Jun 23 2013, 10:14pm CDT | by Poch de la Rosa
The Vancouver Sun's Daniel Wagner reports on June21 that Tortorella, the coach for whom Rangers general manager Glen Sather considers Alain Vigneault an offensive upgrade, is on his way to Western Canada to coach the Canucks.
Wagner cites multiple reports saying Tortorella was offered the head coaching position although this is not official just yet. Wagner says he's been spotted flying into Vancouver, having interviewed for the job opening twice.
ESPN's Pierre LeBrun also confirms Tortorella is expected to be Vancouver's next head coach. The two sides still need to negotiate a contract. LeBrun says other candidates such as John Stevens and Scott Arniel were informed they were no longer in the running, as verified by ESPN's sources.
The fiery head coach is headed for a possible re-brand in Vancouver, writes Wagner. Optimistic fans are referring to his 2004 season with the Tampa Bay Lightining when they won the Stanley Cup. In spite of Tortorella's personality, Wagner says he is very smart, tactical coach with a ton of experience which should earn him the respect of the Canucks.
Once the deal is finalized, Tortorella would inherit two of the top offensive talents in the NHL, twin brothers Henrik and Daniel Sedin. Pat Leonard of the New York Daily News says he is expected to replicate the success former head coach Vigneault had with Vancouver.
Tortorella won the Jack Adams Award as the 2004 NHL Coach of the Year in his Stanely Cup stint with the Lightning. In 13 seasons as head coach, he has compiled a record of 410-340-37 for a .541 winning percentage.
Poch de la Rosa
Poch de la Rosa follows all major U.S. sports: NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL and the NCAA. His favorite teams are the Colts, Braves, Pacers, Sharks and Irish, respectively.
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