But it was the lead up to the pulling that was so interesting. As he was getting water from the bench, Lehner was seen waving to a fan in the front row, who had her phone up and her young son on FaceTime looking back at Lehner.
Shortly after, Lehner allowed a goal and was pulled from the net. On Thursday, he spoke about the incident.
“I understand how it looks,” Lehner told Times-Herald reporter Bill Hoppe. “People that know me, I go up, I’m going to have a drink. It’s a mom with a five-year-old kid waving in his pajamas. You know what? I’m going to wave back. I don’t care what anyone thinks.”
Over the years, Lehner has had a few moments where he’s lost his temper and gone off the handle so his reputation for that kind of behaviour on the ice has grown and Tuesday’s stare down of Bylsma was seen as the latest example of this characteristic.
Lehner also spoke to that reputation and his reaction to the coach who pulled him from the game.
“I understand what it’s coming from, it’s all entertainment to them, but it’s a real-life reaction from me, and I accept the responsibility of it. I got mad. I let in three goals in 10 minutes.”
He added that he had talked with Bylsma and that he “respects everything he thinks” but acknowledged his emotions don’t help the team.
“We’re moving forward,” he said.