News

Dolphins owner to meet Martin on bullying complaint

Dolphins owner to meet Martin on bullying complaint

BULLY ALLEGATIONS: Miami Dolphins guard Richie Incognito (68) and tackle Jonathan Martin (71) looks over plays during the second half of an NFL preseason football game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Saturday, Aug. 24, in Miami Gardens, Fla. Photo: Associated Press

(Reuters) – Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross said on Monday he had arranged a meeting for Wednesday with Jonathan Martin, the player who left the team saying he was emotionally distraught over being bullied by team mates.

Ross said he was “appalled” by some of the revelations in the case that has captured widespread public attention over the so-called clubhouse culture on the Dolphins and other National Football League teams.

Fellow lineman Richie Incognito, who was singled out by Martin, has already been suspended indefinitely by the National Football League team, and the NFL has announced an independent investigation into the matter.

“I’d like to hear from him (Martin) about what happened and what made him feel that way,” Ross told a news conference in Tampa before Monday night’s game between the Dolphins and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in his first public comments on the case.

“And what we could have done to prevent this from happening.”

Ross said he had utmost confidence in his staff including coach Joe Philbin, but said that if the independent probe found there needed to be changes, “then there will be changes.”

Martin, a second-round draft pick in 2012 who started all 16 games last year and the first seven games this season, left the team at the end of October suffering from emotional distress and representatives of his later informed the club of the alleged bullying and abuse by team mates.

Thousands of dollars were demanded to pay for dinners and a Las Vegas outing organized by veteran players, according to claims made by Martin’s representatives that also included other forms of verbal abuse.

A text message sent from Incognito to Martin, laced with racial epithets and violent threats, that was published particularly disgusted the team owner.

“I was appalled, I think anybody would be appalled, when you first read that text that was reported,” Ross said. “I didn’t realize people speak that way to people.

“We have to hear all the facts in this story,” added Ross. “There’s so many different things that are being said. I’m going to meet with Jonathan Martin face to face and hear what he has to say.”

Ross said he also planned to meet with Incognito. “He deserves to be heard,” the owner said.

Incognito has apologized for his insensitive remarks but added he was shocked at Martin’s reaction.

“People don’t know how Jon and I communicate with each other,” Incognito told Fox Sports on Sunday. “I’ve taken stuff too far. I did not intend to hurt him.”

Ross said he had established a committee to advise him on proper clubhouse conduct comprised of former NFL coaches Tony Dungy and Don Shula, and former players Dan Marino, Jason Taylor and Curtis Martin.

“These are people that have as much respect as anybody to play or coach the game,” said Ross. “They can give me advice on a personal code of conduct for the locker room.

“I think in any locker room, any workplace, every voice needs to be heard. Obviously, there was a voice that we were not hearing.”

Recent Headlines

in Music

Glen Matlock denies new Sex Pistols reunion

John Lydon, right, and Glen Matlock of The Sex Pistols perform at the Roxy in West Hollywood, Calif., on Thursday, Oct. 25, 2007.

Sex Pistols star Glen Matlock dashes fans' hopes of another reunion by insisting he hasn't had any contact with John Lydon in five years.

in Music

Aretha Franklin storms out of fast food joint

FILE - In this May 11, 2013 file photo, Aretha Franklin performs during McDonald's Gospelfest 2013 at the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J.Franklin won’t say what has caused her latest health problems, but says she’s had a “miraculous” recovery and is looking forward to performing soon.In a phone interview on Tuesday, Aug. 20, Franklin said that she recently had a cat scan and that it showed she was 85 percent improved. The 71-year-old has canceled several concerts and public appearances and blamed it on unspecified treatment.

Aretha Franklin stormed out a Johnny Rockets in Ontario, Canada last week after a nasty encounter with a rude employee.

in Music

The Beatles wanted to film ‘Lord of the Rings’

FILE- This is a 1967 handout image from Parlophone of The British group, The Beatles,. From left, are: Ringo Starr, John Lennon, Paul McCartney; and George Harrison. The woman who as a child was the basis for the Beatles song "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds" is gravely ill. It was thought by many at the time that the psychedelic song from Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Heart Club Band was a paean to LSD because of the initials in the title, but it was actually based on a drawing that John Lennon's young son Julian brought home from school. He told his father the drawing was of Lucy in the sky with diamonds. Lucy Vodden, now living in Surrey just outside of London _ drifted apart after schoolyard days, but they have gotten back in touch as Lennon has tried to help Vodden cope with Lupus, a life-threatening disease.

Peter Jackson reveals John Lennon could have played Gollum in a Stanley Kubrick directed LOTR adaptation.

in Entertainment

Fans support campaign to keep Sean Bean alive in new show

British actor Sean Bean arrives for a special UK screening of Cleanskin, at the Mayfair Hotel in central London, Monday, March 5, 2012.

The "Game of Thrones" actor has died more than 20 times in his career, and fans want it to stop.

in Entertainment

‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ sequel set for 2017

Guardians Of The Galaxy

Marvel unveils plans to press ahead with a sequel to "Guardians of the Galaxy," days before the superhero movie even hits theaters.