New York Islanders goaltender Rick DiPietro says comments he made about considering suicide in a recent interview were used for effect and were not meant to be taken literally.
The comments came to light Thursday when New York-based sports anchor Kevin Maher tweeted excerpts from an interview with DiPietro about being waived by the Islanders and sent down to Bridgeport of the American Hockey League.
According to Maher’s Twitter feed, DiPietro said the Islanders waiving him felt like “they ripped my heart out, stabbed it, set it on fire and flushed it down the toilet.” Maher followed with a tweet saying DiPietro considered suicide as injuries, ineffective play and fan animosity took its toll.
After the comments predictably caught fire on Twitter, DiPietro later clarified to ESPN and the New York Post that he wasn’t serious about the suicide comment and was attempting to show how his wife has helped him through “a trying last couple of years.”
The Islanders said in a statement that DiPietro’s comments will be dealt with internally.
DiPietro is in the seventh year of a 15-year, US$67.5 million deal, but has only played in 175 games over that period due to numerous injuries.
He was drafted by the Islanders first overall in the 2000 NHL draft.
DiPietro has a record of 130-136-8-28 in 318 career games to go along with a 2.87 goals-against average and a .902 save percentage.