John Tortorella made it clear failure is never turned into a positive in his eyes.
"Losing isn't good any time," the head coach said Monday with his Flyers amid a 10-game plummet.
But what about embracing the scrutiny of defeat, the embarrassment of another double-digit slide?
It sure sounds like Tortorella is meeting that head on with conviction.
No hiding from it.
The Flyers have dropped 10 or more games in a row for the third time in a little over the span of a year. Since the start of last season, the Flyers have gone 32-56-16 (80 points). Only the Canadiens (78) and Coyotes (74) have been worse in that span.
Understandably, the Flyers are not viewed highly right now. Embracing that wasn't how Tortorella put it. He had a more vivid description, but it was appropriate.
"When you’re in a situation where you don’t have a whole bunch of respect in this league, you’ve got to eat that s---," Tortorella said. "Don’t complain about it. You’ve got to eat it. That’s part of growing. No one wants to lose, but when you’re in the situation we’re in and everybody expects it to happen that way, don’t whine about it, don’t complain about it, don’t pretend or make excuses about it. You eat it."
And don't forget.
"Just remember," he said, "just remember some of the things that happened to you and happened to your team during games. I already have a check list of remembering as far as what’s going on this year, how certain situations have been handled, quite honestly, through officiating. You’ve got to earn your respect from your officials. It’s just part of the game. And I love that about our game because you have to earn it.
"How other things have happened to other teams, how coaches put their players out at certain times — I remember things. I’m not going to complain about it now, I’m not going to fill you with the information as far as my hate list. But I have that."
Tortorella wants the Flyers to remember what transpired during the hard times. But his biggest challenge is still getting the Flyers to better times, where they're actually remembering the hard times and not living them as frequently.
It’s clear, though, that Tortorella is willing to take it all on, to eat that stuff and see it through. The Flyers at least have that in their corner.
"When the time comes and we get on the other side of it, that’s when you remember that," Tortorella said. "I think that’s all part of what we’re going through. To me, it’s a really important part of how we’re going to have to go through it. Our team, I’m not sure a lot of guys understand that, but you do. You get what you get.
"The greatest thing about the National Hockey League, you get what you deserve. And we’re getting that. No complaining, no whining, no excuse-making, no hoping, just remember. Go out and play hard and remember some of the things that have happened. And we’ll get about it then."
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