It’s been over twenty-four hours since hockey broadcaster Don Cherry was let go from Sportsnet after his public tirade on Coach’s Corner last Saturday.
During morning skates and practices on Tuesday, plenty of NHL players were asked their opinion on the 85-year-old’s firing and one former Toronto Maple Leaf offered some interesting words.
Now a member of the Colorado Avalanche, Nazem Kadri appeared to be sympathetic towards Cherry.
“[He] has been there for so long,” Kadri told The Denver Post. “It’s going to be hard to see [Hockey Night in Canada] without him, that’s definitely unfortunate.”
“I know Grapes and I don’t think it came across like everyone is making it sound. I think with what he said, it was maybe just said incorrectly. People maybe took it out of context a little bit. I know Grapes is a great person and I’m sad to see him go.”
Giving him the benefit of the doubt, Kadri suggests the rant was taken out of context.
Of course, the Avalanche forward previously received admiration from Cherry and has a personal connection to the now-unemployed broadcaster.
Kadri continued his response by reflecting on how hockey has become more diverse since Cherry made his first appearance on national television.
“The sport brings everyone together with the team values and the work ethic,” Kadri said. “It taught me a lot about those two things. Now, I go watch my little cousins play in their youth development programs and there are a variety of ethnicities on their team. When I was growing up, I was kind of the only one. It’s good to see now.”
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