When the Dragons were searching for a new public address announcer this off-season, the name Matthew Hurwitz was mentioned as a potential “best-case” scenario. Fortunately, Hurwitz had the availability and the strong desire to come on-board, lending his experience and professionalism to the top-notch game atmosphere that the Dragons hope to provide. Hurwitz has been with the Golden State Warriors as their PA announcer for 16 years. He has a strong love for sports and has announced for many sport organizations, colleges, and universities around the Bay Area. The Warriors’ announcer was one of many fans to attend the first ever MLS game back in 1996 here at Spartan Stadium and his love for soccer remains to this day. Burlingamedragons.com caught up with Hurwitz this week to get his thoughts on his life as a PA announcer and his excitement about joining the Dragons organization.
How did you get the Warriors gig?
I was their back-up announcer, having filled in to do a game in 1997. In December 2000, the announcer (at the time) resigned and I was asked to replace him for the remainder of the season, and subsequently asked to return on a permanent basis.
How do you view your job as a P.A announcer?
My job is to inform the audience of what is going on as it relates to the action that transpires on the court, never to tell them when and how to cheer. While I can help with the tone and tenor heard within the arena, I let the game itself and the fans dictate the energy and excitement.
What about the most difficult part of the job?
Staying focused and attentive to everything that is transpiring on the court. The NBA game is fast by nature and the Warriors have an even faster style of play with lots of scoring, so there is always something happening on the floor, whether that be baskets scored, fouls, free throw shooters, substitutions, replay reviews and all the announcements that come during a time out.
How about soccer, are you a soccer fan?
As a kid, I can remember going to see the original San Jose Earthquakes when they played in the old NASL and was in attendance for the very first MLS game on April 6, 1996 when the San Jose Clash hosted the D.C. United. While going to school in San Diego, I worked in the broadcasting dept. for the MISL’s San Diego Sockers, which was my first championship team to be a part of.
In general, what do you think of soccer in the Bay Area?
Having been born and raised here, I’ve always knows that there was some sort of soccer team here to go enjoy and watch, no matter what league they were representing. That’s the beauty of the Bay Area, that there will always be the opportunity for players to play and for fans to watch a team and support their local club in Northern California. The growth of leagues like the MLS and PDL is a testament to the popularity of the sport and the fan base here that is passionate about the game.
How did you hear about the Dragons?
While I wasn’t specifically familiar with the Dragons themselves, I was aware that the San Jose Earthquakes did have a U-23 PDL team supporting the MLS squad. So I was even more excited to find out that this club had relocated to nearby Burlingame, making it easier and more practical for local soccer fans like myself to be able to support the franchise.
What attracted you to the Dragons?
It was twofold. I have always liked watching and/or announcing soccer games, whether it was going to Spartan Stadium in San Jose or Kezar Stadium in San Francisco, so having the Dragons was a natural attraction to continue with the tradition as a fan. But more importantly, it was knowing that we have another franchise right in our own back yard that we could get behind and support, one that plays in an intimate stadium, with fan-friendly ticket prices and players whose progress we could track for years to come.