Unlike many television viewers, Bode Miller says he doesn't think NBC's Christin Cooper went over the line in her post-race interview after the American skier won a bronze medal in the super-G at the Olympics in Sochi.
"I appreciate everyone sticking up for me," Miller wrote on Twitter. "Please be gentle [with] Christin Cooper, it was crazy emotional and not all her fault."
"My emotions were very raw," he continued. "She asked the questions that every interviewer would have, pushing is part of it, she [wasn't] trying to cause pain."
During the interview, Miller broke down when Cooper asked him about his younger brother Chelone, who died of an apparent seizure last year.
"I know you wanted to be here with Chilly experiencing these games," Cooper said. "How much does it mean to you to come up with a great performance for him? And was it for him?"
"I mean, I don’t know it’s really for him," Miller responded, fighting back tears. "But I wanted to come here and, I don’t know, I guess make my self proud."
The 36-year-old had just become the oldest Alpine skier to ever win an Olympic medal. Cooper, though, pushed further.
"When you’re looking up in the sky at the start, we see you there and it just looks like you’re talking to somebody," she said. "What’s going on there?"
[Related: Why Miller was so emotional]
Miller, overcome with emotion, then dropped to his knees. His wife, Morgan, eventually came over and comforted him.
Cooper patted Miller on the shoulder, too, but the interview did not sit well with some viewers.
In a statement, NBC defended the interview and Cooper's line of questioning:
Our intent was to convey the emotion that Bode Miller was feeling after winning his bronze medal. We understand how some viewers thought the line of questioning went too far, but it was our judgment that his answers were a necessary part of the story. We’re gratified that Bode has been publicly supportive of Christin Cooper and the overall interview.
On Monday, Miller continued his defense of Cooper on NBC's "Today" show.
“I’ve known Christin a long time, and she is a sweetheart of a person,” Miller said. “I know she didn’t mean to push. I don’t think she really anticipated what my reaction was going to be, and I think by the time she sort of realized it, I think it was too late and I don’t really, I don’t blame her at all.”
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- Bode Miller
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