BORN DECEMBER 17TH 1957 in Boston USA to Canadian parents Farrell and Pauline who had moved to Massachusetts for work. His father, a baseball fan, named him after the New York Yankee legend, Mickey Mantle. In 1961, the family moved to Mulgrave, Nova Scotia, opposite Port Hawkesbury on Cape Breton Island, a deep water port on the Strait of Canso. The family opened a meat and grocery market supplying ship chandlers and later the off-shore natural gas rigs. Three brothers followed, and like most boys of the area, all played ice hockey.
He attended the local community school and reported on local hockey which led to an interest in sports announcing. He later worked as a DJ in the small local radio station, then completed a Diploma of Radio Broadcasting at Lambton College in Sarnia, Ontario, where he was a reporter for the Lambton Leader College newspaper. He attended St Thomas University in New Brunswick where he played for the varsity team, between 1978 and 1980. The Port Hawkesbury Arena across the Strait required travel by car, but he became goalkeeper for the Strait Pirates of Port Hawkesbury in the Cape Breton Junior Hockey League (now Nova Scotia Junior Hockey League), the longest continuously running Junior B franchise in Canada. He was raised playing regional junior hockey against the likes of the New Glasgow Bombers, the Sydney Millionaires and the Antigonish Bulldogs, there in Atlantic Canada with its close connection to the Atlantic States of America.
He attended the Lyle Carter hockey school from where he got a tryout with the London Knights in the Ontario Hockey League in 1975. They were at their peak by 1976-7, led by future NHLers Rob Ramage, Brad Marsh and Dino Ciccarelli. Sutherland missed-out and played Junior B hockey instead. Then one night the TV program, Hockey Night in Canada, changed everything. He saw Sandi Logan, secretary of the Australian national ice hockey association, standing in the rink corridor in an Australian hockey bomber jacket. "There's a rep from Australian ice hockey come to watch the game," said the commentator as the camera zoomed in. It was soon after a write-up about playing in Australia appeared in his local paper.
At that time, Logan worked with Four Corners, the Australian investigative journalism television program, and he told him a new rink had opened in Adelaide and, although they were struggling with the cost of flying out a Canadian goalie, they needed help coaching local goalies. He set off from Halifax in January 1981, sponsored by the national association to play and coach in Australia. He joined the local Redwings and the Payneham Flyers for the 1981 NIHL season with Martin Francis and Gary Sohkanen, finishing on top of the standings. A coach and publicity officer for the rink and media manager for the Club, he organized local game coverage as a newspaper correspondent and made an important contribution to the promotion of the Australian game. "C'mon Australia, go for a good deal when you are offered one, I'll put my own reputation on the line, it's the fastest team sport there is and if you enjoy the excitement of swift contact action, then this is the game for you."
He married Joanna, had two children, and became an Australian national. He returned to North America several times and in the late-1980s remarried in Australia to Dien, a Vietnamese refugee. The couple have two children, a daughter, 18, and son, 13. He was also Media Director of the Adelaide Giants' Australian Baseball League team from 1993-96, and in 1995 he worked in a similar role for the Los Angeles Dodgers minor league team in Great Falls, Montana. He won national media awards from both the Australian Baseball League and National Basketball League for his radio and newspaper coverage of the Adelaide Giants and Adelaide 36ers basketball. In 2016, the year that marked his return to the sport after a long break, he was vice president and general manager of the Adelaide Adrenaline; tournament director of the 2016 Brown Trophy; and a regular writer on hockey, including theaihl.com.
Ross Carpenter, 'Sutherland, Mickey (1957- )', Legends of Australian Ice, Melbourne, Australia, http://icelegendsaustralia.com/legends-2/bio-sutherland.html, accessed online .