NBC Sports commentator Mike Milbury isn’t calling Friday night’s Game 6 between the Philadelphia Flyers and Montreal Canadiens in Toronto after he made an on-air comment the night before that was viewed as misogynistic.
“Mike is not working tonight,” an NBC Sports spokesman said via email. “We will announce our commentary teams for this weekend’s games tomorrow morning.”
Eddie Olczyk was the analyst for the game.
Near the end of the New York Islanders’ victory against the Washington Capitals on Thursday night at Scotiabank Arena, Milbury and the NBCSN crew were discussing the upside for players being in a bubble environment during the Stanley Cup playoffs
“If you enjoy being with your teammates for a long period of time, it’s a perfect place,” analyst Brian Boucher said. Milbury then added, “Not even any women here to disrupt … your concentration.”
The remark quickly drew criticism.
“The National Hockey League condemns the insensitive and insulting comment that Mike Milbury made during last night’s broadcast and we have communicated our feelings to NBC,” the league said in a statement Friday. “The comment did not reflect the NHL’s values and commitment to making our game more inclusive and welcoming to all.”
NBC Sports said it was “disappointed about Mike’s insensitive comment” and has addressed it with Milbury.
“It was not my intention to disrespect anyone,” Milbury said in an apology released Friday through the network. “I was trying to be irreverent and took it a step too far. It was a regrettable mistake that I take seriously.”
Earlier in the playoffs, Milbury was critical of Boston Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask’s decision to leave the Toronto bubble to be with his family.
Milbury, a former NHL player and coach, has been with NBC Sports since 2008.