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Kevin Calabro, the former voice of the Sonics and local sports radio talk-show host, signed a three-year deal with ESPN Radio to serve as its lead NBA play-by-play announcer.

“I’m really happy to stay involved in the NBA,” he said. “Radio obviously is a medium that I know quite well. I broke in doing a lot of radio. I’ve been doing more television lately with the Pac-12, but I’ve always done ESPN Radio games whether it be a handful of games, the conference finals or as I did last year doing the entire season.

“It’s nice to get back to radio as a medium and I’m hoping to do some other things for ESPN as well, as the relationship evolves.”

Calabro, 57, will partner with Jon Barry, a 14-year NBA veteran, and Hall of Famer Hubie Brown on more than 40 regular-season and playoff broadcasts.

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In addition, Calabro will continue to call Pac-12 college basketball and football games on TV for the Pac-12 Networks.

Calabro, who had been with the Sonics since 1987, chose not to remain with the team when it relocated to Oklahoma City in 2008. He spent a few years hosting an afternoon radio talk show on 710 ESPN before returning to play-by-play work full time last year.

He’s also been a staunch advocate in efforts to bring the NBA to Seattle. However, this week new commissioner Adam Silver said there’s no immediate timetable for Seattle to receive a franchise.

“People need to stay patient,” Calabro said. “I know it’s difficult. It’s certainly difficult for me after we came so close last summer having to kind of play waiting out to get some word on when the NBA will either move a team to Seattle or expand.

“It doesn’t sound like it’s on the front burner, but we’re certainly in the kitchen. That’s the thing to remember. We’re right there. Patience is a virtue.”

Percy Allen: 206-464-2278 or

On Twitter @percyallen

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