WITH HIS voice cracking and hands shaking, former NHL player Matthew Barnaby apologized for his "bad decisions" after pleading guilty to four violations connected to a drunken driving arrest that got him fired from ESPN.
"I'm going to do my best, take the proper measures to make sure this does not happen again," Barnaby said last night, following an hour-long appearance in the town court in Clarence in suburban Buffalo. "I take full responsibility for everything that I've done.
"I promise - my kids, my family, my friends. I promise I'll make them proud, this community proud," he said, as his eyes welled with tears.
The former hockey analyst pleaded guilty to driving while intoxicated, refusing a breath test, driving with unsafe tires and failing to notify the Department of Motor Vehicles of his address change.
Judge Michael Powers sentenced Barnaby to 100 hours of community service speaking to local school children, alcohol abuse counseling and $1,950 in fines.
Barnaby was arrested not far from his Clarence home in the early morning of Dec. 5. That's when Erie County sheriffs found him behind the wheel of a Porsche Cayenne that had damage to its front end and was causing sparks because it was missing its front tire.
Barnaby had his license revoked after failing field sobriety tests and refusing a breath test.
Erie County assistant district attorney Kelley Omel said sheriffs have since found what they believe to be the missing front tire. It was discovered near an exit ramp approximately 9 miles from where the 38-year-old Barnaby was arrested.
The veteran of 13 NHL seasons was fired by ESPN less than a day after he was arrested.
At New York, Trevor Daley broke up a scoreless game with 4:59 left, Richard Bachman made 34 saves to win his second straight start, and the Dallas Stars beat the Rangers, 1-0.
* At Sunrise, Fla., Ilya Kovalchuk and Patrik Elias scored in the shootout and Martin Brodeur stopped both Florida attempts to lift the New Jersey Devils to a 3-2 victory over the Panthers.
* At Montreal, Petteri Nokelainen scored with 6:15 remaining as the Canadiens recovered after giving up a two-goal lead in the third period, beating the New York Islanders, 5-3.
* At Buffalo, Jared Cowen scored 45 seconds into overtime, giving the Ottawa Senators a 3-2 victory over the Sabres.
* At Toronto, Tim Connolly scored his second goal of the game at 44 seconds of overtime to lift the Maple Leafs to a 2-1 win over the Carolina Hurricanes.
* At Boston, Brad Marchand scored twice and Tuukka Rask earned his first shutout of the season, leading the Boston to a 3-0 victory over Los Angeles in the Kings' first game under interim coach John Stevens.
* At Columbus, Ohio, James Wisniewski had the last of Columbus' three shootout goals and Steve Mason made several big stops in his first game after a 27-day benching to lead the Blue Jackets over the Vancouver Canucks, 2-1.
* At Pittsburgh, Pavel Datsyuk had a goal and an assist and Jimmy Howard stopped 25 shots to lead the Detroit Red Wings to a 4-1 victory over the Penguins.
* At Nashville, Tenn., Colin Wilson scored a power-play goal in the third period to give the Predators a 2-1 win over the Calgary Flames.
* At Winnipeg, Bryan Little's third-period, power-play goal led the Jets to a 2-1 win over the Minnesota Wild.