Bode Miller Interview: Did NBC Push Olympian Too Far?

by at .  Updated at . Comments

Bode Miller won a bronze medal in the super-G skiing event at the Olympics in Sochi, Russia Sunday, but it was his post-race interview that's generated even more buzz.

The 36-year-old, whose brother died last year before he could make it to Sochi - Chelone Miller was a promising young snowboarder - was clearly emotional.

It wasn't unreasonable for NBC’s Christin Cooper to ask about his brother’s death in this context, and Miller brought it up in response to her first question.

He admitted he had “a lot of emotion riding” on the race, but then Cooper pushed too far, in the opinion of some viewers. Take a look and see what you think:

“I know you wanted to be here with Chelly experiencing these games; how much does it mean to come up with a great performance for him? Was it for him?” she said.

This was borderline intrusive, but she pushed Miller into a thoughtful answer, that he did not know if he had won a medal for his brother or to “make myself proud.”

Even then, Cooper pressed on.

She asked whom the skiing great seemed to be talking to when he looked up in the sky before he started his run. “What’s going on there?” she said.

Miller’s head was bowed. He was unable to answer.

Most awkwardly of all, NBC lingered over this scene for over a minute as Miller continued to weep, as he walked away, as he was comforted by his wife.

He might have cried on his own, for his brother, for joy, for the way his life had changed. Either way, Miller's emotion was raw and it was overwhelming.

It is a real, honest element of athletic triumph and defeat, especially in this case, and you can understand a journalist wanting to ask him real questions.

Still, if nothing else, it appeared that NBC and Cooper lacked the sensitivity to know when enough was enough, even if the topic itself wasn't out of bounds.

What do you think? Did NBC push him too far?

Tags: ,