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Kesler: Tortorella’s style ‘basically what my game is all about’

Aug 27, 2013, 7:35 PM EDT

Vancouver Canucks v Phoenix Coyotes Getty Images

Many people have pegged Ryan Kesler as a potential benefactor from John Tortorella’s hire in Vancouver.

Apparently, Kesler agrees.

“[Tortorella] wants hard work, he wants execution and he wants no mistakes. That’s basically what my game is all about,” Kesler said at Team USA’s Olympic camp, as per NHL.com. “He wants you to compete and doesn’t want anybody to take a game off, which I like.”

Tortorella doesn’t have much history with any of his new Canuck players, so his brief experience with Kesler on the 2010 U.S. Olympic team is important.

Tortorella ran the defense for America’s silver medal-winning side, but still got to work with Kesler during the finest stretch of the center’s career. Kesler scored a career-high 41 goals in 2010-11 while pacing the Canucks to the Stanley Cup Final, capturing his first-ever Selke Trophy (beating out Jonathan Toews and Pavel Datsyuk.)

It’ll be interesting to see if Tortorella implements the same minute distribution in Vancouver as he did in New York. His best players received huge ice time, as evident by Ryan McDonagh’s 53-minute performance during a triple-OT playoff win in 2012.

Kesler has been a workhorse in the past — he played more than any forward during the ’11 Cup run — and is looking to get back to that after a myriad of injuries (foot, shoulder and hip) over the last two seasons.

“I feel like I haven’t played in a couple of years,” Kesler said. “I’m 100 percent.”

  1. 3pcacic - Aug 27, 2013 at 8:17 PM

    Kessler was a one year wonder! Note it was a contract year( surprise!) and he’s disappeared since. And don’t use the injury crap he was healtyphy enough to play BUT DIDN’T WANT TOO!! Spoiled American who got EMBARASSED in the Cup Final. Wake up shucks!!

    • isithockeyseasonyet - Aug 27, 2013 at 8:59 PM

      I’m assuming you’re Canadian, assuming you are, there are just as many high profile Canadian players that are just as ‘spoiled’. With that being said, I agree this dude is a whiney little snot playing for a cry baby coach, he’s right, it is a good fit

      • vancitydan - Aug 28, 2013 at 10:16 AM

        Look everyone.

        Canuck haters that don’t know what the eff they are talking about!

        They breed in the sewers, and there are many of them…but they are to be ignored.

        Except, when , like me, you are telling them what fools they are.

        I pity the fools!

    • kaptaanamerica - Aug 28, 2013 at 4:23 PM

      Every team in this league would be in on Kesler if he was available.the guy is a machine when he’s healthy and gives 100%.that includes playing games with a broken foot or other injuries. The guy is gonna have a career year. Rather have a healthy Kesler than Dustin Brown any day.

      • Lupy Nazty Philthy - Aug 30, 2013 at 5:18 PM

        If Gillis was ever dumb enough to shop Kesler around, I would hope Nonis was smart enough to give him a call. By far the best all round Canuck player.

  2. canucks30 - Aug 27, 2013 at 9:33 PM

    If Kesler can actually stay healthy over the next couple of years, the Canucks will gradually become his team and transition away from the Sedin twins. If Tortorella sticks around for more than a year or two I wouldn’t be surprised if Kesler is named the next captain of the Canucks.

    Whether or not that is a good thing, however, is certainly up for debate.

  3. canucks30 - Aug 27, 2013 at 9:38 PM

    @3pcacic

    Kesler’s big year (2010-11) came AFTER he signed a 5 year extension during the 2009-10 season. You also may want to learn how to spell his name correctly.

    i.e. It’s not the same as the character eventually popularized as “Kramer” from the Seinfeld pilot.

  4. Lupy Nazty Philthy - Aug 28, 2013 at 12:08 AM

    I hope he can get back to how good he was during Vancouver’s cup run. He was embarrassing to watch against LA the next year. Took diving to whole new levels. He’s better than that.

    • vancitydan - Aug 28, 2013 at 10:20 AM

      You don’t know hockey either.

      Embarrassing? Really? Dustion Brown can dive all over the ice in the playoffs…be the ONLY PLAYER in recent memory to be penalized for it in 2012, ( and again in 2013 )…and you are going to focus on Kesler?

      Look folks, another Canuck hater that knows nothing of the game!

      News Flash champ. Every team has a player that tries to draw penalties. As a fan of a team that has the most notorious diver in the NHL captaining it, it’s kinda sucky to try and talk about other players being “embarrassing”.

      Perhaps you would enjoy going back to basketball or baseball instead?

      • Lupy Nazty Philthy - Aug 28, 2013 at 12:52 PM

        “WAAAA”

        You can have a conversation without all the whining, woman. Anyone who dives is an embarrassment to the league. Even Dustin Brown, but this article isn’t about Dustin Brown, is it?

        “Look folks, another Canuck hater that knows nothing of the game!”
        I’m a Leafs fan first… If they’re out, I root for the Original Six and Canadian Teams (including the Canucks!).

        And seriously what is your problem? What’s wrong with me wanting Kesler to go back to being the dominant player and team leader we saw in the Canucks’ Cup run instead of him being the diver who helped Vancouver gets swept by the Kings the very next year… what is so bad about that?

        “As a fan of a team that has the most notorious diver in the NHL captaining it, it’s kinda sucky to try and talk about other players being “embarrassing”
        You’re trying to act like you know more about hockey and THIS is what you come up with? Your hockey knowledge is about as vast as your Internet tough guy act is intimidating.

        What do you expect from someone who embraces diving, rather than get players to stop doing it.

  5. blomfeld - Aug 28, 2013 at 12:27 AM

    “and he doesn’t want anybody to take a game off” …

    NEWS ALERT KESLER ! … he also doesn’t want people taking their clothes off !

    With all kidding aside, Ryan Kesler is an excellent player for the Canucks and he’s ‘good’ people in my opinion. I still recall his interview from a couple of years back when he was responding to Don Cherry’s bellicose attack by replying … ‘oh yeah, whatever ‘big’ Don says’. Anyway, if the Sedin brothers do indeed end up going to Detroit next summer subsequent to Luongo returning to Florida, then I see no reason why Kesler won’t take over here as captain, as I think he’d do a terrific job and he’d represent this team well. About the only concern I can think of, is this penchant of his for posing in the nude ?

  6. davebabychreturns - Aug 28, 2013 at 12:45 AM

    Tortorella ran the defense for America’s silver medal-winning side, but still got to work with Kesler during the finest year of the center’s career. Kesler scored a career-high 41 goals that season while pacing the Canucks to the Stanley Cup Final…

    Uhh, what?

    The Olympics were in a separate season from Kesler’s 41 goal / Selke winning / playoff run season…

    • Mike Halford - Aug 28, 2013 at 2:47 AM

      Yeah, my bad on the context there. Meant to correlate 2010 with 2010-11, when Kes posted his career year. Posts reflects as much now.

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