VANCOUVER -- John Tortorella was introduced as coach of the Vancouver Canucks on Tuesday, promising to rein in the combative personality that turned him into more of a caricature than a coach, at least when it comes to dealing with the media.
The players can expect more of the fire that made him famous -- or infamous.
Fired by the New York Rangers shortly after losing to the Boston Bruins in five games in the Eastern Conference Semifinals, Tortorella landed quickly on his feet with a five-year contract from a Canucks team trying to recover from a second-straight first-round exit that cost coach Alain Vigneault his job.
With Vigneault hired to replace Tortorella in New York last Friday, it essentially became an offseason coaching swap -- a first in the NHL, according to the Elias Sports Bureau -- between the Rangers and Canucks, with the two fired coaches talking "every other day" for two weeks, according to Tortorella.
"It is a little bizarre," Tortorella said, "but speaking for myself, at my stage of my career, to have this opportunity in Canada, in this city, I am pinching myself."