A Toronto city councillor who denied causing a drunken ruckus during a Maple Leafs hockey game last month has apologized for the incident, saying he "made a major mistake."

Etobicoke Coun. Rob Ford says he is sorry about the incident and the fact he lied about it when confronted by a reporter from the National Post, three days after the incident.

He told the Post at the time he hadn't been to a hockey game since Christmas. He continued his denials this week when the Toronto Star picked up the story.

"This is unbelievable," he told the Star. "I wasn't even at the game, so someone's trying to do a real hatchet job on me, let me tell you."

But Tuesday, Ford made a 180-degree turn, admitting he had lied about the incident and apologizing for his behaviour at the hockey game.

"I reflected on it last night, and talked to my family. I came forward and admitted it. That's all I can do. I mean, I'm not perfect," said Ford.

"Being in politics, you're in the spotlight all the time. I made a mistake. I made a major mistake. I really regret it."

Ford, a right-leaning, law-and-order councillor, says he had too much to drink before going to a Maple Leafs game at the Air Canada Centre on April 15.

According to a couple sitting nearby, Ford was boisterous and insulting, shouting obscenities before he and a companion were escorted out of the arena by security guards.

The offended couple has written a two-page complaint to the city. Dan and Rebecca Hope of Enniskillen, Ont., say they didn't know Ford was a city councillor and have no political axe to grind.

The city's integrity commissioner is deciding whether to launch an investigation.