Leafs tough guy Domi denies McCarthy's racial-slur charge

NHL finds no evidence to support Flyer's claim


PHILADELPHIA -- Tie Domi used the word repeatedly as he stood in the visitors' dressing room at the First Union Center yesterday, patiently answering difficult questions from wave after wave of reporters.


Domi, 29, a Maple Leafs right wing with a reputation as one of the NHL's top fighters, was accused by the Philadelphia Flyers' Sandy McCarthy of using a racial slur during a heated exchange between the two during Toronto's 2-1 victory in Game 3 of the first-round playoff series Monday night.

Domi denied the accusation, saying he did not even know McCarthy's racial background. McCarthy's father is black, and his mother, who is from the Canadian province of New Brunswick, is part Caucasian, part Native American.

"I never even knew he was black," Domi said. "I thought he was a white guy. I've fought black guys in this league and nothing was ever said."

The NHL has investigated the matter and been unable to find corroborating evidence from anyone within earshot of the two players while they shouted at one another.

Domi accused McCarthy of spitting in his face and trying to justify the action by saying Domi had used a racial insult. He questioned why it was that no one heard the insult if so many players and officials were close to the encounter.

"He spit in my face and tried to turn the tables on me, and it's quite disturbing," Domi said.

Pub Date: 4/28/99

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