When John Tortorella was hired as head coach of the Philadelphia Flyers last spring, he vowed to change the culture and help the team "grow some skin."
His tenure started with a gruelling training camp, followed by a surprisingly hot start to the regular season. The Flyers quickly dropped back to earth and are now the third-worst team in the Eastern Conference as they hope for some draft lottery luck.
While Tortorella's takeover was never intended to vault the Flyers to immediate contention, forward Joel Farabee has reportedly not been pleased with how things have gone this year.
"Farabee's camp has voiced their displeasure to the Flyers as to how this season has unfolded under coach John Tortorella," NHL insider Frank Seravalli wrote in a recent article for Daily Faceoff.
Tortorella addressed the report during a press conference on Friday, specifically taking aim at Farabee's representation.
"This is news to me," Tortorella said, per NBC's Jordan Hall. "Is his agent popping off that he’s pissed off? He should shut up.”
“This is news to me. Is his agent popping off that he’s pissed off? He should shut up.”
- John Tortorella on the report about Joel Farabee’s camp (presumably his agent) being frustrated with how season has unfolded under Tortorella
— Jordan Hall (@JHallNBCS) February 24, 2023
Farabee hasn't flashed the same goal-scoring ability in 2022-23 as in previous seasons, recording nine goals in 59 games and currently riding an 18-game goal drought. He scored 17 times in 63 contests last season and registered 20 tallies in 55 outings the year prior.
Tortorella has taken a tough-love approach with the 14th-overall pick of the 2018 draft, benching him during Monday's victory over the Calgary Flames as he finished with just 3:52 minutes of ice time. The longtime coach also said in mid-December that he wasn't going to let Farabee "hide behind his injury" after the 22-year-old underwent disc replacement surgery in his neck during the offseason.
Farabee's name is starting to float around in the rumor mill ahead of the March 3 trade deadline, but it would be surprising if Philadelphia dealt him following the six-year, $30-million contract extension he signed last September.