File this under “the worst thing I’ve read today on the internet”.
The media loves (and I mean, loves) the John Tortorella grave dance. Other than the post-game pint, crapping ink all over Torts is their favorite pastime. Which is fine. I get it. Torts is a big meanie. He doesn’t like sports writers. Instead of “NO SOUP FOR YOU”, it’s “NO QUOTES FOR YOU”, which makes a writer’s life difficult. We all encounter people who are tough to deal with in life, get a helmet.
But the ever beating drum of unfounded, misguided bullshit about Torts shortcomings is more offensive to me than anything the fiery coach has ever done to the media.
Take this article for example:
Yes Jason. We notice the difference. The 2011-2012 Tortorella team somehow made it to the Eastern Conference Final with Michael Del Zotto as their fourth defenseman. They somehow made it with Steve Eminger as their sixth defenseman. That’s something Tortorella should be praised, not criticized for.
Eminger has been in the AHL the past two seasons. Del Zotto was traded for Kevin Klein and played so poorly for the Predators this season, that there is a question as to whether or not he will be re-signed. The 2011-2012 defensive core was a far cry from the elite unit that the Rangers now possess. Vigneault has the luxury of a deep blue line that Tortorella didn’t. I have no idea how this is an indictment of Tortorella’s coaching ability. In fact, Tortorella “playing the hell” out of McDonagh and Girardi in the playoffs was the right decision. He had no other choice but to do that.
The Rangers fell to the Devils in the Conference Final that year because they ran out of gas. But that was as much of a product of an imperfect roster as it was Tortorella’s coaching tactics. Especially when it comes to his utilization of the defensemen. He squeezed every last drop of production out of a roster that really had no business advancing to the Eastern Conference Final nor finishing with the best record in the East.
Look, we’re not trying to pile on Tortorella here — he’s won a Stanley Cup as a coach; Vigneault still hasn’t — but the current Rangers, even with that “stupid schedule,” don’t appear anywhere close to running out of gas, and that couldn’t be said two years ago.
Granted, it’s possible New York just has more depth now, and Vigneault is the lucky recipient of that. But there’s a distinct philosophical difference there — one guy plays the hell out of his top players, the other doesn’t.
Emphasis on the bold here. So what is the point of this article? The Rangers absolutely do have more depth on the blue line. This is an undeniable fact; philosophical differences be damned. But nah, lets throw some more mud on Torts just for the hell of it. Whether that was or wasn’t the intention of the author, this article is grossly misguided.