Young Hockey Player's Past Bullying Costs Him Again

Boston Bruins rescind contract with Mitchell Miller
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 7, 2022 11:05 AM CST
NHL Prospect's Past Bullying Costs Him Again
Stock photo.   (Getty/Volkovalrina)

For the second time, a young NHL prospect's history of bullying has cost him a shot at the big leagues. And it's not clear if 20-year-old Mitchell Miller will ever be allowed to play hockey in the NHL. The latest developments unfolded over the weekend, when the Boston Bruins rescinded a contract Miller signed only Friday, reports CNN. The background: When Miller was a 14-year-old eighth-grader in Ohio, he and a friend were convicted of tricking a Black classmate with disabilities into eating candy they wiped in a urinal. The victim had to be tested for various diseases, and he came out clean. However, as the Arizona Republic reported in a previous expose, the victim says the bullying and taunting by Miller, often with racial overtones, was something that had gone on for years.

All of this came to light in 2020, when the NHL's Arizona Coyotes signed Miller to a contract, only to rescind it when the history of bullying emerged. In signing Miller last week, the Bruins said Miller had atoned for a mistake he made as a young teenager. Upon rescinding the contract after a flurry of criticism, the team said it thought the urinal incident was an "isolated" one, but it had since learned "new information" to suggest otherwise. At the Athletic, Fluto Shinzawa writes that no "new information" emerged. The Bruins, he writes, simply failed to reach out to the victim's family or otherwise look into information that has been known for years. The team has since apologized to the family.

"He's not coming into the NHL," league commissioner Gary Bettman said over the weekend when all this was unfolding, per CNN. "He's not eligible at this point to come into the NHL. I can't tell you that he'll ever be eligible to come into the NHL." Miller has been playing in the junior leagues—he was defenseman of the year for Tri-City in the United States Hockey League last season, per He has apologized for the bullying, but the victim's family say he hasn't been sincere. "Dead and shallow" is how his father describes the apology to the Athletic. (More NHL stories.)

Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.