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Torts expresses disdain for instigator rule and ‘turtling’

Jan 15, 2014, 4:51 PM EDT

Vancouver Canucks v Los Angeles Kings Getty Images

Two days later, hockey fans in Vancouver are still talking about the game the Canucks played Monday in Los Angeles.

That game, of course, featured all sorts of rough stuff, including Vancouver’s Tom Sestito challenging Jordan Nolan to a fight for taking a run at captain Henrik Sedin. When Nolan wasn’t willing to drop the gloves, Sestito started throwing punches anyway.

Despite the fact the Kings received a seven-minute power play for Sestito’s actions, Canucks coach John Tortorella had absolutely no problem with what happened.

“I didn’t care about the penalties,” Tortorella said today on TEAM 1040 radio (audio). “I even told the team, I don’t care about the penalties. Because if you’re trying to do things the right way to get some of the ice that is yours…you’ll probably end up getting some penalties. But you usually kill those penalties off.”

Tortorella also reiterated his disdain for the instigator rule. And without naming names, he basically called out Nolan for refusing to fight Sestito.

“Something has to happen there too, where this instigator rule and the turtling that goes on in our game, which is just so embarrassing,” said Tortorella.

“We get caught in that, but if Tommy Sestito did that again, I would applaud him. It was the right thing to do. I just think the game has lost a little bit of its honesty and its honor as we’ve gone through here. Quite honestly, a lot of it is because of the way the rulebook is written.”

Related: Sticking up for each other is the new Canucks’ mantra

  1. nightfireop - Jan 15, 2014 at 4:58 PM

    if nolan delivered a clean hit on sedin and sesito wanted to retaliate just because he didn’t agree with that hit, i don’t see why nolan has to be forced to fight an unnecessary fight.

    • jhaegs - Jan 15, 2014 at 5:07 PM

      Was it a clean hit?

    • elvispocomo - Jan 15, 2014 at 5:09 PM

      I guess it’s good then that Nolan wasn’t delivering a clean hit, mostly missing him apart from leaving his leg/knee out when Sedin moves to get out of the way.

      But seriously, I’m not a fan of forcing a fight after a clean hit. If you think it’s dirty you approach the guy, but if he doesn’t want to go then you look to get him back with a big hit of your own (or goal or whatever). Sestito paused at one point when Nolan didn’t step up, but he should have stopped punching then.

      • jhaegs - Jan 15, 2014 at 5:20 PM

        Exactly. You challenge him, and if he denies, then he’s the punk that took a cheap shot and was too scared to fight. Then, you make it a point to run him down whenever you get a chance. That’s just Kings hockey- they sneak in little cheap plays, then play victim when everyone is looking…

      • wtfkwp - Jan 15, 2014 at 6:42 PM

        I’ve seen elvispocomo’s homer comments all over. Nolan can throw. He figured he liked the seven minutes more. Stop whining!

      • wtfkwp - Jan 15, 2014 at 6:43 PM

        It’s effing hilarious to see a a flock of Vancouver Canucks fans whining about diving and cheap shots, which they practically invented.

      • jhaegs - Jan 15, 2014 at 8:03 PM

        Blues fan here… Not a Nucks fan.

      • elvispocomo - Jan 16, 2014 at 12:24 PM

        @wtfkwp: Homer comments? I’d have to say that was a pretty fair comment on my part, but then if you aren’t sharing which team you’re a fan of that hasn’t done any of the things to the same extent (can’t be the Kings, since their reputation is right up there on the ‘invented it’ scale) then I won’t worry too much about your opinion.

    • imleftcoast - Jan 15, 2014 at 5:10 PM

      Let’s not pretend. Nolan stuck out his leg and delivered it 10 seconds after the puck was gone.

      Are you pretending Dustin Turtling Brown’s hit on Luongo was also clean?

      • wtfkwp - Jan 15, 2014 at 6:44 PM

        Yeah, like, don’t pretend to have a clue what you’re talking about. Brown was pushed into Greaser, and Greaser himself said he wished his team place like Brownie.


    • hosewater2 - Jan 15, 2014 at 5:44 PM

      This is Jordan Nolan turtling. Jordan Nolan has been known to fight. This would be completely different if Sestito had done this to a nonfighter like Patrick Kane or Tyler Seguin.

      • imleftcoast - Jan 15, 2014 at 6:22 PM

        Nolan is 6″3 220. This isn’t John Scott and Phil Kessel. Nolan knew what he was doing with the cheap shot and not dropping the gloves when Sestito told him to get ready. If you played the game, you know this is the way it works. Hitting the other team’s goalie is the same thing. If you do it, you know you’re going to get hit or take a stick. You’ve knowingly assumed that risk by doing it. I don’t get the fake consternation on this site over Sestito hitting Nolan or Brown taking punches while he put his head between his knees.

