Was that John Tortorella or New England Patriots’ head coach Bill Belichick behind the Columbus Blue Jackets’ bench last night?

Tortorella has never been afraid to tell anybody what is on his mind. Now, it looks like he isn’t afraid to change the norm for coaches behind the bench.

The fiery coach donned an official Blue Jackets-licensed hoodie on the bench for Thursday night’s game against the Philadelphia Flyers. I guess Torts wants to be a trendsetter now as well as one of the top coaches in hockey.

However, according to multiple reports, the Blue Jackets bench boss was under the weather with flu-like symptoms and was wearing the hoody because he was not feeling well. We have all been there. Not feeling well and you get the chills, so you put a hoodie on to keep warm. It is just very unusual to see an NHL coach doing so during a game in this time of the game.

Of course, in this day and age with the internet, there had to some fun digs at the situation. Even the Blue Jackets got into the act.


This isn’t the first time Tortorella has “dressed down” for a game. A couple weeks ago he sported a sweater with a blazer while battling the early symptoms of the flu.

The Blue Hoodies, sorry, I mean Jackets went on to win the game 4-3, so maybe it was a good luck charm for the club.

You have to give Torts some credit though for sticking it out on the bench, but reporters were unable to talk with the coach following the game to get more insight on the ensemble for the game, for obvious reasons. I’m sure the media were thankful as well. I doubt they want what he has this close to the holidays.

While Tortorella didn’t speak to the media, some of his players did.

Cam Atkinson said that “We should have kicked him out, kept him on the bus.” He continued, “We told him to wear one of those masks.” The right winger even hoped, out loud, that they would get a day off because of it.

But, what did Brandon Dubinsky think of the hoodie? “I think it’s a fine. Coaches in the NHL wear suits on the bench. He’s going to have to pay some cash into the fine fund.”

When asked how much the fine should be, Dubinsky came back with “You’ll have to ask (Lukas) Sedlak. He’s the fine master.”

We are still waiting to get official word, but I do believe it was Belichick approved attire.