Vegas Golden Knights goaltender Robin Lehner has risen up as a voice for players across the NHL, often advocating for the safety and fair treatment of his peers to ensure their health both physically and mentally.
Lehner himself battled depression, drug addiction, and suicidal thoughts while with the Buffalo Sabres as recently as five years ago — using his experience and vulnerability to connect to an ever-growing audience.
So when he took to Twitter and set his sights on the Philadelphia Flyers and head coach, Alain Vigneault, red flags were understandably raised with Lehner implying that the organization pushes drugs on their players.
Is it common for workplaces to give out benzodiazepines to employees when they travel and Ambien?” Lehner asked. “Should that not be done by doctors or psychiatrists? Asking for a friend this doesn’t happen in Vegas to be clear. But I know many other teams. I also been in on teams that do?
“Philadelphia Flyers? Dinosaur coach treating people robots not human. Fire these dinosaurs. Fire Vigneault first story. I got proof.. try to shake your way out of this one ….
“And they say Ambien is sleeping pill it’s funny that rehab told me that’s why didn’t have rem sleep. 8 years no rem sleep. Great. But yeah just sleeping pills.”
Lehner has never played for Vigneault, but he’s encountered plenty of teammates that have played for him during the coach’s previous stints leading the Vancouver Canucks, New York Rangers, and now the Flyers.
The most such recent example is Nolan Patrick, a former No. 2 overall pick by the Flyers who was traded to Vegas this offseason.
This beef between the two has been one-sided and dates back to August with the netminder accusing Vigneault of hindering Flyers goalie Carter Hart’s development in the NHL.