Kukla's Korner

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John Tortorella No Longer A Lame-Duck Coach

from Michael Arace of the Columbus Dispatch,

The adage that “coaches are hired to be fired” has been hammered into the Jackets’ misshapen history. The Jackets have been eating portions of coaches’ contracts from the time Doug MacLean selected himself to replace Dave King behind the bench in January 2003. It is a regular cost of doing business in major-league sports, yes, but when you eat a million here and a million there, pretty soon you’re talking about some real money. And this isn’t Real Madrid we’re talking about here.

So, Tortorella’s one-year extension makes sense. It maintains the momentum gained from a 108-point season. These Jackets are capable of pushing deep into the playoffs, and it would have been folly to stage a protracted contract war with the league’s coach of the year. Here in Columbus, we don’t even want to think about a contract war.

Jackets management has, generally speaking, done a fine job and deserves to be recognized for stockpiling assets. At the same time, it is hard to forget what embarrassing depths it can reach in the middle of a contract dispute. Two words: Ryan Johansen.

I’m not saying that John Davidson, president of hockey operations, Jarmo Kekalainen, the general manager, and assistant general manager Bill Zito, the point man on most negotiations, would again play the public-humiliation card, but they did it once, and the memory is a stain that is slow to fade.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: john+tortorella

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com