UPDATED, 5:48 PM: Two days before the start of the 2021 NHL season, NBC Sports and its longtime hockey analyst Mike Milbury have parted ways. The news comes more than four months since he was suspended for “insensitive and insulting” remarks about women.
“We are grateful to Mike for all of his contributions to our coverage for 14 years,” NBC Sports said in a statement. “But he will not be returning to our NHL announce team. We wish him well.”
Milbury, a former NHL player and coach who long has been known for making controversial comments, had no immediate comment on being let go. He hasn’t tweeted since a week before his August 22 suspension from NBC Sports.
Milbury will be replaced on NBC Sports’ hockey broadcasts by another fiery ex-coach, Mike Babcock. Retired NHL veterans Ryan Callahan and Dominic Moore also are joining the network’s studio show this season.
The NHL’s delayed and truncated 2021 season faces off Wednesday with a triple-header on NBC Sports starting at 11:30 a.m. PT..
PREVIOUSLY, August 22: Former NHL player and coach Mike Milbury has been sidelined for the remainder of the Stanley Cup Playoffs after comments he made about women Thursday night on the NBC Sports Network.
Mike Milbury, who works as an analyst for the network, was on air during the Washington Capitals-New York Islanders game and speaking with co-host Brian Boucher about the success of the NHL’s bubble during the coronavirus pandemic.
“If you think about it, it’s a terrific environment with regard to — if you enjoy playing and enjoy being with your teammates for long periods of time, it’s a perfect place,” Boucher said.
“Not even any woman here to disrupt your concentration,” Milbury replied.
The comment was clipped and shared on social media by a woman named Alison. The footage has garnered 2.3 million views so far.
It’s 2020, and yet… 🤯 pic.twitter.com/d74TMlhkkP
— Alison (@AlisonL) August 21, 2020
On Saturday, NBC Sports PR posted a statement from Milbury in which he says, “I have decided to step away from my role at NBC Sports for the remainder of the StanleyCupPlayoffs.”
FROM MIKE MILBURY:
In light of the attention caused by my recent remark, I have decided to step away from my role at NBC Sports for the remainder of the StanleyCupPlayoffs. I do not want my presence to interfere with the athletes as they try to win the greatest trophy in sports.
— NBC Sports PR (@NBCSportsPR) August 22, 2020
In a statement to The Washington Post, NBC Sports said it was “disappointed about Mike’s insensitive comment.” According to the post, Milbury apologized for the comment.
The NHL posted a statement on Twitter calling Milbury’s remark “insensitive and insulting.”
A statement from the National Hockey League. pic.twitter.com/YCOTcoaK5l
— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) August 21, 2020
Milbury has in the past made numerous misguided remarks about gender, sexuality and sexual assault.
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