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.”
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.
“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: