Oakland A’s catcher Bruce Maxwell, the only Major League Baseball player to kneel during the national anthem, made headlines this week claiming he was denied service at a restaurant in his hometown because of his protests.
Now, the waiter from this alleged incident has told Fox News that Maxwell’s story is a complete lie.
The waiter’s story
Matt Henry is a 42-year-old waiter at Keegan’s Public House in Alabama. He said he works too much to have time to attend Donald Trump rallies, as Maxwell claims the waiter told him, and had no idea who Maxwell was.
Here’s what Henry said actually happened that day:
“He is outright lying, Henry said. This is really upsetting as he was given full service, I didn’t even know who Bruce Maxwell was. This all started because I carded his friend who wanted to order a beer.
“[The friend] asked me, ‘Don’t you know who Bruce Maxwell is?’, and told me I was making everyone feel uncomfortable. Nobody was even paying attention to them.
“I didn’t know anything about him or the kneeling. All I know is a friend of mine 15 years ago lost his job for serving someone a drink who happened to be underage, so if anyone looks under 30, I’m going to card them.
“We didn’t even discuss Trump. I was working two jobs, I don’t have time for rallies. If this all happened a month ago, why suddenly now is he claiming all this now?"
Henry said Maxwell, the city councilman, and the friend who joined them were polite and paid their bill without objection.
A manager corroborates the story
Anne Whalen was the manager on duty the day of the alleged encounter, and she also said the issue was about ID’ing someone for a beer, not the national anthem or Trump.
“Matt came to me and told me that a guy wanted a beer but his ID was not valid and I told him he absolutely could not give it to him, we can go to jail for that in the state of Alabama,” Whalen said. "It was his friend causing all the fuss, none of us even knew who this baseball player was. I told him I had no idea who he was going on about. Eventually Matt just asked if we could put another server on the table so I did. I can’t believe the story.”
Recapping Maxwell’s claims
Maxwell told TMZ Sports earlier this week that a waiter confronted him as “the guy who took the knee” and refused to serve him on the basis that “I voted for Trump, and I stand for everything he stands for.”
Maxwell also accused the waiter of racially profiling him, and said incidents like that are “the reason I kneel.”
An Oakland A's spokesperson told Fox News that Maxwell stands by his story, and that the club has no further comment.