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Tortorella used time off to analyze individual Canucks

by James Murphy

MONTREAL -- In what had to be categorized as a very relaxed John Tortorella press conference, the Vancouver Canucks coach told the media at Bell Centre after the morning skate Thursday that there was some good that came from his recent 15-day suspension.

Tortorella, who admits he still is familiarizing himself with the Canucks organization and players in his first season as coach, used his time away from the rink to focus more on individual players.

"There's no question because I wasn't involved in the day-to-day stuff I watched the games on TV and my video coach sent me all the stuff onto my computer," Tortorella said. "It gave me a lot more time to digest a lot of our concept. I spent more time on individual players because I couldn't be there working with them the next day or whatever it may be. So I filled my time that way, and it was a really interesting perspective for me because I've never been in this situation.

"It helped me, especially so early on with a new team and organization, I think understand some of the things with players and some of the things they're doing on the ice because I had more time to do it."

Tortorella was asked with the Canucks' current struggles, did this evaluation from afar change his thoughts about where each player fits into his team concept or plan?

"No, not really. When I'm talking about that it gave me more time to focus on individual players and not so much on the team concept but just to watch their game," Tortorella said. "To watch [Alexandre Burrows] a little bit more under a microscope because we want to help him, and then some of the kids because we don't see them that often. It was just a whole different perspective for me. And I don't want you to read too much into it but because I had nothing else to do it allowed me more time on each player. And I think that's important because I'm still learning."

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