Originally written on Red Light District Hockey  |  Last updated 5/17/12
Rangers-coach-tortorella
Has John Tortorella’s post-game shtick lost its charm? Yes, but so has the constant complaining over the New York Rangers head coach’s curt attitude towards the media.

The complaining in itself has become more annoying than Tortorella’s post-game non-answer answers. Last night after the Rangers fell to the New Jersey Devils, 3-2, in Game 2, the New York head coach spent all of 70 seconds answering questions from the media. His answers consisted of “yes,” “no,” and “I’ll keep it in the room.”

The passive responses once again set off a firestorm of complaints from attending media and analysts.

“John Tortorella's playoff non-interviews were amusing shtick for a while. Now they have become annoying and unprofessional,” Newsday’s sports media reporter Neil Best tweeted.

Craig Button of NHL Network was also less tan amused by Torts’ act calling it a travesty. He added, “It's a joke, he's making it a joke, it's an unnecessary joke, so stop it.” And Adrian Dater of the Denver Post has been less than thrilled with Tortorella’s actions calling him a "little bully” and suggesting the media boycott “his tired act.”

In a New York Daily News article, written back on May 10, Bob Raissman suggested that Tortorella’s attitude might even scare away the casual hockey fan if New York advances to the Stanley Cup Final.

That last notion is silly at best, but as you can see everyone is weighing in on the curmudgeon Rangers head coach. And while I understand the media’s frustration with Tortorella’s over his attitude and demeanor, there does come a time when they just need to stop whining about it.

He is who he is and he will not change. That’s not to say that reporters should stop firing questions at him to understand what happened during a game. Though I will never fully buy into the notion that reporters are an extension and speak for the fans. To me that’s more self-serving nonsense than anything else.

The most extraordinary thing about all of this is that no seems to be too focused on talking about the actual game. So while everyone is focused on ripping Tortorella for his post-game pressers, his team is free to focus on getting ready for game 3. Hmm, all part of the master plan? Maybe.

So while the reporters (all of whom I respect; don’t let this seem like I don’t respect the work all of these guys do) write about the “classlessness" of Tortorella and his disrespect toward the media, the actual game itself goes relatively unexamined.

For the New York media this is an entirely different animal than they’ve ever experienced. They’re used to guys like Terry Collins, Joe Girardi, Tom Coughlin and a reporter's dream interviewee, Rex Ryan. They’re not used to someone who shuts them down as if they were the nerdy high school kid asking out the popular cheerleader.

It’s new territory for them and other NHL media, but at this point they should be used to it.

Photo credit: Getty Images
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