The best of John Tortorella
During his tenure as head coach of the Rangers, John Tortorella has never shied away from letting his true feelings be known. Here are some memorable moments, tirades and post-game press conferences.
1. Tortorella not happy with the Penguins
April 5, 2012
Tortorella was upset about a knee-on-knee hit to Derek Stepan delivered by the Penguins' Brooks Orpik in the final five minutes of the game, which the Rangers lost 5-2.
"It's a cheap, dirty hit. I wonder what would happen if we did it to their two whining stars over there. I wonder what would happen?" asked Torts. "It's one of the most arrogant organizations in the league. They whine about this stuff all the time, and look what happens."
2. Tortorella lashes out at the referees
Jan. 2, 2012
The Rangers walked away from the 2012 Winter Classic with an overtime victory, but it wasn't without controversy. The Rangers were hit with three penalties in the last five minutes. Torts described the officiating as "disgusting."
"Maybe [the referees] wanted to get it to an overtime," Tortorella quipped. "I'm not sure if they have meetings about that or what." He was fined $30K for his comments.
3. “24/7” episode vs. Maple Leafs at MSG
In an episode of HBO's "24/7" series, Tortorella unleashed some mean rants on his team during intermissions. During one memorable intermission, Torts ripped into his team for not playing hard against Toronto's Phil Kessel.
"With Kessel, if you have a chance, finish him. He is a good player, but don't — — your pants on him."
4. Torts agnry after loss to Islanders
Dec. 16, 2009
After a 2-1 loss to the Islanders, reporters pressed Tortorella for an explanation to the Rangers’ poor play. “When we play like - - for 20 minutes, in a game like this in a back-to-back situation, it’s unacceptable... I wish I could give you a - - explanation about it. I can’t.”
5. Tortorella vs. Joe Thornton
Nov. 1, 2011
Tortorella fired back at San Jose Sharks captain Joe Thornton for calling the Rangers "soft" after an October game in 2011. "Joe's a heck of a player, but here's a player popping off about our team, and Joe hasn't won a — — — — thing in this league. He could go down as a player, being one of the better players in our league never to win anything. So what he should do is just shut up. It was uncalled for, it was classless, and I've never had it happen like that before."
6. Tortorella vs. Capitals fan
April 24, 2009
Tortorella lost his cool with the Rangers trailing by four goals during Game 5 of the first round of the 2009 playoffs against the Capitals. Fans said Tortorella squirted water through two panels of glass and threw the bottle into the stands. After an argument with some fans, Torts grabbed a hockey stick, but was restrained before the situation went any further. He was suspended for one game during the series.
7. Tortorella owns reporter
April 12, 2009
On the final day of the 2008-09 regular season, the Rangers defeated the Flyers, 4-3, and Brandon Dubinsky scored a short-handed goal. After the game, a reporter made it a point to mention to Torts that it was the first short-handed goal the Flyers have given up all season. The reporter asked if by giving up the goal, it killed the Flyers' momentum.
"No. We didn’t even know. That's a pretty dumb question to ask anyway," responded Tortorella.
8. Tortorella vs. another writer
Jan. 21, 2010
In a post-game press conference, Tortorella refused to answer any questions from New York Post writer Larry Brooks. Tortorella humiliated Brooks. “\[Wade\]Redden sticks up for his temmates the other night and you come out with some saractsic article.” “It was funny,” said Brooks. “It was funny?” asked Tortorella. “You were probably beat up at the bus stop most of the time,” said Tortorella. Brooks once again attempted to ask a question until Tortorella cut him off. "Just go stand somewhere else," Tortorella barked.
9. Tortorella loses his cool
April 14, 2011
Prior to Game 2 of the 2011 playoffs against the Capitals, Tortorella felt Brooks was trying to box him into a corner with a question about the Rangers having their backs against the wall. "No, you try to use my words and box me into a corner all the time. Can I get another question? I went in here in a pretty good mood today, too," said Tortorella. "So did I," responded Brooks. "Well you obviously — — that up, didn't you?" said Tortorella.
10. Tortorella goes off on Sean Avery
Dec. 2, 2008
During a stint on TSN as a hockey analyst shortly before he took the Rangers job, Tortorella had some strong comments about then-Dallas Stars player Sean Avery for his comments about an ex-girlfriend.
"He's a selfish — — . That's what he is. It's gotten so bad here. He's embarrassed himself, he's embarrassed his organization. More importantly, he's embarrassed his teammates who have to kind of have to look out for him here now. It's the NHL. He's embarrassed the whole league. Send him home." After Torts took the Rangers job, the club picked up Avery.