McGuire blames racial slur on drugs; denies 'boned' comment
EDDIE McGuire appears to be in reputation saving mode, telling a popular men's magazine he was out of his mind on painkillers when he made a racial slur against former footballer Adam Goodes and that he said Jessica Rowe should be "burned" not "boned".
The Nine Network star and Collingwood president's interview comes hot on the heels of his controversial joke implying sports journalist Caroline Wilson should be drowned.
That joke, made on-air and with colleagues during a Triple M-sponsored fund-raiser earlier this year, caused widespread condemnation because it condoned violence against women.
GQ magazine has released selected excerpts of its interview with McGuire.
In the article, the Who Wants to be a Millionaire host said he was exhausted and out of his head on "heavy-duty painkillers, antibiotics and steroids" for a knee infection when, in 2013, he said decorated Sydney Swans footballer could have starred in King Kong the musical.
"I mean, the night before, I'd been hosting a function raising $300,000 for indigenous scholarships," McGuire told GQ.
"So I was doing all that and I should have stayed in bed that day.
"I haven't really said this before, but I was on massive painkillers and crutches."
"Look, I'm pure of heart on this issue and I stand firmly for equality and against bigotry of any form - that's why I believe in equality of marriage, because to not do so is to believe in discrimination.
"I went home that night and I grabbed my two boys and we were all in tears and I said, 'Guys, this
is what's happened, this is what's going to happen and this is what we believe in, and this is what I believe in'."
McGuire also addressed claims that he called for Jessica Rowe to be "boned" from her role as Today show host in 2006.
McGuire was CEO of the Nine Network at the time and he apparently made the comment in front of fellow executives Jeffrey Browne and Mark Llewellyn.
Mr Llewellyn later said in a sworn affidavit that McGuire used the term because he wanted to sack Rowe, who is now part of the Ten Network.
However, McGuire disputed the claim in the GQ interview.
"It was a rhetorical question put to the director of news as to what he was going to do to save Jessica Rowe as she was getting pounded (by the media)," he said.
"And I refute that I said 'boned' - I may have said 'burned'. " - ARM NEWSDESK