TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Tampa Bay Lightning forward Pat Maroon encouraged fans to donate to a Tampa-based mental health charity in the name of a Boston Bruins broadcaster who insulted his appearance during Tuesday’s game.
Play-by-play announcer Jack Edwards made the comments in the first period of the game, which the Bruins would go on to win 3-1. He began by noting that Maroon was billed at 238 pounds.
“That was day one of training camp,” Edwards said on air. “I’ve got a feeling he’s had a few more pizzas between then and now.”
Edwards went on to say, “(Intermittent) fasting for Pat Maroon is like four hours without a meal.”
The broadcaster did acknowledge Maroon’s abilities on the ice, noting he won three Stanley Cups in a row with two different teams – the St. Louis Blues in 2019 and the Lightning in 2020 and 2021.
“Hey, three cups in a row, who can argue with his formula?” Edwards said.
Fans and hockey insiders slammed Edwards and spoke out in Maroon’s defense as the comments began making the rounds online.
“…broadcaster fat-shaming a professional athlete and three-time Stanley Cup champion,” Frank Seravalli with the Daily Faceoff wrote on Twitter. “@patmaroon doesn’t deserve that. No one does.”
“He’s just a jerk with a microphone,” Scott Wheeler, who covers the NHL for the Athletic, wrote on Twitter. “Good for Pat Maroon.”
Maroon responded to the comments by announcing he was making a $2,000 donation in Edwards’ name to Tampa Bay Thrives, a nonprofit that helps Tampa Bay residents struggling with mental health and substance abuse.
“In support of those struggling with mental health, bullying and body image I am making a 2,000 donation in the name of @realjackedwards to @TampaBayThrives and I encourage @TBLightning and @NHL fans to join me,” Maroon wrote on Twitter, along with a link to donate to the organization.
Lightning Captain Steven Stamkos showed support for his teammate in a retweet.
“Well done Patty…. Donating now!” Stamkos wrote.
Edwards did not publicly respond to Maroon’s Tweet or any criticism of his comments.