Sportsnet provided Don Cherry an opportunity to apologize for what they considered to be racism in context. Cherry maintained that his comment was not racist, but factual, refusing to offer either a public or private apology or attribute any negative connotation to his comment.
“Sports brings people together – it unites us, not divides us,” dictated in a statement from Sportsnet president Bart Yabsley. “Following further discussions with Don Cherry after Saturday Night’s broadcast, it has been decided it is the right time for him to immediately step down. During the broadcast, he made divisive remarks that do not represent our values or what we stand for.”
Cherry has ben co-hosting Hockey Night, and Coach’s Corner in Canada for 38 years, with his termination coming into full effect as of Monday. Yahoo Sports refers to Cherry as “loud-mouthed, brash” suggesting that there may have been a growing distain for his mannerism growing amount the Canadian Mainstream Media.
“Don is synonymous with hockey and has played an integral role in growing the game over the past 40 years. We would like to thank Don for his contributions to hockey and sports broadcasting in Canada.”
Cherry sticks to his statement, and will not attribute any racist intent to his use of, “you people.”
“I know what I said and I meant it,” Cherry said via the Toronto Sun’s Joe Warmington. “To keep my job, I cannot be turned into a tamed robot.”
Critics of Cherry have been complaining over the last few years that he has made a major shift from factual sports analysis to slapstick style humor that isn’t appreciated by a significant portion of modern-day consumers in Canada.
With his career beginning in 1980, and his show premiere Coach’s Corner only six years later, his career earned him a spot on Canada’s Walk of Fame in 2015.
Before his success in Canadian Sports analysis and commentary he was in minor league as a player, with one game logged with the Boston Bruins in 1955. Once he was threw playing, he had sever successful years as a coach of Rochester Americans, and back to the Boston Bruins.