Tortorella Fined

The NHL issued Columbus head coach John Tortorella a $25,000 fine for walking out of his press conference last week.

Tortorella, noted hothead and arguably the best American-born coach in NHL history, cut his post-game press session short after the Lightning eliminated his Blue Jackets in five games.

Brace yourself for a signature Just Wide room-temperature take: This is dumb.

These Q&A sessions almost never produce any interesting or illuminating observations, and why would we expect them to? The people behind the mics aren’t analysts; they’re jocks. It’s not their job to tell the story of the game they just played — that responsibility lies with the ink-stained wretches stinking up the room from outside the camera frame. Athletes should compete, coaches should coach, and reporters should be able to make sense of what happens in a game by watching it.

Ironically, this (minor, and completely understandable) eruption of pique made for a much better round of stories than any set of quotes Tortorella could have offered. The league’s punishing him for giving an uncommonly interesting press coference.

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