Skip to content

It’s official: Canucks fire Tortorella, Sullivan

May 1, 2014, 1:30 PM EDT

tortorellagetty Getty Images

The worst-kept secret over the last 24 hours is now official — Vancouver has dismissed head coach John Tortorella and assistant Mike Sullivan.

Here’s a statement from team president Trevor Linden, which alludes to the earlier dismissal of GM Mike Gillis:

“Today we are making an important change in the direction of our team,” said Linden. “On behalf of the entire organization, we extend our thanks to John, Mike and their families for their commitment to the Canucks and wish them the very best.”

“We have a lot of important work to accomplish this off-season as we build our management and coaching staff, improve our roster and connect with our fans. Our General Manager search is well underway and we will begin assessing head coaching candidates immediately.”

There was no news given about the status of the rest of Tortorella’s coaching staff — assistant Glen Gulutzan, video coach Darryl Williams and goalie coach Rollie Melanson — so it’s safe to assume they will remain in place until a new bench boss is hired.

In an interesting note, Linden also sent a separate message to Canucks ticketholders further explaining his decision to remove Tortorella:

This is a fresh start for our team and you’ll see us make some other changes this summer. It starts with how we shape our management and coaching staffs and the roster improvements we’re able to make. Our goal is to be back in the playoffs next spring as we continue developing this group into a team that can challenge for the Stanley Cup.

We’re also committed to making it exciting to watch Canucks games throughout the season. A Season Ticket Member sent me a message recently saying, “We all want ‘The Cup’ of course but we also want to enjoy the ride too.” We’re going to do everything we can to make that happen. We want to put a team on the ice that creates buzz and anticipation in the city on game days. A team that has you planning your week around games and coming early to Rogers Arena to enjoy the atmosphere and to cheer on your Canucks.

Tortorella leaves the Canucks after just one seasons on the job, with a 36-35-11 record and four years remaining on his five-year, $10 million deal.

Latest Posts
  1. Report: Pens’ owners seeking $750 million for sale of team

    Sep 3, 2015, 9:00 AM EDT

    Mario Lemieux Getty Images

    It would mark a record for the sale of a U.S.-based NHL team.

  2. Oilers, Flames AHL affiliates to play outdoor game

    Sep 2, 2015, 11:30 PM EDT

    gshr_raley

    Bakersfield and Stockton will play in West Sacramento, Calif. on Dec. 18.

  3. Report: Hawks’ Kane has not been asked to waive his no-move clause

    Sep 2, 2015, 10:00 PM EDT

    Patrick Kane Patrick Kane

    As many as five teams are reportedly interested in acquiring the 26-year-old.

  4. Wings’ Franzen: ‘I’m excited to try to get back and have a good year’

    Sep 2, 2015, 7:05 PM EDT

    Johan Franzen Johan Franzen

    The Swede hopes to be cleared of his latest concussion in time for the season opener.

  5. Blackhawks sign Nordstrom to a one-year deal

    Sep 2, 2015, 3:35 PM EDT

    Edmonton Oilers v Chicago Blackhawks Getty Images

    The 23-year-old appeared in 38 games with Chicago last season.

  6. After recovering from serious bike crash, Sarich holds out comeback hope

    Sep 2, 2015, 1:57 PM EDT

    Colorado Avalanche v Calgary Flames Getty Images

    “I’m a realist. If nothing happens, that’s the way it is.”

  7. Trade target Cowen says Sens’ support has been ‘awesome’

    Sep 2, 2015, 12:05 PM EDT

    Jared Cowen

    “I know that it’s not just me that feels I can be a lot better and be the player that I know I’m going to be and I want to be.”

  8. Ex-‘Hawks goalie Raanta tees off on former club

    Sep 2, 2015, 10:59 AM EDT

    Antti Raanta Antti Raanta

    He also wanted them to get swept in the opening playoff round against Nashville, apparently.

  9. Report: Devils captain Salvador to retire this week (Update: Official)

    Sep 2, 2015, 9:54 AM EDT

    Bryce Salvador #24 of the New Jersey Devils skates against the New York Islanders at the Prudential Center on September 19, 2013 in Newark, New Jersey.
(September 18, 2013 - Source: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images North America) Getty Images

    After missing most of last season with a back injury.

  10. Sharks to honor original owner Gund with banner

    Sep 2, 2015, 9:00 AM EDT

    Columbus Blue Jackets v San Jose Sharks Getty Images

    It will be raised before the home opener on Oct. 10.

  11. Canes coach Peters making tweaks with emphasis on being more dangerous offensively

    Sep 1, 2015, 10:11 PM EDT

    Carolina Hurricanes v Buffalo Sabres Getty Images

    They were near the bottom of the league in that regard last season.

  12. Eichel planning to move in with Moulson

    Sep 1, 2015, 9:03 PM EDT

    Jack Eichel Getty Images

    “The way he offered his house to me shows what kind of person he is.”

  13. Lightning’s trip to Stanley Cup Final boosts season ticket sales

    Sep 1, 2015, 7:33 PM EDT

    Stamkos Getty Images

    They had strong attendance numbers last season too.

  14. St. Louis offers Upshall a professional tryout

    Sep 1, 2015, 6:04 PM EDT

    Scottie Upshall Getty Images

    The Blues have a vacancy with Patrik Berglund out for at least four months.

Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. P. Kane (1766)
  2. P. Kessel (1516)
  3. M. Richards (1282)
  4. P. Datsyuk (1099)
  5. N. Backstrom (1092)