      • hosewater2 - Jan 15, 2014 at 6:41 PM

        @imleftcoast…I am agreeing with you, I don’t think you read my post right. Jordan Nolan is a fighter who chose to turtle rather than fight like he should have. I would understand Kane or Seguin or Kessel turtling in this situation, but not Jordan Nolan.

      • imleftcoast - Jan 15, 2014 at 7:54 PM

        I was agreeing with you hosewater – just adding that Sestito and Nolan are pretty even on size and weight.

      • elvispocomo - Jan 16, 2014 at 12:32 PM

        Yup, agreed with both of you on the Scott/Kessel comparison. It surprises me as well after a lot of people were putting a lot of onus on Orpik for not fighting initially that people are slagging Sestito for doing what he’s paid to do to a guy who would normally fight back. He left it at that at least and didn’t continue with it the rest of the game to turn it into the bad decision Thornton made.

    • whammy71 - Jan 15, 2014 at 7:01 PM

      OMG……you’ve forgotten about the unwritten code that Bruin and Flyer fans like to imagine about.

      Like when Orpik threw a clean hit and then turned down Thorton. So then Thorton slew foots and assaults Orpik. Should have gotten 15 years….not 15 games.

      Bruin and Flyer fans called out Orpik and said it was his fault he got assaulted. Kind of like blaming the girl in the skirt for being raped.

      Finally, a fan with some common sense. Didn’t know they existed.

      • ml3939 - Jan 15, 2014 at 8:48 PM

        Could they have crammed any more stupid into you? There are probably 4 less stupid people in this world as they seriously overdosed you with that component. You can’t post without mentioning the Flyers. It’s like you have one of those deep seeded crushes on them. It’s pathetic. If you watched a Flyers game you would see they do get a lot of penalties but they rarely respond to big hits on their players with fights. The penguins have had three of the dirtiest players in the history of the league- Cooke, Kasparitis and Ulf. Even your favorite superstars are dirty- James Neal (multiple suspensions), Crosby (the Brett MacLean fight), Malkin (responds like a dirtbag when opponents get under his skin).

        Seriously, are you an 11 year old girl dropping an OMG? An that username is so silly, naming yourself after a failed professional wrestling commentator. I guess your comments ultimately follow suit.

      • whammy71 - Jan 15, 2014 at 10:11 PM

        Hey dumb arse…….what part of “Bruins and Flyer FANS” can’t you comprehend? Said nothing about the teams.

        Before you call someone out for being stupid….you should make sure you understand the subject mater….cause it really makes you look like the stupid one.

      • whammy71 - Jan 15, 2014 at 10:13 PM

        I even used the term “fans” twice and you still could understand the subject matter. You must be a special kind of stupid.

      • ml3939 - Jan 15, 2014 at 10:27 PM

        I completely understood your idiocy. Where do you see Flyers’ fans justifying this behavior? I mention the team because the Flyers don’t do it and I don’t see where their fans are justifying this behavior. You just have such a hard on for the two that you can’t post without mentioning the Flyers or their fans. Where are your posts condemning the goonish behavior of your favorite franchise? You must be a silent advocate of dirty play and a worthless poster to boot.

  2. ron05342 - Jan 15, 2014 at 5:40 PM

    It’s ok if Vancouver wants to “goon it up” for the rest of the season. It’s not their game, obviously, since they got zero goals while doing so.

    It appears VANcity will be watching the playoffs on TV rather than participating in them.

    • thesportsjudge - Jan 15, 2014 at 5:52 PM

      The streets would be safer that way, no?

      • thesheabutterfactory - Jan 15, 2014 at 6:44 PM

        On any day, at any time, the streets of Vancouver are safer then the streets of L.A..

      • 67nova - Jan 15, 2014 at 7:03 PM

        Not after a Stanley Cup final loss

      • micasa81 - Jan 15, 2014 at 10:08 PM

        Actually, yep, even after a Stanley Cup Final loss. Look up some stats and you’ll find that L.A.’s murder rate last year was 34x higher than Vancouver’s. And nobody died in either of Vancouver’s riots.

  3. canada2014gold - Jan 15, 2014 at 5:43 PM

    I agree that punching a guy when he doesn’t want to fight is not good. But you have to look at the player, if he’s constantly doing the cheap shot than turtle then you have to make him pay. Nolan tried to knee sedin, cheap shot no question so would you rather sestito hit him from behind? The game is too fast for sestito to run around trying to body check him all night, Nolan would have been hit in the numbers. He punched him and roughed him up a bit but Nolan is ok. The only part that hurts is his pride lol

    • elvispocomo - Jan 16, 2014 at 12:38 PM

      To look at it objectively, if Nolan turtles and refuses to drop the gloves, Sestito punching him hurts Nolan’s pride more than anything else. Nolan’s pretty well protected with his helmet and gloves so there isn’t going to be a lot of damage and it’s not like Nolan didn’t have ample warning to protect himself.

      Doesn’t make Sestito continuing to punch him right at all, but just a point that is worth noting.

