New York Rangers head coach John Tortorella is a man infamous for never mincing words, holding back or pulling any punches when expressing his opinions. He was beside himself following what he perceived to be a lackluster effort in a 3-1 loss to the Buffalo Sabres on Tuesday night. And he made his feelings known during his postgame presser, viciously tearing into his team.
Tortorella went so far as to refuse to give the Sabres any credit, save for their third line, as he brutally savaged the effort by his players, saying, “I thought we stunk.”
But wait, there’s more. The fuming Torts provided us perhaps the money quote by a coach so far in this abbreviated NHL regular season.
First, here is how Tortorella opened up the savagery, via the New York Post: “I don’t think the Sabres were the hungrier team, I thought we stunk,” adding, “I’m not going to give Buffalo any credit. I will give their third line credit, they outplayed our top players and that can’t happen.”
Tortorella continued: “I couldn’t be more disgusted and disappointed with the way our top guys played, with the way we handled ourselves through it,” Tortorella said. “That team was ripe to be beaten and we simply did not play the way we’re supposed to play.”
The Rangers coach also appears tired of speaking on behalf of his players, saying, “Did you ask them? Did you ask them any questions?” Tortorella said, growing increasingly perturbed. “I don’t know why I always have to answer all these questions. You should ask them occasionally about what happened.”
But then, Tortorella, livid as ever, drops a line for the ages, employing the word “suck” three times in one sentence: “We suck, and we suck at a time we can’t suck.” Superb.
The Rangers find themselves navigating through a middling season, sitting at 13-10-2, good for 28 points and third place in the Atlantic Division and leaving the team barely clinging to the 8th seed in the Eastern Conference. Perhaps Tortorella’s brutal assault on the players will pay dividends. Perhaps not.
Either way, the guy puts it all out there and isn’t afraid to call it like he sees it. Perhaps that is refreshing and entertaining for outsiders, but it’s likely a bit terrifying for the players. Unless they have grown tired of his tirades and have begun to tune him out. The team’s play down the home stretch probably will reveal which is most accurate.