Three days after calling out mistakes made by officials in the Columbus Blue Jackets 3-2 SO loss to the Chicago Blackhawks, John Tortorella has been fined $20,000 by the NHL. On top of that, he has been given an additional fine of $25,000 if he makes “similar inappropriate” comments again.
Blue Jackets' Tortorella fined $20,000. pic.twitter.com/gJNNqoTgSW— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) January 1, 2020
Colin Campbell, the NHL’s Director of Player Operations, has been at the center of all this aftermath. First, he released the following statement that reads like an eighth grader trying to hit the word count on their essay. Then, we became aware through the media that he will be lobbying Commissioner Gary Bettman to implement a fine on Tortorella for his comments.
#NHL director of hockey operations Colin Campbell tells The Athletic that #CBJ coach John Tortorella's post-game comments were “unprofessional along with unacceptable.”— Aaron Portzline (@Aportzline) December 30, 2019
Campbell has spoken with Tortorella and CBJ GM Jarmo Kekalainen and says the league is “dealing with it."
Per Colin Campbell, NHL director of hockey ops, a lengthy explanation about why time wasn't added back on the clock after the #Blackhawks too many men penalty in OT last night plus a chastising statement about Tortorella's postgame comments -> pic.twitter.com/UAB49TxgM2— Brian Hedger (@BrianHedger) December 30, 2019
#NHL director of hockey operations Colin Campbell will meet with commissioner Gary Bettman at Winter Classic to further discuss a possible fine for #CBJ coach John Tortorella in the wake of his post-game comments on Sunday.— Aaron Portzline (@Aportzline) December 31, 2019
My take this is that it all looks very childish from Campbell and the league. Fining Tortorella was not off the standard at all, lots of coaches have been fined in the past. What did it for me was the Director of Hockey Ops seemingly taking it so personally. The statement he wrote carried incorrect grammar and read very unprofessionally. Then to go lobby the commissioner at the Winter Classic? And then to spend three days on a decision? That’s a lot.
Another thing I don’t like about this is the league’s insistence that they were in the right, despite the evidence against it. You can read in my first Lightning Round on the matter that I think the league and officials should have to talk to the media after games and release detailed explanations (and even recordings) on controversial calls after the games. Other North American leagues, namely the NBA, do this. Why not the NHL?
This past decade — heck two decades dating back to the toe in the crease — have been awful for officiating. No one knows the rules anymore and everything is so subjective and left in the referee’s “judgement” that there is no consistency. When the NHL implemented video review, they dipped their toe in the water of getting the calls right. They tried to band-aid a solution (offsides) by looking at the symptoms rather than the causes.
I bet if you polled North American sports fans and gave them a driver’s test-type quiz, hockey fans would know the least about the rules of the game and we would probably all fail. We do not know the rules of our game because the league does not share the who, what, when, where, why, and how. Nothing is consistent.
Admit your flaws, take it on the chin, and make your game easier to understand because all the color is gone from my hair and my forehead is starting to look like a young Ryan Getzlaf.
- The Dallas Stars won the Winter Classic over the visiting Nashville Predators in the annual Winter Classic by a score of 4-2. The game was played at the Cotton Bowl this year and featured a runway of Stars dressed as cowboys. I recommend going through Achariya’s timeline because it’s a love letter to southern hockey.
Awesome entrance by the Dallas Stars, who went as a team to Lucchese on Dec. 12 to get done up. pic.twitter.com/4csHdPbVY6— Nick Cotsonika (@cotsonika) January 1, 2020
So for my dream Battle of Flori winter classic, should we make them all wear bathing suits for media spots? https://t.co/vqPaSKUMq8— Achariya (@tanyarezak) January 2, 2020
- 2:44 into the game, Corey Perry brained Ryan Ellis with an elbow and was immediately ejected (see that, Colin?). Since the game was in the middle of a football stadium, Perry had to take a long walk from the rink to the dressing rooms. The NBCSN broadcast stayed on Perry the whole way and Twitter had lots of fun throwing some music over top of “the Corey Perry walk of shame.”
The Corey Perry walk of shame, paired with "Boulevard of Broken Dreams" by Green Day just hits different. pic.twitter.com/o5dn10LmXY— Hockey Daily 365 (@HockeyDaily365) January 1, 2020
Corey Perry long walk except it’s clown shoes squeaking pic.twitter.com/5Pemrah1Ta— aaaaaa (@straprights) January 1, 2020
Corey Perry walk of shame with sad violin music pic.twitter.com/CFI9osJiC7— Hockey Central (@HockeyCentraI) January 1, 2020
Corey Perry's walk of shame but his footsteps are Squidward's pic.twitter.com/CY5BQAYWzt— NSH Housecats (@NSHHousecats) January 2, 2020
The Corey Perry walk of shame but I added 500 miles by the Proclaimers pic.twitter.com/2WEqbBjwpU— Maddy Harris (@maddelynharris) January 1, 2020
Corey Perry’s walk of shame, but I added the penalty song from The World Juniors pic.twitter.com/NwRj0QPEFM— Gongshow Gary (@SuckMyDeke) January 1, 2020