At 36, Bode Miller became the oldest athlete to win an alpine medal and the most medaled skier ever when he tied for bronze in the Super-G competition on Sunday. It was a special win for Bode, who became emotional during a postrace interview with NBC's Christin Cooper, which you can watch above. Bode broke down in tears while talking about his brother, Chelone "Chelly" Miller, who died from a seizure less than a year ago. The interviewer continued questioning Bode until the skier bent over crying and walked away from the camera. NBC's coverage continued as the camera followed Bode kneeling in the snow and later hugging his wife, Morgan.
After Christin came under fire for pushing Bode too far, NBC released the following statement:
"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."
Bode also showed his support for Christin by tweeting, "I appreciate everyone sticking up for me. Please be gentle with Christin Cooper, it was crazy emotional and not all her fault. #heatofthemoment," and adding, "My emotions were very raw, she asked the questions that every interviewer would have, pushing is part of it, she wasn't trying to cause pain." Bode even chatted with Matt Lauer on Monday morning's Today show to discuss the issue and again backed Christin:
"I've known Christin a long time, and she is a sweetheart of a person. 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. I feel terrible that she is taking the heat for that, because it really is just a heat-of-the-moment kind of circumstance, and I don't think there was any harm intended. So, it was just a lot of emotion for me; it's been a lot over the last year and that you sometimes don't realize how much you contain that stuff until the dam breaks, and then it's just a real outpouring."
Bode's time in Sochi isn't over yet, since he will compete in both men's slalom and giant slalom before the closing ceremony on Sunday.