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Marty Turco showing he can hack it on TV

Goalie Marty Turco has no regrets about his year with Blackhawks. | Special Sun-Times

Goalie Marty Turco has no regrets about his year with the Blackhawks. | Special to the Sun-Times

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Updated: August 3, 2011 6:31PM

BOSTON — Veteran goalie ­Marty Turco doesn’t believe his playing days are over. But when they are, TV is an option for the always-approachable and opinionated Turco, who has been an analyst for NHL Network since the conference finals.

“I was a little apprehensive at first,” Turco said. “I’ve been asked the last few years with missing the playoffs and such. I just didn’t feel ready to even think about post-career.

“But this year, [my wife] Kelly and I talked about it. The opportunity to come to this network, knowing the guys and even knowing the host, ­David Amber, it seemed to make sense. Let’s go see what this is all about, see if I’m made for it.”

It turns out he is. Turco said the hardest part is knowing when to end his commentary and let others chime in. It also wasn’t easy getting accustomed to the meetings, long hours, production language, wearing an earpiece while talking, knowing where the cameras are and all the makeup.

“I knew it was going to be harder than it looks,” Turco said. “I didn’t know it was going to be that difficult. To say the least, I feel like I have room to improve. It’s been an eye-opening experience. To see a show put together was really unique.”

NHL Network’s producers like what Turco brings, and he likes the “College GameDay” feel of the Stanley Cup finals. He even enjoyed getting showered with boos in Vancouver. It was as if he were still with the Blackhawks or Dallas Stars.

“They chanted like I was standing in my crease,” Turco said. “Vancouver fans don’t forget. I threw some snarls out there to see if they’d back down. Sometimes they did.”

The plan is to stay in the crease.

“I have no plans to be finished,” said Turco, 35. “I anticipate playing next year and for as long as I can.”

Hawks general manager Stan Bowman told the Sun-Times on Wednesday that he’s comfortable going with Corey Crawford and Alexander Salak next season. So Turco likely will be elsewhere. He has no regrets after signing with the Hawks last season.

“We love Chicago. We’d live there in a heartbeat,” Turco said. “They say it may not have been a great hockey-card season, but the experience and memories were top-notch.”

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