Last week, John Tortorella took a shot at his former players for allegedly throwing him under the bus during exit interviews with Glen Sather. Now one of those players is returning fire as Brad Richards said this to Larry Brooks at the New York Post about the offseason coaching change to Alain Vigneault...
“I’m excited to have a difference voice [coaching the team] and a coach with a different view of how we should play that’s more focused on offense. It suits me and I think it suits everybody more on the whole team, to be honest.”
...ZING! Them fightin' words. I guess we know who ripped Torts during his exit interview. Got to say I'm shocked to see Richards go after his former coach like that. I thought the two of them, despite the benching in the playoffs, were tight.
Richards admits he hasn't spoken to Vigneault yet, however, he feels the former Canucks coach's style of play will be a lot more fun for a player like him.
Richards also spoke about his offseason after last year's struggles...
“Mentally, I can’t allow whatever struggles I’m going through to get to me. But last year’s in the past. I’ve dealt with that,” Richards said. “I’m excited about this coming year and getting back to where I think my game can be and should be.
“I know I can play the game. Sometimes I might have to defend myself a little bit to people who think I can’t play anymore. I’m very motivated. [Last season] kept me very hungry all summer.”
...i've said it since the Rangers decided to not amnesty Richards, despite taking a huge financial risk, I think Richards is going to have a bounce back year. His pride has taken a hit and he's motivated to prove his detractors wrong. Don't know about you guys, but I always bet on the guy with something to prove.
Honestly I don't know what happened with Torts. He's coached offensive teams and when he first came here he promised an attacking style which emphasizes defense first. I think the success of coaching the gritty but offensively challenged 10/11 Rangers to the EC finals went to his head and rather than adapt to the changes, he played it safe. No matter he's gone and his stubborn non-adaptable style pissed me off since day 1. I think Richey will bounce back first but even if he plays on the level of his prime it doesn't justify keeping him. Sorry. Disagree. It's not Richey, it's the cap and now our team is handcuffed.
@TheNYRBlog didn't AV say at his press conference that the only player he spoke to was Richards? Richards says here they havent spoken. Hmm
He's the guy who wanted Richards here, isn't he. Still no excuse for Richards piss poor play. But SATHER is still the anchor of the Rangers.
A bit passive aggressive are we Mr. Richards? If he didn't play the way he did then Torts wouldn't have benched him. Quite honestly he probably got too much ice time last year in the playoffs. So perhaps he should just look in the mirror when thinking about last year and not "blaming the system".
When was that picture of Richards taken? 2011-12 season? It can't be from last season because Chickets is celebrating for a change.
Yeah and Sather a hard ass decided decided to listen to some underachieving player. Torts supporters have to get over it he was a dick who with the rangers had as many marginal seasons and poor ones then good ones.
@TheNYRBlog surprised you didn't point out one other quote in the article where BR says he reached out to Torts after the firing but Torts hasn't gotten back to him. I have no idea where @kathysmail55 comments about @BRichards_1991 being a dick come from. I've never met the guy, but between all the charity work he does with kids in need, and the pro-active/low-key approach he took to help Hurriane Sandy victims, I'm surprised that's anyone's opinion of him.
Bottom line, we can speculate all we want, but Torts made his own bed by being exactly what everyone knew he would be: a stubborn, arrogant, my-way-or-the-highway, asshole. It was refreshing at first when we all remembered when MSG was a country club for over the hill all-stars. For the first few years,this group of young up-and-coming players did whatever he said and would run through a wall for him, but just like every coach, he wore out his welcome, and he wore out his players. He can call out the players, or make excuses, but bottom line is he should have seen this coming when this team was up and down through the entire season. They werent buying in. Sather did what he had to do. You have to adapt. Torts refused to be part of it and he was shown the door.
@TheNYRBlog Richards was the 1st player AV spoke to, right before the Rangers announced there would be no buy out.
@TheNYRBlog You're post needs correcting. Richards said he hadn't spoken to AV "in detail", but they have spoken.
@TheNYRBlog but sather wasn't even sold on keeping Richards. I doubt Richards' opinion made sather fire torts
@TheNYRBlog I'm glad they didn't buy him out. He'll be very motivated.
He played miserably last year and he's the one who's mad. It has to be the coaches fault, right Richie? Anyone could see how dreadful Torts felt when he had to bench Richie last year. Enough is enough. Move on.
@TheNYRBlog talk about burning bridges...don't book a flight to Van after they buy you out next year Richie!
Of course it was Richie! You don't remember his bitter "relationships change" comment at the end of the playoffs, after he was benched? He was very sour on Torts and as you've discussed at length, Richie's contract carries A LOT of weight around MSG, so...do the math...
@TheNYRBlog Sather told him to say that! he will be gone next season. but but Zuccs
@TheNYRBlog odd considering torts really liked him
@KeepingItNashty I think the playoff benching put a bad taste in his mouth.
@TheNYRBlog I think he wants an excuse for his poor play (I like Richards just saying)
@TheNYRBlog I am NYR STH who can buy 2 tix to both outdoor games tomorrow. Want 4 tix for 1 game instead. Know anyone to swap a pair? Thx!