James Reimer-Randy Carlyle riff far too public

The Lightning players whoop it up after Radko Gudas beat James Reimer with a soft wrist shot from...

The Lightning players whoop it up after Radko Gudas beat James Reimer with a soft wrist shot from the blue line 59 seconds into the game Wednesday night in Toronto. Reimer turned in another sketchy effort after coach Randy Carlyle was critical of his play the night before. (Jack Boland/QMI Agency)

STEVE SIMMONS, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:25 PM ET

TORONTO - For almost all his time coaching in Toronto, Randy Carlyle has played the media game to perfection.

He has smiled on cue, been self-deprecating, occasionally funny, answered all the right questions with almost all the right answers, and somehow has deftly avoided dropping the kind of self-inflicted bombs that figuratively would blow up in the face of his predecessor, Ron Wilson.

Until Tuesday night.

When the hockey bomb went off. When a verbal miscue — a lost moment, really — changed everything. Whatever the relationship was between James Reimer and Carlyle, it can’t be the same anymore. Whatever trust was left, if there is any, seems to be gone.

At a time when a coach needed to protect a goaltender he was in need of for Game 71 and who knows how much longer, Carlyle allowed the emotion of yet another disappointing defeat, another self-induced loss, to get the better of him.


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