Lisa Byington makes history as Bucks' new TV play-by-play announcer

Fiserv Forum stands Thursday March 12, 2020, in Milwaukee. The NBA has suspended its season. The Milwaukee Bucks had been scheduled to play the Boston Celtics on Thursday night at the arena. (Morry Gash / AP)

MILWAUKEE — Lisa Byington is making history as the Milwaukee Bucks' new play-by-play voice on their television broadcasts.

The Bucks announced the hiring Wednesday and said Byington is the first woman to work as a full-time television play-by-play announcer for any major men's professional sports team.

Byington replaces Jim Paschke, who retired after 35 seasons as the team's main television play-by-play broadcaster.

"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 a statement released by the team. "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.''

Earlier this year, Byington became the first female play-by-play broadcaster for the NCAA men's basketball tournament. She was a men's and women's soccer play-by-play announcer for NBC Sports in the 2021 Olympics and also did play-by-play for the Women's World Cup on Fox in 2019.

The Bucks' broadcast crew also includes Marques Johnson and Steve Novak as analysts and Zora Stephenson as a sideline reporter. Last season, Stephenson became the first woman to work as a play-by-play announcer for the Bucks when she filled in for Paschke for one game.

Byington worked as a sideline reporter for the NCAA men's basketball tournament on CBS and Turner Sports from 2017-19. She also has been a play-by-play broadcaster on NBA and WNBA games.

She became the first female play-by-play broadcaster for a Big Ten Network college football game in 2017.

Byington has broadcast games for FOX Sports, FS1, Big Ten Network, CBS, Turner Sports, Pac-12 Network, ESPN and the SEC Network in both play-by-play and reporter roles. She played basketball and soccer while attending Northwestern University.

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