NBC Sports Defends Bode Miller Interview: ‘Our Intent Was To Convey The Emotion’

NBC Sports Defends Bode Miller Interview: 'Our Intent Was To Convey The Emotion'

NBC Sports released a statement of support for Christin Cooper following a controversial interview with Bode Miller

In the wake of a viewer backlash, NBC Sports defended reporter Christin Cooper's interview with Bode Miller that drove the Olympic skier to break down in tears.

“Our intent was to convey the emotion that Bode Miller was feeling after winning his bronze medal,” NBC Sports said in a statement to TheWrap. “We understand how some viewers thought the line of questioning went too far, but it was our judgment that his answers were a necessary part of the story. We’re gratified that Bode has been publicly supportive of Christin Cooper and the overall interview.”

Also read: NBC Sports Reporter Drives Bode Miller to Tears With Questions About His Dead Brother (Video)

Miller stuck up for the reporter amid the firestorm that followed the emotional interview that some viewers faulted for being badgering.

“I appreciate everyone sticking up for me,” Miller wrote. “Please be gentle w christin cooper, it was crazy emotional and not all her fault.”

I appreciate everyone sticking up for me. Please be gentle w christin cooper, it was crazy emotional and not all her fault. #heatofthemoment

— Bode Miller (@MillerBode) February 17, 2014

 

Appearing on “Today” Monday morning, Miller also addressed the controversy in an interview with Matt Lauer.

Also read: Bob Costas Eyes Monday Return as NBC's Olympics Host

“We saw a very emotional side of you, Bode, after the race, not only in a tweet you sent out, but also in that interview that’s getting a lot of attention, and the interviewer is getting attention as well. Christin Cooper is being criticized for some by pushing too far on questions about the death of your brother,” Lauer said. “I just would like your take on that?”

“I’ve known Christin a long time and she is a sweetheart of a person,” Bode replied. “I know she didn’t mean to push. I don’t think she really anticipated what my reaction was going to be and I think by the time she sort of realized it, I think it was too late and I don’t really, I don’t blame her at all. I feel terrible that she is taking the heat for that because it really is just a heat of the moment kind of circumstance, and I don’t think there was any harm intended. So, it was just a lot of emotion for me, it’s been a lot over the last year and that you sometimes don’t realize how much you contain that stuff until the dam breaks and then it’s just a real outpouring.”

Watch Bode break down as Cooper questions him about his dead brother:

  • AndyWarhorse

    It doesn't matter what the intent was, it was disgusting.

  • Stephen C

    If NBC felt showing the display Cooper engineered was necessary …. then I'm done with them and those who choose to sponsor their shows. I will record the rest of the games so I can fast-forward through the commercials and through the Bob Costas type junk.

    • Sferd

      Amen! The DVR and FF button are my friends during the Olympics.

      • Fla

        right on Sferd!…

  • Material girl

    Bode was being a class act and giving more respect than he received from Kristen Cooper. The bush league attempt to drive Bode to tears robbed him and the fans from what should have been elation and joy in the moment. I don't want to even see Kristen Cooper on my TV screen.

  • Courtney Winters

    SPIN it what way you like….THE “interview” was DIGUSTING to say the least. THAT STUPID UNCARING BIT ch….should be ASHAMED. That was beyond the pale of low life interviewing.

  • Thecolonelsanders

    Bode is a champ. That so called “reporter” can go die in a bin. Anyone who had anything to do with the production as well.

  • jrgeeman

    I saw it…..and the longer she went on, the angrier I got. It wasn't enough for her to bring up his dead brother….I guess she felt Bode didn't say enough about him to satisfy her, so she continue to press him. “Good race Bode; but enough about that…. let's talk about your dead brother! No tears yet….well let me try something else. Still no tears? Don't worry Bode, I'm not done yet……It looked like you were talking to him up there at the start…what were you trying to say to him……..YES! GOTCHA!” Then she had the nerve to pat his shoulder.
    Let me add, the cameramen were no better. When she did finally get some tears, the camera zoomed in to make sure we would not confuse tears with sweat. Plus, when he moved away from her to get some personal space, the camera was right there. Look at the still photos and you can see the cameraman kneeling to get a shot at the waterworks. It was terrible.

    • Dan Sublett

      I agree 100% on this. Well said.

    • shocked

      Yes, the closeup shot was a tell that they had this planned in advance.

    • moofer

      After my family began screaming at the TV, I had to change the channel. Advertisers: take note

  • lorri

    It still went too far….the guy was breaking down, anyone could see that.

  • scaryklown

    Cooper gets a pass the first time she asked about it and maybe for pushing a 2nd time. And that's it. I also noticed when Bode collapsed one of his friends came over to comfort him and a different woman (not Cooper) who looked like she might have been a producer moved forward and tried to shoo the friend away – because the friend was blocking NBC's shot of Miller sobbing? What a-holes.

  • OMGinSC

    This was just another example where the media feels they have the right to invade everyone's personal space. If Bode had stopped the interview or told the interviewer to bug off he would have been vilified by the media. Then to be chased around by the camera-person. Those two individuals and whom ever was running the show should be fired. Can you imagine if this took place in a school situation: Teacher, Johnny, come up on stage and let's talk about the medal you just one… now how does this make you feel since your mother was just killed in action, aw Johnny I see I brought you to tears, Sorry!… Johnny leaves stage to find some personal space, security cameras follows his travels and teacher has them broadcast for the entire student body to watch… Bullying – Fired – Sued!

