ESPN hires Tortorella as studio analyst
One of the most vocal figures in hockey will soon be back in front of the camera.
ESPN hired John Tortorella as a studio analyst for next season.
Tortorella and the Columbus Blue Jackets parted ways in May. He served as the club's head coach for six seasons, helping the team make the playoffs in four of those campaigns. Columbus shockingly knocked out the Tampa Bay Lightning in the first round of the 2018-19 postseason.
The two-time Jack Adams Award winner guided the Lightning to their first Stanley Cup championship in 2004. He also helmed the New York Rangers and Vancouver Canucks over a coaching career spanning nearly two decades.
ESPN already added Mark Messier, Chris Chelios, Rick DiPietro, Ray Ferraro, and Brian Boucher as analysts for 2021-22, when it'll regain U.S. broadcast rights along with TNT.
The network's NHL broadcasts will feature several female voices as well. A.J. Mleczko, Cassie Campbell-Pascall, and Hilary Knight will provide color, and Leah Hextall will do play-by-play. Hextall will also fulfill other roles.
Tortorella was well known for being incredibly outspoken during his coaching career, but he was also tight-lipped at times. The NHL fined him $25,000 last August after he abruptly walked out of a press conference following the Blue Jackets' postseason elimination. He was reportedly fined more than $160,000 throughout his coaching career, usually for comments criticizing officiating.
The 63-year-old previously worked as an in-studio broadcaster for TSN when he was between jobs in 2008.