Columbus, Oh - Columbus Blue Jackets Head Coach John Tortorella was awarded the Jack Adams Award, presented annually to "the NHL coach adjudged to have contributed the most to his team's success" as voted on by the National Hockey League Broadcasters Association, the club and NHL announced tonight at the 2017 NHL Awards and NHL Expansion Draft held in Las Vegas. Mike Babcock of the Toronto Maple Leafs and Todd McLellan of the Edmonton Oilers were the other two finalists.
Tortorella led the Blue Jackets to the best season in the club's 17-year history in 2016-17 with a 50-24-8 record and 108 points, which was the fourth-best record in the NHL. The club's 108 points was a 32-point turnaround from 2015-16 when Columbus finished with a 34-40-8 mark and 76 points. This past season, the Blue Jackets ranked second in the League in goals-against average (2.35 per game), sixth in goals-for (3.01), ninth in penalty killing (83.3 percent) and 12th in power play efficiency (19.8 percent). The club also boasted the third-best goal differential in the League at +54.
Tortorella joined the Blue Jackets on Oct. 21, 2015 and has led the club to an 84-57-16 record (.586 points percentage). On Dec. 18, 2016, he became the first U.S.-born coach and the 24th in NHL history to record 500 wins in a 4-3 overtime victory at Vancouver. The Boston native is the winningest U.S.-born coach in NHL history as he has compiled a 530-432-131 record (.545) in 1,093 games with Columbus, Vancouver, NY Rangers and Tampa Bay.
Tortorella is the sixth coach in NHL history to win multiple Jack Adams Awards, joining Pat Burns (1988-89, 1992-93 and 1997-98), Scotty Bowman (1976-77 and 1995-96), Jacques Demers (1986-87 and 1987-88), Jacques Lemaire (1993-94 and 2002-03) and Pat Quinn (1979-80 and 1991-92). He previously won the award in 2003-04 after leading the Tampa Bay Lightning to a 46-22-14 record, Southeast Division title and a Stanley Cup championship. Tortorella was runner-up for the Jack Adams Award in 2002-03 after guiding Tampa Bay to the first division title in club history with a 36-25-21 mark and in 2011-12 with the New York Rangers, whom he led to an Atlantic Division title with a 51-24-7 record.