Former Penguins player says team helped him get off drugs after accusations raised in NHL

WPXI Pittsburgh
WPXI Pittsburgh
Tom Sestito, No. 25 of the Pittsburgh Penguins, looks on from the bench during the game against Colorado Avalanche at PPG Paints Arena on Oct. 17, 2016, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

PITTSBURGH — After Vegas Golden Knights goaltender Robin Lehner accused multiple NHL teams of giving players pain medication without prescription, a former Penguins player also released his own experience on social media.

The issue was raised after Lehner issued a controversial Twitter thread over the weekend. He said he wanted to bring attention to the surgery issues between Jack Eichel and the Buffalo Sabres. On Twitter, Lehner accused teams of pushing benzodiazepines and Ambien to players without prescriptions and specifically tagged the NHL and NHL Player Safety.

Former Pittsburgh Penguins forward Tom Sestito said on Twitter days later “the amount of vitamin T (Toradol) and Ambien I was given is insane.” He then offered praise for the Penguins medical staff, saying they helped him get off the drugs and “were dumbfounded as to why I had all of it to begin with.”

Sestito went on to say he was once given a bottle of Toradol by a team doctor and “felt amazing.”

“I couldn’t raise my arm over my head 2 hours prior to a game. I was told take 3 pills as the team didn’t have cap space to call someone up. In 20 minutes I could do jumping jacks with 0 pain,” he posted.

Sestito spent the majority of three seasons in the Penguins organization.

The NHL and NHLPA ultimately met with Lehner about the allegations. Lehner said he was very encouraged by the discussion.

Benzodiazepines are depressants and include brand names such as Valium, Xanax and Ativan. They are prescribed to relieve anxiety and muscle spasms. Toradol is used for short-term management of moderate to severe pain.

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