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updated: 5/17/2019 5:27 PM

O’Donnell: Movin’ on up with Jason Benetti, Bill Cullen and Boston’s Bruins

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  • White Sox TV play-by-play man Jason Benetti.

    White Sox TV play-by-play man Jason Benetti.
    Joe Faraoni/ESPN Images



Jason Benetti -- the 35-year-old White Sox TV play-by-play man -- is an extraordinarily bright young fellow (with a law degree).

But he probably could have left even "Jeopardy!" James Holzhauer dazzled during a recent national interview when he referenced mythic game-show host Bill Cullen among myriad career and life influences.

Cullen -- for those not familiar with the pop cultural catacombs of the Eisenhower-JFK years -- was a seminal American TV personality who was never shown walking on camera because of residual effects from a childhood battle with polio.

In the end, he hosted no fewer than 23 network game shows, the most famous being the original NBC/ABC run of "The Price is Right."

"He walked with a limp," said Benetti, who seems to hope the day will come when any unnecessary public note of his cerebral palsy will vaporize.

"So they brought contestants to him for any bonus rounds because so much of it is about perception and judgment.

"I don't want anybody to think things they don't have to think. People with 'CP' have brains and they're able to do a lot of things."

To frame Benetti's intellectual quest, Cullen, age 70, died in 1990. Benetti was born in 1983.

With his talent and determination, Sox fans better enjoy him while they can.

THE BRILLIANCE EXTENDED from rink to HDTV screen the other night when the Boston Bruins closed out a 4-0 sweep of Carolina in the Eastern Conference Finals with a 4-0 victory.

If the Bruins don't win the Stanley Cup, it's a crime against excellence. And NBC Sports has kept synchronized golden standards.

On ice, goalie Tuukka Rask -- with a .956 save percentage in the postseason -- appeared about as flappable as a Finn on cross-country skis.

Hub A-line of Patrice Bergeron, Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak accounted for all four goals and played both ends as if the spirit of prime-time Bobby Orr was driving their skates.

As for NBC, Doc Emrick was Doc Emrick and analyst Mike Milbury was good Mike Milbury.

The Peacock studio panel of Patrick Sharp -- bless 'im -- Keith Jones and Liam McHugh was no frills, no Kewpie and just marvelously informative hockey experts.

The Bruins are now poised to complete a rare civic triple vs. the winner of the St. Louis-San Jose WC sweepstakes (Game 5, NBC-5, Sunday, 2 p.m.):

A World Series championship (Red Sox), an NFL crown (Patriots) and a Stanley Cup in the same sports cycle.

That hasn't been done since 1935-36 when the Tigers, Lions and Red Wings combined to bring the most charmed hood bonnets to Detroit.

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