Canucks coach Tortorella returns from suspension

Published on NewsOK Modified: February 4, 2014 at 1:13 am •  Published: February 4, 2014

DETROIT (AP) — Vancouver Canucks coach John Tortorella returned from his 15-day suspension against the Detroit Red Wings on Monday night.

Tortorella was punished without pay for his conduct after a brawl in a game against the Calgary Flames. He went to Calgary's locker room following the first period, which began with several fights.

"I apologize first and foremost to the players for the situation I put them in, to the organization for my stupidity, to the league," Tortorella told reporters after the team's morning skate. "It's been embarrassing and not just for me, but for everyone around me."

NHL senior executive vice president of hockey operations Colin Campbell said Tortorella's actions were "dangerous and an embarrassment to the league" when the suspension was announced.

Tortorella previously blamed Flames coach Bob Hartley for starting his fourth line, saying he couldn't put Canucks stars Daniel and Henrik Sedin at risk just to deflate the situation. Hartley was fined $25,000 by the NHL, but Tortorella was very contrite after his absence.

"What's happened was deserved," he said. "I hope it makes me a better coach, but it certainly doesn't stop the situations I've put a lot of other people in, especially my other coaches."

Vancouver lost 2-0 to the Red Wings on Monday night, spoiling Tortorella's return.

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