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Your Call: Is Tortorella the right choice to coach the Canucks?

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TSN.ca Staff
6/25/2013 4:22:50 PM
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The Vancouver Canucks have named John Tortorella the 17th head coach in team history, replacing Alain Vigneault, who was fired following a first-round exit at the hands of the San Jose Sharks.

The 55-year-old Boston native carries with him both a history of success and controversy over his time as a bench boss in the NHL. The question is; is he the right choice to coach the Canucks?

Tortorella had his best season as an NHL head coach in 2003-04, when he led the Tampa Bay Lightning to the Stanley Cup. He also received the Jack Adams Award as coach of the year at the end of the campaign.

He spent six seasons behind the bench for the Lightning, compiling a 239-222-36-38 record before being fired after missing the playoffs in 2008.

After half a season away from the game, Tortorella was named head coach of the New York Rangers. He would spend five more seasons at the helm before once again finding himself out of a job.

In 319 regular-season games with the Rangers, he went 171-115-29. He also reached the playoffs in four of his five seasons.

His time as a head coach has not been without its controversies.

In 2009, Tortorella was suspended one-game for squirting a fan with water and throwing a water bottle that struck a fan during the playoffs.

He has also become known for colourful press conferences and run-ins with media members.

The last seven seasons under Vigneault have been filled with near misses for the Canucks, as they have watched regular season success turn into playoff disappointment.

The 2010-11 season was the closest the Canucks came to capturing the championship, as they were one game from the Stanley Cup before losing Games 6 and 7 to the Boston Bruins.

General manager Mike Gillis said after the 2012-13 season that the team needed to head in a different direction if they were going to achieve at the level of their talent.

"We lost consecutive games in the last two playoff years, and there comes a point in time where the message has to change and we have to be better," Gillis said at the year-end news conference. "And we simply didn't get the result we expected."

Is Tortorella the right head coach to help the Vancouver Canucks get over the hump and finally win the Stanley Cup?

It's Your! Call.

John Tortorella (Photo: Scott Levy/Getty Images )

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(Photo: Scott Levy/Getty Images )
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