John Tortorella will not be returning to the Columbus Blue Jackets as head coach next season. After six years in Ohio, Tortorella will be walking away from the Blue Jackets on his own, though it is uncertain if GM Jarmo Kekäläinen was interested in re-signing him anyway. The Blue Jackets missed the playoffs and finished last in the Central Division with a 18-26-12 record – good for 48 standings points in 56 games.
Tortorella’s time in Columbus, just like everywhere else he’s coached, was marred by controversy. His tenure in Columbus started by benching number-one center Ryan Johansen (he was later traded for Seth Jones) and ended by benching number-one center Pierre-Luc Dubois. The Blue Jackets would go on to trade PLD to Winnipeg for star winger Patrik Laine. Torts would bench Laine too. Reportedly, the Blue Jackets will aggressively try to land a first-line center this summer.
Torts was never afraid to show his huge personality even if it got him in trouble. Let’s take a look back at RMNB headlines related to John Tortorella throughout the years. They’re like Old Bay potato chips, spicy but delicious.