Flanked by her mom, an emotional Janay Rice opened up to the Today show’s Matt Lauer in an interview that aired Monday about the aftermath of the assault in an Atlantic City elevator that brought her into the national spotlight.
Rice, whose husband Ray was reinstated Friday after a retired judge overturned the NFL’s indefinite suspension, told Lauer that she refused to watch the video published September 8 by TMZ showing Rice knock her unconscious.
She also elaborated on feelings she expressed in an Instagram post the day after the video was released in which she lashed out at the media.
Here’s how she explained it to Lauer, with tears in her eyes:
I was so angry. I was hurt. Seeing the man that I love have everything ripped up from under him made me angry. The support system that I thought we had in the Ravens, that made angry. The fact that I knew we wouldn’t be here anymore, that made me angry. The fact that we have to pick up and move our child from where she’s used to, it hurt. It hurt a lot. I just had to get it off my chest.
Asked by Lauer if lashing out on Instagram made her feel better, Rice responded: “It did.”
You can watch some highlights from the interview in the player at the top of this post. A second portion of the interview featuring both Janay and Ray is set to air on Tuesday.