December 17, 2011
A day after NBC hockey analyst Mike Milbury was accused of assaulting a 12-year old hockey player who was getting into it with his son last weekend, the former NHL player and general manager defended himself in an interview with the Boston Globe's Kevin Paul Dupont.
As Milbury waits to see if he'll be charged with assault and battery, he steadfastly denied any idea of physical abuse on the player.
From the Globe:
''I want to be clear about a couple of things,'' said Milbury. ''No one was punched, kicked, or assaulted in any way. I know the 'Mad Mike' image that I have and all that. I love the game, I'm passionate about it, but I don't smack kids around. I grabbed the other kid by the sweater to stop a fight and, yeah, I swore at him. That's it. That's what I did.
''And ..... this was also after watching my kid get verbally bullied by the other player for over two hours. It was the third time that night that Jake and the kid got into it, and that was the last straw for Jake. I mean, what kid can take that?''
The tipping point, according to Milbury, was when the alleged victim chirped his son about potentially using his shoe, a reference to the infamous 1979 brawl in Madison Square Garden between the Boston Bruins and New York Rangers. That night, the brawl traveled into the stands and saw Milbury beating a fan with his own shoe, a highlight that hasn't been forgotten for 22 32 years.
Milbury, who after speaking with CBC and NBC on Friday, did not appear on Hockey Night in Canada's "Hot Stove" segment on Saturday and will not be on any of NBC's upcoming hockey broadcasts until the matter is officially past him.
Photo credit: Canadian Press