In case you missed it, earlier this week former NHL enforcer Georges Laraque was on Quebec’s CHOI Radio X 98.1 and he claimed on the air that former Edmonton Oilers and current New Jersey Devils forward Taylor Hall had substance abuse issues that triggered his blockbuster trade in the summer of 2016. According to Laraque, "Hall had problems off the ice, and went to rehab during the summer of his trade.”
"When he got to rehab, word got out across the NHL that the Oilers were looking to move him because of it. It reminds us of the Zack Kassian case. When everyone in the league knows the player's dirt, it's normal that the player's value is going to drop."
Unsurprisingly this set off a firestorm of controversy once it hit the airwaves with fans and analysts calling out Laraque for airing Hall’s private information or, even worse, reporting false information. And without any surprise, on Monday, just days later, Laraque took back all the information he shared on air.
In a statement prepared for social media, Laraque said:
"In a french radio interview, I mentioned that years ago Taylor Hall had to go through rehab, info I got from an NHL hockey agent. After further verifications I can say that this information was 100% wrong, I was wrong and apologize to Taylor for the mistake."
While we don't have any more details on what triggered Laraque to share this false information to the public, or how he was pushed to make the previous statement, we know that fans are still very angry at the radio host for his actions. Fans have been ruthless of social medial, criticizing Laraque's professionalism, and even demanding that he be laid off and that he himself quit the radio station. Here is a look at a few rough comments from the fanbase who still cannot comprehend how the former enforcer let this happen:
Now, we of course have to appreciate the fact that Laraque reportedly reached out to Hall to offer his sincere apologies, but do you believe it is enough? Some fans had fun creating their own news about Laraque, with his approach, stating something ridiculous or offensive about the former NHLer and then adding that they do not have any proof to show for it:
The worst for Laraque is that he keeps adding fuel to the fire by responding to fans who have been criticizing his work, and recently told a woman who called him out not to assume anything...
Pretty ironic, Georges!