|(NHL) Embarrassing Canucks coach canned
The US National Hockey League has slapped Vancouver Canucks head coach John Tortorella with a 15-day suspension calling his actions “an embarrassment to the league.''
Tortorella tried to enter the Calgary locker room to engage Flames' head coach Bob Hartley at the end of the first period of a game between the Canucks and Flames on January 18 in Vancouver.
“Mr. Tortorella's actions in attempting to enter the Calgary Flames locker room after the first period were both dangerous and an embarrassment to the League,'' said NHL vice president of hockey operations Colin Campbell.
“Coaches in the NHL bear the responsibility of providing leadership, even when emotions run high, and Mr. Tortorella failed in his responsibility to the game.''
The 55-year-old Tortorella, of the US, was angry with Hartley because the Flames' coach decided to start his fourth line for the opening faceoff.
Tortorella put out his enforcers and defenseman Kevin Bieksa moved up to take the draw and immediately started fighting with a Flames Kevin Westgarth. That spread to the other eight skaters, sparking a line brawl which lasted several minutes.
No one was seriously injured as the Canucks won the game 3-2.—AP