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NHL condemns NBC Sports' Mike Milbury for comment about women

Aug. 21 (UPI) -- The NHL condemned "insensitive and insulting" comments that NBC Sports analyst Mike Milbury made about women during the network's broadcast Thursday night.

"The National Hockey League condemns the insensitive and insulting comment that Mike Milbury made during [Thursday] 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."

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During NBC's telecast of the New York Islanders' series-clinching win over the Washington Capitals, Milbury and fellow analyst Brian Boucher were discussing the advantages of the league's postseason bubble amid 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.

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"Not even any woman here to disrupt your concentration," Milbury responded.

In a statement released through NBC Sports on Friday, Milbury apologized for his comment and said it was a "regrettable mistake."

"It was not my intention to disrespect anyone," Milbury said. "I was trying to be irreverent and took it a step too far. It was a regrettable mistake that I take seriously."

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Later Friday, a spokesperson for NBC Sports told the Washington Post that Milbury would not be calling Friday's game between the Philadelphia Flyers and Montreal Canadiens. The network said it was disappointed with Milbury's "insensitive comment."

Milbury, 68, previously has been flagged for making insensitive remarks about women during broadcasts. In 2011, he referred to Vancouver Canucks players Daniel and Henrik Sedin as "Thelma and Louise."

In the 2012 season, the broadcaster said Pittsburgh Penguins coach Dan Bylsma should have "taken off his skirt and gone over there" during an in-game altercation.

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Milbury played 12 seasons in the NHL -- all for the Boston Bruins. He later served as assistant general manager and head coach for the Bruins, as well as general manager and head coach of the Islanders.

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