Hockey world reacts to passing of Wayne Fleming

Tuesday, 03.26.2013 / 6:44 PM
John Kreiser  - Columnist

The death of longtime NHL assistant coach Wayne Fleming, who passed Monday at age 62 after battling brain cancer, has sparked numerous condolences and reminiscences from some of the players he coached and the people he worked with during more than 30 years in hockey.

Fleming's last position was as an assistant coach with the Tampa Bay Lightning, helping to develop the team that came within a goal of the 2011 Stanley Cup Final, when he first left the team to battle his illness.

Several Lightning players were among those who took to Twitter to share their feelings.

Steven Stamkos @RealStamkos91

Thoughts and prayers go out to the entire Fleming family. Wayne was a great coach and even better man.

Victor Hedman @heds77

Thoughts and prayers go out to the entire Fleming family. Wayne was a great coach but an even better person. He will be missed deeply.

Nathan Thompson @NateThompson44

It was an honor to know and play for Wayne Fleming. My deepest condolences go out to his whole family. #hewillbemissed #rip

Lightning players weren't the only ones with fond memories of Fleming. Edmonton Oilers forward Sam Gagner, who was with the team during Fleming's one season there, said he was fortunate to have been able to work with him.

Sam Gagner @89SGagner

Sad to hear of the passing of Wayne Fleming. Was lucky enough to have him as a coach for a season. A great person. RIP Flemmer.

Eric Nystrom, now with the Dallas Stars, also said Fleming aided in his development.

Eric Nystrom @enystrom23

So sad to hear about Wayne Fleming passing. One of my 1st pro coaches. He could sure run a bag skate. hockey lost a great man today! RIP

Players weren't the only ones tweeting their condolences. Calgary Flames president and CEO Ken King expressed his feelings via the team's Twitter site.

Calgary Flames ‏@NHLFlames

"Wayne was a great coach, a tremendous family man and friend to us all."

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