Immediately following Vancouver’s 1-0 loss to L.A. on January 13, many called it a “moral victory.” The Canucks dominated in every facet of the game (physically and in scoring chances) except on the score board.
If Vancouver played that way every night, they’d come out on top more often than not.
But his message appears to have backfired since that game. Two days later, the Canucks lost 9-1 to Anaheim and they’ve since been in the death spiral we’ve all suffered through.
Head coach John Tortorella was on the Team 1040 today and he gave some (rare) insight into what he said in the Canucks’ dressing room before that Kings game:
“’I don’t care about the penalties tonight. We need to stand up for ourselves. Our number one goalie was hurt the last time we played. We’ve been shoved around. At least grab a chunk of flesh here.’”
“Quite honestly, through that game, I did not care.”
I’m assuming he means he didn’t care about the score. Hell of an admission.
On the lasting effects that game had on his team:
“Our team isn’t used to playing that way a lot… You need to stand up for yourselves at certain times. You need to have an edge to your game.”
And did standing up for yourselves work?
“Emotionally it was a loss, because we don’t do it that often… I think it hurt us. It got away from us.”
We appreciate the honesty, coach.
Asked about Alex Burrows’ struggles this season, Tortorella said he approached the coaches and they agreed to back off on his ice time to try to get him back to form. Torts concluded, “It hasn’t helped.”
He added that Burrows sustained a wrist injury from his fight with Toronto’s Phil Kessel, and he hopes he’ll be back at practice on February 19.
And on Daniel Sedin’s scoring struggles:
“I think sometimes he almost cares too much… he knows how important he is… sometimes it’s surrounded him a little bit.”
I don’t know what “it’s surrounded him” means, but it must be really bad.
Talking about the large minutes the Sedins have played:
“When I talk about their age, and when I talk about, ‘Are you tired?’ quite honestly, they bristle… I’m going to believe in my guys… they’re true pros and they would tell me.”
Sure they’d tell you – if they didn’t have the pride we know they have.
From what we all know of the Sedins, this “bristling” fits perfectly. They’d never admit to being tired and they’d never ask for less playing time or less responsibility.
It’s the coach’s job to figure out the most effective way to deploy them, and what Tortorella is doing right now isn’t working – wouldn’t you agree?