A day after an incident where Florida Panthers forward Krys Barch allegedly made a racial comment directed at Montreal Canadiens defenseman P.K. Subban, his agent stepped to his defense.
The details of the incident are sketchy (you can read more on the game and the incident here) and many details have yet to, and may never be released.
Late Sunday evening, TSN Darren Dreger reported, via Twitter, that the NHL is planning a conference call hearing for Barch, with Colin Campbell handling the incident. According to league rules, Campbell handles all incidents not related to player safety. The league considers racial comments inappropriate and a serious issue.
Sunday Afternoon, Inside Hockey received a statement from Barch’s agent, Scott Norton.
“I have been dealing with Krys and the NHLPA all day today on this and we just hope that it will be proven that my client said nothing with any racial prejudice whatsoever.
I have known Krys since he was 15 years old, and stand behind him 100% in this situation. Krys is a tough, rugged player whose game plays on the edge, but he has never, nor would he ever degrade a competitor based on his race, religion or ethnicity.
We are looking at the possibility of Krys releasing a statement in the near future, and hope that everyone will keep an open mind until all the facts are known.”
Earlier, Norton admitted Barch did chirp at someone on the Canadiens, but again denied any racial comments when he spoke to the Miami Herald.
“Krys’ commentary to me is that he did say something,’’ Norton said. “At the end of the day, we’re confident there will be no further punishment and he will be cleared of wrongdoing and his name will be cleared. Krys is a family man with kids, his whole family is in Canada and are hearing this everywhere. It’s tough on all of them. He hopes there is an understanding that there was no ill intent on his part. It was a misunderstanding. He wants his record to be clean when all this is over.’’
Inside Hockey will continue to follow the story, and will post any information as it is released.