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Flames' Peters admits to using racial slur 10 years ago

Len Redkoles / National Hockey League / Getty

Warning: Story contains offensive language

Calgary Flames head coach Bill Peters apologized in a letter to general manager Brad Treliving for using a racial slur a decade ago, according to Sportsnet's Eric Francis.

Former NHL defenseman Akim Aliu tweeted Monday night that Peters directed the N-word toward him several times 10 years ago over Aliu's choice of music while with the Chicago Blackhawks' AHL affiliate.

"He walked in before a morning pregame skate and said, 'Hey Akim, I'm sick of you playing that n----- shit,'" said Aliu, who was born in Nigeria. "He said, 'I'm sick of hearing this n-----s f------ other n-----s in the ass stuff."

Aliu added: "He then walked out like nothing ever happened. You could hear a pin drop in the room. Everything went dead silent. I just sat down in my stall, didn't say a word."

In his letter, Peters wrote, "After the incident, I was rightfully challenged about my use of language, and I immediately returned to the dressing room to apologize to the team."

Aliu said then-Rockford captain Jake Dowell confronted Peters about the event. But instead of apologizing, as Peters claims, Aliu said Peters brought him into his office privately, where he did not issue an apology.

"You know, I'm just sick of this n----- shit," Peters said during that meeting, according to Aliu. "It's every day. From now on, we need to play different music."

Peters wrote in his letter that he "meant no disrespect" for his "offensive language."

Asked if he wanted to respond to Peters' letter, Aliu declined, according to Francis.

On Tuesday, Peters was accused of physical abuse during his time as the head coach of the Carolina Hurricanes by former NHLer Michal Jordan. Rod Brind'Amour, Carolina's current head coach and former assistant under Peters, says the abuse "for sure happened."

Peters' letter makes no mention of the allegations of physical abuse.

Peters was not behind the bench for Calgary's game Wednesday as the club continues its investigation of the head coach.

Sports Illustrated legal analyst Michael McCann suggested the Flames could be prolonging their investigation in order to build a sufficient case to fire Peters without having to pay the remainder of his contract.

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