  4. jjregan21 - Jan 15, 2014 at 5:43 PM

    The kings are a diving, turtling, cheapshot squad. Honesty and honor are not part of that teams mentality

    • cardsandbluesforever - Jan 15, 2014 at 6:56 PM

      the Kings weren’t like that until Sutter took over as coach.

    • ron05342 - Jan 15, 2014 at 8:35 PM

      Which beat your sorry team 4 times this season already. What’s that say about the Canucks?

      • cardsandbluesforever - Jan 16, 2014 at 2:46 AM

        beat my sorry ass team 4 times this season?
        hmm the Blues have 69 points in 45 games, sitting in 3rd overall in the western conference, the Ducks and Hawks are only 8 points and 2 points ahead of us in the standings having played 49 games each this season. your lovely Kings are sitting in 6th place at 61 points having played 47 games so far this season.
        we have only played the Kings 1 game this season and we lit them up like a Christmas tree and shut them out 5-0.

        you might want to actually check your facts next time.

  5. dan46778 - Jan 15, 2014 at 5:44 PM

    It okay for Vancouver to goon it up but not Boston bruins to goon it up when some lays a dirty hit on a bruin player

    • hazlydose - Jan 15, 2014 at 5:56 PM

      When the Bruins do it its not “gooning” its “upholding the code”. The Canucks just need to get all the old time hockey guys in their corner like the Bruins so they can spin it on CBC.

    • jhaegs - Jan 15, 2014 at 6:02 PM

      If Boston wants to goon it up against the LA Goons, they have everyone’s support. No punching a player in the face after a slough foot though…

    • thesheabutterfactory - Jan 15, 2014 at 6:46 PM

      There’s a line you can’t cross. The Canucks didn’t cross that line, the Bruins did.

  6. stevemackenzie58 - Jan 15, 2014 at 5:58 PM

    I have to laugh at Vancouver. Luongo got “injured” on a play where, Brown was pushed into him, barely grazing him, and hurt himself trying to do his best Vancouver Dive. Luongo should ask the Sedin sisters, Burrows, and Kesler for pointers on technique, since they have perfected it. Vancouver is done. Their Stanley Cup window-of-opportunity has been slammed shut.

    • imleftcoast - Jan 15, 2014 at 6:28 PM

      I have to laugh at Kings fans. Luongo should ask Quick or Doughty if he needs tips on diving. Quick went down like he’d been hit by a car after Weiss stopped in front of him, and Weiss was trying to help him stand up. Brown’s acting is pretty good too – he does a great turtle imitation.

      • hosewater2 - Jan 15, 2014 at 6:43 PM

        Brown wasn’t acting, he just got his butt kicked by Kesler after sneaking away from Kassian.

      • stevemackenzie58 - Jan 15, 2014 at 8:00 PM

        Still laughing at Vancouver. They can’t beat the Kings. They have to make up for their lack of talent with goon tactics. How’s that working out for you? Ooooooh, Kesler kicked Brown’s butt. Who was that standing in front of the goal, when Brown scored the game-winner? Oh yeah, Kesler!
        Scoreboard whiners!

      • jhaegs - Jan 15, 2014 at 8:06 PM

        Kings have talent? It’s a team of goons. Name one skill player for LA…

      • jhaegs - Jan 15, 2014 at 8:20 PM

        To Brown’s defense, he’s trying to hang on to those two teeth he has left in that ugly mug. Anymore hits to the head for special Dusty, and he won’t be able to count to potato anymore…

  7. wtfkwp - Jan 15, 2014 at 6:45 PM

    The bottom line here is that the Canucks paid for gooning it up, and they’re still trying to call THE KINGS the goons.

    • jhaegs - Jan 15, 2014 at 8:17 PM

      They also sent a message that they’re not going to let cheap shots go unanswered.

      • wtfkwp - Jan 16, 2014 at 1:45 PM

        The next “cheap shot” will be the first–unlike team swandive.

  8. joey4id - Jan 15, 2014 at 6:55 PM

    Torts is a good coach, but a f idiot. Why call out the league in which you coach in? This stuff will only come back to bite him. You have a problem with the rules take it up with the governor and bring it up to the board. Stop whining to the press. SFU!

    • jhaegs - Jan 15, 2014 at 8:15 PM

      He said he doesn’t like the rule. Not a big deal- unlike your “ban fighting” argument. Anything else you want removed from hockey? How about ALL of the equipment, so they can run around and have a tickle fight.

      Judging by your posts, I have concluded that you are, in fact, a female.

      • joey4id - Jan 15, 2014 at 10:27 PM


  9. slysipops - Jan 15, 2014 at 8:24 PM


  10. therooneyskilledwebster - Jan 15, 2014 at 9:08 PM

    Will the Kings allow the Nucks to win at least ONE game so their fans can attempt to recover from an obvious inferiority complex ?

  11. Gord - Jan 15, 2014 at 10:11 PM

    Every teams dirty except mine! Whaa!

    • jhaegs - Jan 16, 2014 at 2:28 AM

      And mine… 😉

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