Brock Boeser’s agent, Ben Hankinson, appeared on Monday’s edition of Donnie & Dhali – The Team on CHEK TV to discuss his client with hosts Don Taylor and Rick Dhaliwal.
Hankinson addressed the question asked by Postmedia’s Ben Kuzma at Sunday’s year-end press conference concerning the health of Boeser’s father, Duke, who is currently battling dementia.
Boeser appeared visibly upset after Kuzma asked the question and needed a long moment to compose himself before answering.
“He’s not doing well,” Boeser said through tears. “He has pretty bad dementia right now. It’s onset, and he’s had it pretty bad this year. It’s really hit me hard.”
While Boeser received widespread sympathy on social media after clips of his response were posted online, Kuzma was criticized by some onlookers for choosing to ask Boeser about his father’s health at the year-end press conference.
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More than 3,000 people have responded to a poll on the official Donnie & Dhali Twitter account asking whether Kuzma’s question crossed a line. As of 1:30 p.m. PT on Monday, 43.3 percent of respondents answered “Yes” while the rest said “No.”
Taylor asked Hankinson on Monday for his reaction to the emotion Boeser showed at the press conference. The full clip of Hankinson’s interview is below.
“I think it was probably a good thing, believe it or not, for Brock to go through that and just let it out, because he doesn’t say anything to me, his mom, his brother, his sister, his dad,” Hankinson said. “I think Brock was a little rattled, even after, thinking he screwed up and was embarrassed, but in today’s day and age, with everything out there, it’s just good for him to emotionally go through that and let people see what the average person deals with. Just because he’s a great hockey player doesn’t make it any different.”
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Taylor proceeded to ask Hankinson whether Boeser took any issue with Kuzma’s line of questioning.
“I don’t mean to speak on his behalf, but I know Brock was okay with it,” Hankinson said. “I don’t think it was out of line. You could debate it all you want, maybe it was, maybe it wasn’t, but I didn’t have a problem with it because Brock didn’t have a problem with it. I think, overall, it was good that, like I said, it got out.
“Maybe it wasn’t the perfect forum,” Hankinson continued. “He was kind of caught off-guard but he wasn’t, in any way, I don’t think, upset with Ben and the question.”