Vegas Golden Knights goaltender Robin Lehner accused NHL teams of medical malpractice, including offering Ambien and benzodiazepines to players without prescriptions.
Lehner made the allegations via Twitter Saturday in an effort to call attention to the surgery standoff between his former teammate Jack Eichel and the Buffalo Sabres, he told ESPN’s Emily Kaplan.
Lehner tweeted that Ambien and benzodiazepines are regularly given to players for travel and that “many teams without prescription just hand it out.” He added the Golden Knights were not one of those teams, but suggested the Philadelphia Flyers were one such club and called for head coach Alain Vigneault to be fired.
NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly told ESPN that the league is trying to set up an interview with Lehner for more information about his allegations. However, Lehner said he had not heard from the league as of Sunday afternoon.
Lehner also told ESPN that he was unsettled that more people weren’t talking about the dispute between Eichel and the Sabres. The veteran netminder voiced support for Eichel in a series of tweets on Saturday.
Eichel missed most of the 2020-21 campaign due to a herniated disk in his neck, and he and the Sabres have been in a stalemate on how to proceed with the injury ever since.
The Sabres want Eichel to repair the ailment with neck-fusion surgery, while the Boston University product wants to undergo an artificial disc replacement procedure. Buffalo has denied Eichel’s preferred method and continues to push for fusion surgery.
Lehner played with Eichel in Buffalo from 2015-18 before joining the New York Islanders and later the Chicago Blackhawks. He has been with the Golden Knights since 2019.