The Boston Bruins retained former US Attorney General Loretta Lynch to conduct an independent review of the player screening process after they signed prospect Mitchell Miller and then parted ways with him two days later amid backlash.
The Bruins announced Tuesday that Lynch, of the law firm Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, will “conduct an independent review of our player screening process” and ensure that “our process moving forward reflects our core values.”
Boston said it will cooperate fully with the review and make the findings public.
“The Boston Bruins strive every day to live our values and meet the high standards that our partners, fans, and community have come to expect,” the Bruins said in a statement released Tuesday. “This includes treating everyone inside and outside our organization with dignity and respect. Recently we have failed to live up to high standards and disappointed ourselves and many in our community.”
The Bruins signed Miller, a 20-year-old defenseman, to an entry-level contract on November 4 with the intention of sending him to AHL Providence. However, the team announced on November 6 that it was parting ways with Miller after a backlash from fans, team players, and NHL commissioner Gary Pittman.
Miller is still contracted to the team and technically still a member of Providence. Among the Bruins’ options: pay Miller to stay at home for the season and then buy him out at the end of the year for a third of his NHL salary; Or working with Miller and the NHLPA on a settlement that would allow him to become a free agent.
He was a fourth-round pick by the Arizona Coyotes in 2020, but his draft rights were vacated when a story was published about how he and another middle school classmate were convicted in juvenile court in 2016 of assault, Isaiah Meyer-Crothers, and bullying. A black fellow with developmental disabilities.
In the report, Meyer-Cruthers’ mother alleged that Miller began abusing her son in the second grade and used racial slurs frequently. Miller admitted in Ohio juvenile court that he used racial epithets against the Meyer-Cruthers, physically assaulted him, and on one occasion tricked him into “licking a candy bar that Miller and another boy had wiped in the bathroom urinal,” according to police. Report.
Fans were outraged by Miller’s signing, and veterans like the Bruins Nick Foligno And the Patrice Bergeron He expressed his disappointment. Bettman reiterated that Miller had not been allowed by his office to play for the Bruins and “I can’t tell you he will be eligible to enter the NHL.”
On November 7, Boston president Cam Neely expressed concern about failures in the team’s vetting process in signing Miller. He cited “new information” when the team parted ways with Miller on November 6. Neely said the fact that the brothers had not come into contact with the Meyer-Cruthers family was “concerning” and that it was an “absolute” problem with the team’s vetting process.
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