Originally written March 21, 2012 on Goon's World:

The Rangers and the Devils started out their game the other night and the war of words has continued. I hope these two teams play each other in the playoffs, they are going to beat the crap out of each other, that what a rivalry is. Nice to see a player like Stu Bickel who has little talent but to fight; can actually win a face off...

Personally, I don't have a problem with visiting coach handing in a line up card like that, it sends a message to the other team that your team is not going to be pushed around and be bullied.
Ranger Rants --- DeBoer handed in a starting lineup with pugilists Eric Boulton, Ryan Carter and Cam Janssen, to which Tortorella said he felt compelled to counter with a starting line of Stu Bickel, Mike Rupp and Brandon Prust. That, of course, turned into a staged, three-on-three line brawl that resulted in 40 penalty minutes with the game just three seconds old. After the game, DeBoer said of Tortorella, “I guess in John’s world you can come into our building and start your tough guys but we can’t do the same in here. He’s either got short-term memory loss or he’s a hypocrite.”

“I read it,” Tortorella said of DeBoer’s comment. “I think Peter needs to jog his memory as far as the starting lineups that I’ve put in over in their building and really, basically, just shut up. And I need to also. I think the situation last night is disrespectful to players and I think we took a backwards step. I get put in a position when he puts a lineup like that out - and I’m not sure what’s going to happen if I put my top players out - so I have to answer the way I need to answer. Really, just look at the two lineups and some of the things he’s done through the games here, again, I don’t want to coach his team, but just shut up.

“Fighting’s part of the game, that’s a big part of the game,” Tortorellla said. “But it doesn’t need to be manufactured. In that type of game, Jersey and the Rangers, there were going to be fights. But it’s really gotten old for me, the staged fights, it doesn’t need to be manufactured. Nowadays in our league, if a guy gets hit hard, clean, everybody’s looking to fight. Where hard checking and hard hitting is part of the game. And that crap at the beginning of the game, to try to manipulate it into it, I just don’t think it’s right for the game. I think there’s enough of it, and there always will be and there should be. I’m certainly not one of the pacifists that think fighting should be out of the game, that’s a big part of our game. But let the players decide. I just don’t think coaches should be putting players in situations that basically dictates fighting.”
Related articles
  • Rangers' Tortorella: Devils coach needs to 'shut up' (nypost.com)
  • Tortorella's retort to Devils' DeBoer: 'Shut up' (espn.go.com)
  • Tortorella-DeBoer Feud Heating Up (newyork.cbslocal.com)

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