Best jobs in Columbus: Blue Jackets announcer Greg Murray and arena host Mike Todd

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From the August 23, 2012 edition

You two have been friends since college. What’s it like to work with a friend?

Todd: We’re working in front of 18,000 people on a nightly basis. It’s good to know that you’ve got someone there that you trust. If you’re screwing up, they’re right there screwing up with you.

What’s the best perk of the job?

Murray: I have the best seat in the whole building [right next to the penalty boxes], and they actually hand me money to sit there. That’s not too bad.

Todd: Greg has a file on every player who has sat in those penalty boxes and the colorful language and colorful metaphors they use.

And what are the perks of yours, Mike?

Todd: There are too many to mention. It’s an honor and a privilege to be here and to be paid for something you love to do. It’s these little moments that’ll make you happy. Last year there was this little girl who through the Blue Jackets Foundation was in the hospital having multiple operations. I’d seen her at events, and her mom called and asked me to come visit her. What an absolute treat to come and try to make a kid’s day.

What’s one of the hard parts?

Murray: I go over players’ names with the on-air broadcasters, because if I’m going to pronounce it wrong, we’re all going to pronounce it wrong. We still go over names because that’s one of those things that hockey fans know. If you mess it up, they’ll take you out and hang you.

How often are you recognized around town?

Murray: Usually it’s in a store. I’ll be saying something to my wife or my boys, and people will shoot you that look, because they’re used to hearing you. A lot of times they’ll just give you that look and say, “Excuse me. You sound really familiar.”

Todd: With Greg and I, the fans own a part of us. He’s Mr. “Jackets on the Power Play.” People come up and say, “Hey! You’re that Blue Jackets guy.” I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been mistaken for [Blue Jackets anthem singer] Leo Welsh.

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