Rick DiPietro, in an interview with the New York Post, clarified comments he had made in an earlier interview with News 12 Long Island in which DiPietro appeared to intimate he had contemplated suicide.
In speaking with the newspaper, DiPietro said he never has considered killing himself, saying he was "100 percent facetious" in the News 12 interview.
DiPietro told the Post the point he was trying to make in the TV interview was how important his wife has been to him through a difficult process that included several serious injuries as well as his demotion to Bridgeport of the American Hockey League earlier this week.
"I'm just trying to bring light to fact of how important my wife has been," DiPietro told the Post. "It's been a trying last couple years. There have been times that I've been depressed, and I don't know where I'd be without the support of my wife."
Injuries have limited DiPietro to 50 games in the past five seasons; he hasn't won a game since Dec. 3, 2011, and was 0-3-0 this season, allowing 12 goals on 83 shots. He was placed on waivers by the Islanders on Feb. 22, and after clearing waivers the next day, he was assigned to Bridgeport. DiPietro has yet to play a game for Bridgeport.
DiPietro is in the seventh year of a 15-year, $67.5 million contract. The deal, which pays DiPietro $4.5 million per season, runs through the 2020-21 season.
Kevin Maher, who conducted the DiPietro interview for News 12, posted on his Twitter feed: "DiPietro also admitted injuries, losing and fan hatred over the past 3 years made him think about killing himself at one point."
Maher also posted a quote from DiPietro on his reaction to being waived by the Islanders: "they ripped my heart out, stabbed it, set it on fire and flushed it down the toilet." And when asked if he felt he remained a part of the Islanders' future, he quoted DiPietro as responding, "I don't know."
In response to the News 12 interview, Islanders general manager Garth Snow released a statement:
"We are aware of Rick's comments today and the severity of them. We will handle them internally as we do with all player matters. This is an opportunity for Rick to play lots of games in Bridgeport."