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John Tortorella wants to coach in the NHL next season

Jared Clinton
By:
The Hockey News
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John Tortorella wants to coach in the NHL next season

Jared Clinton
By:

After a season spent watching from the sidelines, coach John Tortorella wants to get back behind the bench. Tortorella's last coaching gig came with the Vancouver Canucks during the 2012-13 lockout-shortened campaign, but he was let go from that position after just one season. With 446 wins, Tortorella is the winngest American-born coach in NHL history.

In May 2013, coach John Tortorella was let go by the New York Rangers. One year later, May 2014, he was fired by the Canucks following one season behind the Vancouver bench. Now, in May 2015, news comes that Tortorella is looking at getting back into the league as a coach as early as next season. According to Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman, Tortorella is
looking to get back into the game, and it wouldn't come as much of a surprise if he was trying to do so as early at the 2015-16 campaign. With several coaching vacancies throughout the league, it would make sense that Tortorella's name comes up at this time.

One interesting note from Friedman's reporting, however, is that it appears Tortorella said he jumped back into coaching too soon after his firing from the gig in New York. Fired on May 23 by the Rangers, Tortorella had landed with the Canucks by one month later, on June 25, 2013. After just one year campaign, he was fired by Vancouver as part of a massive organizational restructuring that also resulted in the firing of then-Canucks GM Mike Gillis. Tortorella has long been one of the most fiery coaches in the league and was made famous for his tirades on the bench and in the media, known for lashing out at officials and, on occasion, reporters in post-game interactions. However, in January of the 2013-14 season, Tortorella found himself in hot water for an off-ice incident during a January game against the Calgary Flames. The game in question began with a line brawl in which Tortorella sent Kevin Bieksa, a rugged defenseman, to take the opening faceoff as a response to Calgary coach Bob Hartley's starting lineup. During the intermission, Tortorella attempted to storm the Flames' dressing room to get at Hartley. For his actions, Tortorella was given a 15-day suspension without pay. Over his 13 seasons as an NHL bench boss, Tortorella has a record of 446-375-37-78 in 936 games. He has spent time with the Tampa Bay Lightning, Rangers and Canucks, with his most successful season coming in 2003-04 when the Lightning had a 46-22-8-6 record in the regular season and followed it up with a Stanley Cup run in which they lost only seven games en route to capturing the championship. Even following a year watching from the sidelines, Tortorella is the winningest American-born coach in NHL history with 446 wins. Nashville Predators coach Peter Laviolette, with 436 wins, is in second place.

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John Tortorella wants to coach in the NHL next season