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Tortorella Leaving Blue Jackets As Coach Following NHL Season [Report]

According to a report by TSN’s Darren Dreger, the buzz is that John Tortorella will not be back with the Columbus Blue Jackets next season.

According to a report by TSN’s Darren Dreger, the buzz around the league is that John Tortorella will not be back with the Columbus Blue Jackets next season. From the information gathered, Tortorella is effectively done with the team and he’ll let his current contract, which is up for renewal at the end of this season expire. The Blue Jackets organization is not tipping their hand, but it is expected the coach will not return for the 2021-22 season.

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Dreger reports that Tortorellla is not expected to sign a contract extension after a tumultuous season. The organization rarely went more than a week where there wasn’t some sort of controversy surrounding the roster. First it was the status of Pierre-Luc Dubois, then it was the trade that brought in Patrik Laine — who hasn’t exactly fit in well. There’s been the on and off drama with forward Max Domi and there’s always talk around the way Torts deals with the media and the messaging he tries to send to his players.

There are reports the Blue Jackets, specifically GM Jarmo Kekalinen would like Tortorella to stay, but it won’t surprise anyone if the coach and team wind up going their separate ways. If so, Tortorella will become a free agent and it’s likely a team will give him a serious look, despite what all went down this season.

Tortorella Still Has Fans

For all the detractors to Tortorella’s style, there are as many, if not more players who absolutely love playing for him. He’s consistent and doesn’t play favorites, regardless of your “status” in the NHL. He has standards, he promotes team play over individual accomplishments and he’s holds everyone accountable.

John Tortorella and Patrik Laine
John Tortorella and Patrik Laine

If he leaves, it will be after his 5th season with the Blue Jackets and after three straight playoff performances. This season might be one of the rare occasions where his team doesn’t get in. The team sold off multiple assets at this year’s trade deadline and it’s not clear exactly where the roster will be headed in the next couple of seasons.

Next: Canucks Will Begin Talks With Pending UFA D Nikita Tryamkin

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