  • Ruby

    Congratulations Kristen . . . took one of the higher moments of Bode Miller's life and brought it down, down, down. We couldn't believe how you pushed him to the limit. I would have pushed you right out of the picture. NBC should be embarrassed as it was rude, disgusting, disrespectful and totally out of line. Kristen did not deserve the kindness from Bode Miller. He was a true gentleman and obviously respectful.
    NBC doesn't deserve to have the Olympics and OMG – Bob Costa is coming back? PLEASE – it has been wonderful without him. Do yourself a favor and get rid of him and Kristen. Sorry Bode – had to get the anger out.

  • Marie

    Obviously Christin has never lost a loved one. She accomplished her goal, to show the emotion… Terrible! I lost a brother in law last year, and felt her continuing questions, were uncaring and rude. Hopefully she will learn from this and never press someone on a loss of a loved one again

  • poorrichardsheartache

    nbc sports reached a new low in coverage both immediately at the end of the skiing and in the late night interview. no class exploitation at its finest

  • Dan Sublett

    I was looking for her to grab Bode and start yelling “START CRYING”. Way to far just to get an interview. She just kept pushing it and pushing it. Hope the hell she's happy. BITCH.

  • adam

    the producers are as much to blame as this was recorded and shown later. They had plenty of time to think and edit. NBC as a whole has gone tabloid to get ratings. You have to put the Kardashians on? Really? Low class. I hope the IOC ends your the NBC contract so we don't have to watch ythe none sense anymore!!! You are disgusting NBC
    !

  • Brian Chaput

    Bode continues to show class. While this website is no better by posting the video.

  • has class

    I was so angry watching this. I hope that “wanna be” reporter can find another line of work because she is horrible. It was so disturbing to me how many emotionally raw interviews I saw by NBC, most them sticking a microphone in the face of some poor athlete that fell or lost their dream after years of training. I saw too many interviews with Teary eyed athletes that had not even had time to compose themselves. Have some class NBC, these dedicated Olympians deserve more compassion and a moment to compose themselves. I don't enjoy watching them breakdown on camera. If you need some tips on professional reporting ask Fox news for some tips.

  • Upset

    totally classless and you damned well know it.
    Convey the emotion of what? His performance or to get him to cry.. Again, you have no class. none.

  • bookgirl

    Spin, spin, spin!

  • Dee Bradford

    It is her job to know how things are going in an interview. Ms Cooper failed miserably. Miller handled this with class. Ms. Cooper is in hiding. She can't take back her horrible questions…but at the very least, she should make a complete apology. Not a word. And NBC is even defending it. When I watched it, I literally cringed during the “interrogation”…even before he broke down. Hell, NBC, he fell to his freakin knees, what do you want???????

  • Karen Gilley

    I think the viewing public knows how bad it is to lose a loved one. This was a train wreck of an interview, we don't need you to chase down someone and hound them with the camera still rolling just to bump up your ratings. We have enjoyed Bode for many years and would rather have had an upbeat end to his competitive career. The worst part is you could have edited this out. Wrong questions, wrong call all the way around.

  • DisappointedinMN

    Not only did Kristin Cooper cross the line but most sports reporters are just as guilty. We the public do not need to see what you seem to think we need to see and hear. Respect of the person goes a long way in being a good reporter.

  • GoodWitch

    There is nothing defensible about your intent! It is a poor excuse and completely unacceptable. Professional, responsible journalism can only exist where character does! You are neither responsible nor professional and NBC producers, along with reporters, who feel it necessary to elicit such reactions/emotions, regardless of consequences, completely lack any type of character. How pathetic!

  • phochief

    “Our intent was to convey emotion” is an excuse for FORCING the emotion from an Olympian who had just won a medal. Bode was all smiles and happy — until an NBC reporter badgered him to “convey emotion”. That's NOT journalism.

  • Shocked/Embarrassed

    Kristen Cooper was trying to make him break down. DISGUSTING!

  • Voyage Gal

    NBC defense of this interview shows how totally clueless they are. Their viewers don't want athletes to be asked insensitive questions. You don't re-open a broken wound to watch it bleed – you know it will bleed – you know the pain is there – you don't act like an insensitive clod and ask about it – are you still sad your brother died? “Such antics do not amount to a man.” Henry V (3.2.28)

  • moofer

    Well NBC, your “intent” pissed off your audience. We don't care what your intent was. Grow some humanity.

  • KathyA

    This was one of the most disturbing bits I've seen on the news for a very long time. How low will you stoop to get your story! Cristin Cooper pushed & egged dug until she caused a man to break down and sob, then the cameras followed him as he huddled in tears on the ground. In such poor taste.

  • Danny Knoll Jr

    it was badgering and bullshit, stop making excuses and fire her

  • ANNB

    U ARE NOT INTENDED TO MAKE NEWS. DISPICABLE.

  • Birddog

    Cooper's interview was like watching someone scratch the scabs off a burn victim. I think the results illustrated the “intent”. She needs to make a public apology for her insensitivity and stupidity. There's just no excuse.