Randy Carlyle Provides Bizarre Analysis on Cause of Concussions

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistApril 6, 2013

Toronto Maple Leafs head coach Randy Carlyle has a theory on what causes concussions, and it's clear he doesn't have a medical degree—or anything remotely like it.

Carlyle decided to comment on the head injury Joffrey Lupul suffered against the Flyers on Thursday. Obviously woozy and disoriented on the ice, Toronto has yet to call Lupul's injury a concussion. 

Yet when asked about Lupul and concussions, Carlyle exposed in a very plain-as-day fashion that he shouldn't be dispensing medical advice. Here is what the Leafs coach said, via SportsNet's Michael Grange:

I have a theory on concussions. I think the reason there’s so much more of them obviously the impact and the size of the equipment and the size of the player—but there’s another factor: Everyone wears helmets, and under your skull when you have a helmet on, there’s a heat issue.

Everyone sweats a lot more, the brain swells. The brain is closer to the skull. Think about it. Does it make sense? Common sense?

A longtime NHL defenseman, there is likely some personal experience that helped bring Carlyle to this opinion. The soon-to-be 55-year-old head coach never wore a helmet during his 17-year professional career (h/t Sporting News), where he played for five different franchises.

More salient to this discussion is the fact Carlyle never spoke to a medical professional about his theory.

While concussion research remains very much in its infancy, one has to believe any medical expert on the planet would quickly dismiss Carlyle’s thoughts.

Video Play Button
Videos you might like

And, disconcertingly, Carlyle’s theory shows the overall lack of knowledge coaches have about concussions. The Leafs' head man called concussions a “bad word” when refusing to say whether Lupul, who just so happens to be Toronto’s best player, had been diagnosed with the injury. 

There will be many who will take this quote out of context and twist it into something more sinister—that the Maple Leafs, and Carlyle in particular, are feigning ignorance as the team battles for positioning in the Eastern Conference playoff race. 

But Carlyle seemed sincere with his theory. He acknowledged he wasn’t a medical expert, yet still decided to confidently divulge his thoughts—as if Carlyle thought abolishing helmets could solve this silly thing. 

Perhaps that’s the scariest thing of all. 

Related

    New CBA details and how they affect the Leafs

    Toronto Maple Leafs logo
    Toronto Maple Leafs

    New CBA details and how they affect the Leafs

    Jon Steitzer
    via TheLeafsNation

    Report: Next season might start this year

    Toronto Maple Leafs logo
    Toronto Maple Leafs

    Report: Next season might start this year

    KatyaKnappe
    via Pension Plan Puppets

    NHL Targets Dec. 1 for ’20-’21

    League unveils proposed schedule for playoffs and offseason with season opener to start December 1 (TSN)

    Toronto Maple Leafs logo
    Toronto Maple Leafs

    NHL Targets Dec. 1 for ’20-’21

    Rob Goldberg
    via Bleacher Report

    Devils Hire Rangers Assistant

    NJ to name Lindy Ruff as HC and remove interim tag from GM Tom Fitzgerald (NHL Network)

    NHL logo
    NHL

    Devils Hire Rangers Assistant

    Scott Polacek
    via Bleacher Report