Aker talks himself out of the Mix
AUSSIE Rules motormouth Jason Akermanis has been dropped by Sunshine Coast radio station Mix 92.7FM after he used his debut segment yesterday to criticise the deceased AFL legend Jim Stynes.
Earlier in the week former Brownlow medallist Stynes lost his three-year battle with cancer, prompting an outpouring of grief from the footballing community.
However former Brisbane Lion Akermanis yesterday told the Mix FM presenters Caroline Hutchinson and Mark Darin that Stynes was "no saint" and the reaction to his death was over the top.
During the AFL season Akermanis was to have a weekly segment in which he would give Mix listeners his tips, but the station yesterday terminated the agreement.
Akermanis described Stynes as a great of a game and applauded him for his charity work, but sandwiched those comments in between a scathing attack on the Demons great.
The outspoken Akermanis yesterday issued a statement calling his comments stupid and insensitive.
However he had already stirred up a hornet's nest by describing Stynes as a "nasty man".
"It was like he was some kind of demigod or something," Akermanis told Mix FM.
"Jim was no saint. Way too much overkill. Jim was a nice guy. The truth is I knew Jim when we were playing against Ireland, his home country.
"He lived in Australia for 20-plus years and he was a nasty man in his day. He had a nice turn of phrase and he made sure you knew what he felt.
"He was a legend of the game, he did a great job, he did wonderful things with kids, but there are a bunch of other people who have done just as much and they don't get any recognition.
"I just think it's a bit out of kilter. But that being said he got a state funeral. Do all footballers get state funerals? There's something about it that just made me feel uncomfortable. I thought 'Jim's good but is he that good?'"
Irish-born Stynes played an AFL record 244 consecutive games, was a Brownlow Medal winner and president of the Melbourne club.
When he retired he devoted himself to working with disenfranchised youth through his charity the Reach Foundation.
Mix 92.7 FM's parent company Southern Cross Austereo yesterday severed ties with Akermanis as a result of his comments.
"Mix 92.7 believes the comments were in poor taste and a disservice to the incredible legacy of Jim Stynes and the outpouring of grief Australia wide," Southern Cross Austereo general manager John Williams said.