadcast team in 2014 beginning with Saturday’s season opener.
“I’ve had the same schedule and same routine for probably the past 17 years of my life and so I was always interested in seeing life through a different window and I feel like this opportunity is a superb fit,” Hartman told FCDallas.com. “Everybody knew how committed and passionate that I was when I played the name and now it’s a phenomenal way to stay involved in the league and maybe show some of that passion through the commentating.”
Hartman has literally seen it all in his illustrious MLS career spanning an MLS-record 416 matches including two MLS Cup championships as well as manning the nets for FC Dallas in their 2010 MLS Cup appearance. Kevin hopes to convey some of those insights you can only learn through a wide-ranging career while letting the viewer make their own observations as well.
“I’m most interested in trying to help the observer along and then stay out of the way of the game. Soccer’s the beautiful game and the majority of the time it speaks for itself,” said Hartman. “I think as the viewing of the game continues to evolve here in the U.S., it’s crucial to capture the casual observer while trying to avoid the cliché comparisons to other major US Sports.”
The 39-year-old joins a myriad of MLS legends who have moved into the commentating booth, players that Kevin played both with and against over the years.
“I’m really good friends with Cobi Jones and Brian Dunseth and talk to them both on regular occasions and in some broadcast meetings I had the opportunity to talk to Taylor Twellman and then obviously Alexi Lalas and I go a ways back,” said Hartman. “One of the most interesting conversations I had was with [ESPNFC’s] Adrian Healey and he said congratulations on having the best two jobs ever.”
Hartman returns home to Frisco after a one-year stint with the New York Red Bulls, while his family never left the north Texas area. Having played for FCD while Oscar Pareja was a member of the staff, Kevin is certainly familiar with the Colombian’s infectious style and he’s looking forward to what should be a young and exciting team in 2014. Kevin will be scarfing the Lamar Hunt Statue in the traditional pre-game ceremony as well as mingling with the fans at Cocktails & Cleats on Thursday night in downtown Dallas.
“I’m looking forward to how the team plays. There’s a renewed spirit here, but it’s not just because the fact that it’s a new year,” said Hartman. “I know that the passion with which Oscar coached and played the game is going to be infectious and it’s going to be something that the fans are going to see and the players have already seen through preseason. I think we’re all just champing at the bit now to get kicked off on the 8th.”