Byington will be the first woman to serve as a play-by-play voice for a major men’s professional sports team, per the Bucks announcement. It is yet another milestone for Byington, who became the first woman to call a men’s NCAA Tournament game earlier this year.
The Northwestern grad has plenty of experience calling huge sporting events. Byington has worked for just about every major sports broadcast company in the country, calling Big Ten basketball and football, Olympic women’s soccer, Women’s World Cup, and WNBA games. Now, she becomes the voice of the Bucks, one of the NBA’s top franchises over the last few years.
There’s been an outpouring of support for Byington after today’s news. From Twitter:
One of my favs! I’ve known and worked with @LisaByington for 13 years. She’s crushed every opportunity earned, put in the work and deserves this moment. An amazing talent and a amazing person. Nice going @Bucks
Congrats, Lisa. https://t.co/ILeyAPiXMF
— Brian Anderson (@BAndersonPxP) September 15, 2021
— Jeff Levering (@JLevering4) September 15, 2021
A championship broadcaster and person for the reigning NBA champs! So excited for Lisa, who is simply outstanding and has been an amazing mentor/friend to me and so many. She is going to be incredible! Milwaukee, you’re in for an amazing TV experience. Congratulations LB. https://t.co/TmlLJaoNxO
— John Fanta (@John_Fanta) September 15, 2021
👏👏👏 Lisa climbed a lot of mountains on her way to this opportunity. This is a big day for sports broadcasting. https://t.co/UyxlYf8tgO
— Matthew Coller (@MatthewColler) September 15, 2021
This is pretty damn cool. Still amazed how long we had Lisa in Lansing. https://t.co/y6GR9mkxpj
— Graham Couch (@Graham_Couch) September 15, 2021
— Marly Rivera (@MarlyRiveraESPN) September 15, 2021
— Stephen Watson (@WISN_Watson) September 15, 2021
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) September 15, 2021
“I understand the groundbreaking nature of this hire, and I appreciate the fact that during this process that aspect was addressed, but never made a primary focus,” Byington said in the Bucks’ statement about her hire. “In fact, I applaud the Bucks for taking the first steps toward making hires like this more of the norm in the NBA. Because it’s time.”
Milwaukee Bucks president Peter Feigin also acknowledged the history that Lisa Byington and the franchise are making with the move, while noting that it is her impressive ability as a broadcaster that landed her the job.
“We are so excited to welcome Lisa to the Bucks family and to bring such a talented play-by-play announcer to our broadcast team. Lisa’s extensive television broadcasting background, including her play-by-play work for high-level NCAA basketball on several national networks, makes her the perfect choice to take on this major role. While we appreciate the significance of selecting Lisa, and we celebrate this historic moment, Lisa earned this position based on her extraordinary skills and experience. We look forward to Lisa becoming the voice of the Bucks.”
The Bucks went 46-26 last season, earning the third seed in the Eastern Conference Playoffs. Led by former MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo, the team ran through the Miami Heat, Brooklyn Nets, and Atlanta Hawks, before beating the Phoenix Suns in a six game NBA Finals series to capture the franchise’s first title in 50 years.