Derek Lalonde didn’t hear from NHL officials about being ejected during Tuesday’s win against the Pittsburgh Penguins. But he did hear from his 12-year-old daughter.
She was the only person who offered a “strong opinion” about what transpired.
“She wanted to email the league and get her two cents in and she was a little down on dad’s language, too,” Lalonde said.
Lalonde was given a game misconduct by referee Garret Rank for dissenting too much about the lack of a goalie interference call. He lost his coach’s challenge. Hockey is not major league baseball. NHL coaches aren’t ejected often. Lalonde was only the third NHL coach to be ejected since 2018.
Detroit captain Dylan Larkin was surprised that Lalonde was given the game misconduct. He said he has heard worse exchanges between coaches and officials.
“Probably the demonstrative reaction after the goal was (it) not within our culture, within our demeanor,” Lalonde said. “That probably led to what happened going forward. It’s the National Hockey League. We wear suits, we’re calm, we’re collected. Not our culture. It’s been for 100-plus years. What it should be. I expect to hear from the league. And I expect them to scold me rightfully that this is not how we act.”
Lalonde said the referee was doing his job, “trying to manage the game and get it moving.” He has a plan moving forward.
“Just be myself,” Lalonde said. “You just build that over time. That ref has a history of kicking everyone out. He’s had a history of having a short fuse and kicking people out. That’s probably on me and knowing what I’m dealing with and who I’m dealing with. He handled it extremely calm. Never raised his voice. He just calmly skated away and kicked me out. Of course, I’m new in the league and they don’t want to hear much from a first-time coach.”
Derek Lalonde can't believe he was ejected from the Red Wings game.
"I was a little shocked. I don't know if it warranted that," he said. "As far as the call, I would make that challenge 100 out of 100 times." pic.twitter.com/FUbeO6Otzv
— Brad Galli (@BradGalli) March 29, 2023
The Red Wings coach accepted responsibility for his actions. “Probably on me doing a better job of reading the situation, controlling my emotions, not putting myself in that situation,” Lalonde said.
Lalonde was never ejected at the NHL level before Tuesday. However, he was tossed once coaching in the United States Hockey League.
“And we came back from three goals in that game,” He said. “So, I don’t want to waste them. But we’re 2-0 on my lifetime ejections.”