‘My heart aches’: Mitchell Miller’s ex-classmate says NHL prospect harassed him for years | CBC Sports

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Isaiah Meyer-Crothers, who was bullied by NHL prospect Mitchell Miller in high school, says he hasn’t seen any proof that Miller has changed his ways.

In a statement released Wednesday by the Hockey Diversity Alliance, Meyer-Crothers, who is black and has developmental disabilities, said Miller texted to apologize and say he was doing community work to help youth.

“I said, ‘That’s fine, but where’s the proof?’ he didn’t give me any [proof]Meyer-Crothers said.

“All the lies that I’ve been told about him for so many years, I don’t believe what Mitchell told me.”

The statement came days after the Boston Bruins rescinded their entry-level contract offer to Miller, who was originally selected by Arizona in the fourth round of the 2020 draft.

Bruins president Cam Neely said Monday that the team “missed the ball” with its internal investigation of the defenseman.

Boston signed Miller on Friday, drawing widespread criticism from Bruins players, from captain Patrice Bergeron on down, as well as from the Boston fan base.

NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman also weighed in, saying Miller would not be eligible to play in the league without major changes.

The offer to Miller was rescinded Sunday night, and Neely said in a statement that the Bruins believed Miller’s conduct was an isolated incident and that the team changed course based on new information, particularly that the team had not spoken. with Meyer-Crothers or his family. .

In 2016, at age 14, Miller pleaded guilty to one count of assault and one count of violation of the Ohio Safe Schools Act. He and another teen were accused of making Meyer-Crothers eat candy after wiping it on a bathroom urinal, and surveillance video showed him being kicked and punched.

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NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman says newly signed Boston Bruins player Mitchell Miller is ineligible to play in the league. Miller pleaded guilty to assault when he was a teenager for bullying a classmate.

Meyer-Crothers said the abuse went on for years.

“Mitchell used to ask me to sit with him on the bus and then he and his friends would hit me over the head,” Meyer-Crothers said. “This happened all my time at school.

“When I was in high school, Mitchell would spit in my face and call me the ‘N word.’ I stopped telling because they called me a snitch and made fun of me.”

‘I can’t take any more of this’

Meyer-Crothers said Miller’s friends continued the bullying after Miller was expelled from school.

“Everyone thought it was cool, but I don’t see how anyone can be cool when you pick on someone and bully them your whole life,” Meyer-Crothers said.

Meyer-Crothers said she recently received racist and abusive messages on social media.

Boston Bruins president Cam Neely, seen during a 2017 news conference, said Monday that the team ‘dropped the ball’ with its internal investigation of Mitchell Miller after the Bruins rescinded his top-tier contract offer. entry to Miller, who was originally selected by Arizona in the fourth round of the 2020 draft. (Elise Amendola/The Associated Press)

“Mitchell is not my friend. My heart aches for what he did to me,” he said. “So he just wanted to tell everyone: When Mitchell says we’re friends, it’s not true.

“I can’t take any more of this.”

Before being drafted by Arizona, Miller sent a letter to all 31 NHL teams acknowledging what happened and apologizing for his behavior.

“When I was in eighth grade, I made an extremely bad decision and acted very immaturely,” Miller said in a statement. “I bullied one of my classmates. I deeply regret the incident and apologize to the individual. Since the incident, I have come to better understand the far-reaching consequences of my actions that I failed to recognize and understand nearly seven years ago.”

The Coyotes drafted Miller despite learning of his 2016 assault conviction. The team parted ways with Miller amid criticism after learning more about his harassment of Meyer-Crothers.

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