So what if the Columbus Blue Jackets still have just over half of the season left? John Tortorella should be, and will be, named the winner of the Jack Adams award once this season concludes.
In all of the pieces that came out nationally throughout the Jackets 16-game winning streak, there was one common thread - it's amazing and completely unseen and unexpected that Tortorella has gotten the Blue Jackets where they are.
No one predicted any sort of run at the playoffs at the beginning of the year for Columbus and, with Team USA's miserable performance at the World Cup of Hockey, Torts was still getting beat up on pretty regularly. But, what no one knew at the time, was how much trust he had instilled in his team, and vise versa.
Everyone came to training camp fitter than ever before, and he doesn't baby his players. Sure, he's pulled some of the right strings on the ice, but one could argue - as I am right now - that it has been, and continues to be, the off-ice strings that he's pulling that is putting the Jackets above and beyond.
Good morning, here are your links for the day.
ICYMI From The Cannon
- A pair of Columbus natives are playing really well, as Kole Sherwood lit up the Saginaw Spirit with a five-goal night. Not to be outdone, Kole's brother, Kiefer Southerl...er, Sherwood, is enjoying some success at Miami, and was just named the RedHawks Athlete of the Week for the third time this year.
Columbus Blue Jackets News
- There wasn't much news on the Jackets front with the off day yesterday, so here's a recap of the Dispatch's Blue Jackets Xtra chat with Aaron Portzline.
- Speaking of Portzy, here's him running down who should win the backup goalie battle between Anton Forsberg and Joonas Korpisalo.
National Hockey League News
- The uniforms have been released for the 2017 All-Star Game in Los Angeles and they're actually not bad. They're, dare I say, pretty good. Each division will wear a color that is tied to the Kings' history, and that's a neat touch. However, I'm not a fan that the Metro got the plainest unis. But that's just me.
- A huge congrats to Alex Ovechkin for netting his 1,000th point and 545th goal just 30 seconds into last nights game against the Penguins.
- This is cheating a bit, because it isn't NHL news, but it is big. The IIHF is considering removing the shootout from World Juniors medal games. I know this will make some (okay most) of you very, very happy.
- Y'all know there's professional hockey played down in Cincinnati, right? Well, you do now, because GOALIE FIGHT!
- Maybe the biggest sports news from yesterday broke a couple hours before midnight on the East, but it appears the San Diego Chargers are taking The 5 to Los Angeles. Where they'll be relocating. To join the Rams. This should go well.
- Granted, I'm not tediously keeping track of every transaction in the nation, but I believe the Braves and Mariners completed the first MLB trade of 2017 yesterday.
- The Mets released their non-roster invitees to Major League Spring Training and, surprise surprise, Tim Tebow didn't make the cut because why would he? (Quick note - not even Amazin' Avenue, the SBNation Mets Blog, dedicated a post or even mentioned Tebow didn't get an invite on their website. Stick taps to them for that.)